GRAVEL FIRM IN BID TO MINE
...65 years after planning permission was first granted
THE owners of a sand and gravel pit want to start extracting minerals from the site 65 years after planning permission was first granted.
Ellesmere Sand and Gravel Ltd have submitted an application to start operations at Cae Efa Lwyd Fawr, Penygroes.
Permission was initially granted in December 1951 but the site has lain dormant since then.
Gwynedd Council’s planning committee discussed the proposal at a meeting in Pwllheli on November 27, after a number of objections were raised locally.
A minerals review application was registered with Gwynedd Council nearly four years ago to remove sand and gravel from the seven-acre site on Ffordd Clynnog.
If the owner’s bid is successful, around 500,000 tonnes of material would be removed over a 17-year period.
A report to the committee notes the proposal does not include plans for the installation of machinery for the screening, crushing or washing of the materials, and Cae Efa Lwyd Fawr will serve as a satellite to the Cefn Graianog quarry, which is also in Penygroes, and the removed materials will be taken there for processing and sale.
The report recommends the committee authorises the council’s senior manager of planning, environment and public protection service to determine whether the plan is given the go-ahead.
So far 14 local objections and two petitions have been received as a result of the consultation.
The concerns included the scale of working and the impact on the neighbourhood. The locals feel these make it impossible to realistically work the site in accordance with acceptable planning conditions.
Other issues included the loss of privacy, noise and dust and the impact on local roads from trucks going to and from the site.
Objectors also fear the site could cause damage to wildlife habitats and have an impact on Glynllifon SSSI (special site of scientific interest), which is close by. Llanllyfni Community Council requested that planning conditions address the requirement for dust assessments, the impact on nearby residential properties and imposing restriction on haulage movements during school hours.
The report notes the application is also the subject of a call-in request on the Welsh Government and officials would consider the committee report and consult with their own advisors prior to the Minister deciding if he will determine the application or leave it with Gwynedd Council.
● The application was deferred and will be brought before the planning committee at another date.
● A sign by the site opposing the mining
● The site in the village of Penygroes
Above: T The site of the sand and gravel pit at Penygroes. Left: Signs protesting against the pit plans, which it is feared could damage wildlife