It’s less than a year since Viridor got planning permission to burn thousands of tons of rubbish on Croydon’s doorstep at Beddington Lane. The build of the south London incinerator has yet to begin.
Yet next week, the developers of the Beddington incinerator have an application for another part of the same site going before Sutton Council’s oxymoronically titled “development control committee” which seeks to be able to operate their “energy from waste plant” (the bit that taps into the methane from the current landfill) for 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Permission was granted only last year to operate this plant between 7.30am and 6pm Mondays to Fridays and from 7.30am until 1pm on Saturdays, and “at no time whatsoever on Sundays, Public or Bank Holidays”.
Now the operators want to drop all of those restrictions. And they have the support of Sutton’s LibDem-run council, where planning officers recommend approval to the change in restrictions. Croydon’s Tory-run council has supported the incinerator scheme – even to the point of delivering Viridor’s leaflets for them – as part of the South London Waste Partnership of four London boroughs, which also includes Labour-run Merton.
Viridor had previously sought, and been granted, permission to build a bio-ethanol plant on the site, and that was allowed to operate around-the-clock. They have dropped plans for the bio-ethanol now; but because that scheme was approved to operate all-day, every day, that is being used to argue for the changes for their other operation.
And according to a source well-placed on Sutton Council, this could be the planning process’s equivalent of a Trojan Horse, since approval of these changes in conditions could very easily be used to justify allowing the incinerator – and its thousands of HGV lorries bringing rubbish through Croydon and Sutton for burning – also to operate 24/7.
“If they can get increased opening hours for this part of the site, then it sets precedent for opening hours and will enable them to keep those hours when the incinerator comes online,” said our source, who is familiar with the planning process in Sutton.
This would be the worst nightmare for residents living on the roads in and around Beddington, who now face the real prospect of hundreds of dirty, noisy and polluting HGVs rolling past their front doors, laden with the rubbish from across south London and south-east England, night and day, for at least 25 years.
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Coming to Croydon
- March of the Mods at Oval Tavern for Teenage Cancer Trust, Mar 16
- St Patrick’s Night celebration, Ruskin House, Mar 17
- Norwood Society Talk: West Norwood Cemetery, Mar 20
- South Norwood Lakes Playground group workshop, Mar 25
- David Lean Cinema: Basically Johnny Moped, Mar 27-28
- Croydon Half-marathon, Mar 30
- David Lean Cinema: 12 Years a Slave, Apr 3
- David Lean Cinema: The Great Beauty, Apr 10
- Norwood Society Talk: Crystal Palace, Apr 17
- David Lean Cinema: Inside Llewyn Davis, Apr 17
- Opening of Marlpit Lane bowling and putting greens, Apr 17
- Arts and Crafts Market, Exchange Square, Apr 19
- David Lean Cinema: Short Term, Apr 24
- Norwood Society Talk: West Norwood – a place of change, May 15
- Norwood Society Talk: The Concrete Church, June 19
- Crystal Palace Overground Festival, June 26-29
- Norwood Society Talk: War Memorials, Sep 18
- Norwood Society Talk: From Fire Station to Theatre, Oct 16
- Norwood Society Talk: Lambeth’s Archives, Nov 20
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