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Last Updated: Friday, 8 September 2006, 11:36 GMT 12:36 UK
Talks offer on mine sewage plan
Former Cynheidre Colliery site
Cynheidre Colliery closed in 1989
The company behind plans for a plant to compost human waste at an old colliery in Carmarthenshire will meet objectors in a bid to allay their fears.

About 200 people at a public meeting heard Agresol is also to present its plans for Cynheidre colliery.

Opponents say it may cause unacceptable smells and the roads leading to the site are too narrow for lorries.

Agresol, which was not at Thursday's meeting in Tumble, said the site was secluded and well away from homes.

We are in a valley with a prevailing south-west wind - it's going to carry that smell all the way up the valley
Objector Lyn Pelham Burn

In its planning application to Carmarthenshire Council, the company said initially it planned to import about 10,000 tonnes of sludge and some 15,000 tonnes of green waste a year, although this could rise to 35,000 tonnes and 50,000 tonnes respectively.

It would be mixed on site to create biosolid compost, which can be used to grow a wide range of horticultural and agricultural crops.

Opponents fighting the plans said the colliery bordered a popular cycle track linking Tumble with Llanelli and was too close to homes and businesses.

Road leading to former colliery site
There are worries about the narrow road leading to the site

Carmarthenshire's head of planning Eifion Bowen told the meeting that the road links to the site along with potential odours would be taken into account when the application is determined.

Carmarthen-based Agresol has submitted an environmental impact study with its application.

Clerk to Llannon community council Byron Jones said the company had offered to meet with a delegation of objectors and would make a presentation to the community.

Smallholder Lyn Pelham Burn said about 300 letters of objection had been sent to the council so far.

Transporting sludge

After the meeting, she said villagers remained opposed to the scheme.

She said: "They were not reassured by what they heard. Quite the contrary, it confirmed their worst fears about the odour.

"They are all familiar with this stuff as it has been spread on farms in the area before. At least when it's put on fields it goes away after about a week. This (composting plant) would be seven days a week, 365 days of the year."

In its application Agresol said the composting plant would not impact on its neighbours.

"The site has been deemed feasible because of the large areas of concrete had standing and its remote location, which has excellent access routes," it said.

Agresol said it had experience of transporting sludge throughout Wales and if approved the Cynheidre site would create between six and 11 jobs.

The application is currently at the consultation phase and a date has yet to be set for a decision.


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