Under cover plans refused

A WASTE processing company that wanted to put its work under cover has been told it would harm the green belt.

Ward Bros Plant Hire has been refused permission for a 40m by 25m reception and processing building for timber waste, extension of stockpiling, crushing and screening area and provision of screening mounds at its base at Prestwick Pit, west of Newcastle Airport.

County planning committee members voted unanimously to refuse permission on the grounds the changes were inappropriate in green belt.

One neighbour had voiced concerns about how the building would look and its effect on the green belt.

Opencast coaling at Prestwick ended in 2002 and part of the excavated area was filled with builders’ waste. After that work ended, sorting and processing waste continued under a 2009 planning permission, with capacity for up to 150,000 tonnes of waste a year.

Planning officer Sarah Laverick said: “The proposed building would result in some adverse impact on the character of the landscape and is considered to be inappropriate development in the green belt.

“The applicant has failed to provide very special circumstances that outweigh the harm to the green belt.”