Controversial plans to extend the operating hours at a Wyre waste plant could take a step forward after bosses agreed to a four-point plan to ease residents’ fears.
Almost 100 people have objected to the application from Lancashire Waste Recycling, which would see the Thornton site operating hours extended and vehicles arriving at the plant on Sundays for the first time, amid concerns over the noise and traffic impact.
But Coun Andrea Kay said she is prepared to back the plans after reaching a deal with bosses to limit vehicle movements on a Sunday to just three. No waste will be processed on Sundays.
The issue had proved a stumbling block in negotiations, which also saw an agreement reached over the route lorries will take to and from the plant, at Burn Hall, on Venture Road, as well as steps to limit unpleasant odours coming from the site.
Coun Kay, who represents Thornton Cleveleys North on Lancashire County Council, said she wanted a solution that worked for residents.
She added: “We had a meeting on Friday and they have told us it is possible.
“This could work for all sides. I don’t want this plant not to make money – I want them to be able to provide more jobs.”
She said she hoped an open day at the plant later this month would let residents see the plans for themselves and put some of their fears to rest.
She added: “I don’t think it is always the plant causing the smell. I think there is a smell that comes from somewhere else.”
The application is due to go before Lancashire County Council’s planning committee on April 8.
An email sent by plant bosses on Friday, seen by The Gazette, outlines the deal to tackle the main issues.
It sets out rules for drivers to adhere to, including an agreed route to the site along the A585, turning right at Bourne Way and then left onto Fleetwood Road North as far as Venture Road. Maps will be issued to all drivers.
The email adds: “Enforcement action will be taken against any drivers in breach of this.”
Bosses also agreed to sign up to the local odour control scheme, known as “The Nose”, and use fast-closing doors when wagons arrive and depart to keep odours contained within the building.
Paul Mellor, managing director of Lancashire Waste Recycling, said: “We are prepared to act to the benefit of the area and the local community.
“The plant does not process waste on a Sunday and we commit to no more than three vehicle movements into and out of the site between 10am and 3pm on Sundays.
“We were able to give Coun Kay our written guarantee there will be no vehicle movements outside these hours.”
The open day will take place between 10am and noon on Saturday March 21.