OPENCAST: Our reasons for objections

Can I appeal to your readers who either may not know, or have perhaps forgotten, about the proposed opencast planning application now in with Northumberland County Council by Banks Mining at Druridge Bay?

We urgently need those who oppose this opencast to check with our website where they will find a generic letter of objection, or they may wish to write their own. Letters need to be with the council by December 8.

The Save Druridge website is www.savedruridge.co.uk or email Northumberland County Council at planningcomments@northumberland.gov.uk quoting ref 15/03410/CCMEIA.

Our reasons for objecting to this opencast are traffic, noise, pollution, dust, wildlife displacement in an area with nature reserves and red listed species, tourism, and the fact in the second quarter of this year renewables overtook coal in the share of electrical generation for the UK, with 25.3 per cent compared to 20.5 per cent for coal in the same quarter. The UK is phasing out coal, yet Banks Mining wants to start up a new mine lasting seven years at least.

The chances of extensions are high. Only three years after Shotton opencast started, Banks Mining obtained an extension for a further two million tonnes of coal and went on to obtain another two extensions. It initially said it would mine up to seven million tonnes of coal at Highthorn and has brought that down to three million tonnes so the possibility of further extensions is a real threat.

We love our coastline. Druridge Bay doesn’t just consist of the beach and dunes, it’s about the area from the A1068 down to the sea. It is teeming with wildlife, and even Banks Mining has confirmed that 150 species have been recorded in the area of the proposed opencast. Who doesn’t love climbing the dunes and looking both out to sea and inland across the fields. People come to this part of the Bay for peace and tranquillity, as well as to bird watch.

If you feel the way we do about the area please get those letters of objection in.

Lynne Tate

Save Druridge