Cllr Nimby asks Slough to support routing of trucks through Brands Hill pollution hotspot
An Iver councillor has thrown his weight behind CEMEX’s plans to route HGVs for its new quarry in Richings Park through Sutton Lane. The news comes as the company says it is aware of the current breaches of legal air pollution limits.
Cement manufacturer CEMEX’s plans to route 240 trucks a day from its proposed new quarry through Sutton Lane come in spite of the company acknowledging the ongoing problems with air pollution at Brands Hill, the company has told Colnbrook Views.
In response to enquiries by this website on Sunday, the company’s PR representatives said, last night, that it is already aware of the Air Quality Management Area designation but “would come up with its own assessment during the next steps of its application.
CEMEX is aware that Slough Borough Council has designated an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) which covers Junction 5 of the M4 and London Road (A4) up to the Brands Hill gyratory
“As part of the planning application, CEMEX will undertake an Environmental Impact Assessment. The Assessment will include an air quality assessment. This will assess the effects of emissions from traffic associated with the quarry on this AQMA”.
The current routing proposed is designed to mitigate impact to residents in Richings Park, and win over support where the proposed quarry would be based over its eight year lifetime.
Bizarrely, Iver councillor Paul Griffin has taken to Streetlife to ask Slough Borough Council to support the proposed routing agreement.
Griffin previously masterminded failed petitions to Parliament to demand that HGVs associated with the Heathrow Express depot relocation to Langley be similarly routed through the pollution hotspot – arguing that Iver and Richings Park residents should not have to experience the impact of HGVs.
Members of the Colnbrook Community Association have been threatened with being banned from the Richings Parks residents’ pages on Facebook for suggesting that pushing the village’s HGV problem to other, more vulnerable residents, is unfair.
Slough has said this week that it was powerless to act in the case of a previous quarry approved by Windsor & Maidenhead council last January which is only now starting to come onstream. The quarry at Riding Court Farm in Datchet is to send 284 trucks a day through to Langley to avoid upsetting Datchet residents.
“We have the same on our doorstep now. There is a plan for an 11 year project in Iver which will route more trucks towards the M4/A4. This project doesn’t yet have a planning application but it will rely on support from SBC to route the traffic that way so maybe Slough Council will keep an eye out for the application.”
Slough Borough Council has so far ignored the comment.
Will Slough support a routing of CEMEX trucks through Brands Hill? In March we revealed the Council's extraordinary efforts to prevent Highways England's plans to route its own HGVs through Sutton Lane on air quality grounds and it would seem highly unlikely that Slough would support Cllr Griffin's call on the basis of the harm it would cause its own residents.
Following the questions put by Colnbrook Views regarding the lack of consultation offered to Colnbrook residents the company says it has today extended an offer to meet to Colnbrook’s two ward councillors, Cllr Dexter Smith and Cllr Avtar Cheema, to discuss the scheme.
CEMEX has not met representatives of the Colnbrook community so far. However, we made an offer today to meet with Slough Borough Members for Colnbrook with Poyle
“CEMEX is in the middle of its community engagement process. So far it has had informal engagement with officers and councillors at Slough Borough Council and has met representatives of the Langley Neighbourhood Action Group to discuss the proposals.
CEMEX says the reason it is proposing the quarry now is to recover the sand and gravel before it is “sterilised” by the Western Rail Access to Heathrow project. Sterilisation, it says, prevents its future use.
The company has ruled out the possibility of funding an Iver Relief Road.
Although Colnbrook residents have not been invited to the public exhibition this Friday the company’s PR spokesperson has now told Colnbrook Views that “all members of the surrounding communities” are encouraged to attend.