Firm unveils ‘treatment hub’ bid at village quarry site

The plans will be considered by Cambridgeshire County Council.

The plans will be considered by Cambridgeshire County Council. - Credit: Archant

A new soil treatment hub near Somersham would operate within “acceptable noise levels”, developers have said.

The hub, involving a soil washing plant and stockpiles of material, would be at Colne Fen Quarry, in Chatteris Road, and would be operated by Huntingdon-based construction services firm Mick George Ltd.

Plans for the scheme are being considered by Cambridgeshire County Council and anyone who wants to comment on it has been given 21 days to make their views known before the authority makes a decision.

In its application the firm said that planning permission had previously been given for the importation of inert material to improve the restoration of the former Colne Fen Quarry and would create greater areas for nature conservation than previously proposed.

It said the new scheme was for consent to handle imported material in a different way and did not set out to revise any of the existing conditions dating back to 2013, such as operational hours, lorry movements and noise limits.

The proposed soil washing plant would provide additional restoration material and the opportunity to recycle stone.

A larger processing plant is operational at the quarry but was due to be removed and would not be working by the time the soil washing plant had been installed.

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The Mick George application said material had been imported under the Contaminated Land: Application in Real Environments (CL:AIRE) protocols which limited the type of material which could be used for land restoration purposes and the rest was brought in under an environmental permit from the Environment Agency.

"In order to deal with the material imported under the provisions of CL:AIRE, it is proposed to establish a soil treatment hub to stockpile imported material for a temporary period and for the stockpile then to be sampled and, if approved, for that material to be deposited on site to achieve the desired restoration objectives," the application said.

"In addition to the soil treatment hub, as part of the company's efforts to optimise on the production of recycled aggregates and in line with both local and national policy guidance it is proposed to install a soil washing plant.

"This will process imported materials that contain a reasonable percentage of aggregate that can be recovered and recycled."

The report said: "The operation of the soil washing plant would therefore generate acceptable noise levels at the surrounding properties, ensuring overall cumulative noise levels remained acceptable and thus fully compliant with the requirements of the existing planning condition and the National Planning Policy Framework."

The plans FMW/044/19 can be seen by appointment at Shire Hall, Cambridge, by calling 01223 715518, online at and comments can be made by post to Cambridgeshire County Council, County Planning Minerals and Waste, Box SH1315, Shire Hall, Cambridge, CB3 0AP.