CRUSHING and recycling of construction waste is to continue at a quarry in South Tyneside despite opposition from nearby residents.
Bosses at Marsden Quarry, South Shields, are celebrating after South Tyneside Council’s planning committee granted it permission to continue the operation, which produces aggregates for use in the construction industry, including rock, sand and gravel.
Owen Pugh Aggregates, which owns the quarry, says the move will safeguard jobs and the company’s contribution to national and regional recycling targets.
But the decision came amid deep concerns from residents in nearby Mill Lane over dust and vibrations from lorries coming and going from the site.
Coun Sylvia Spraggon, Labour councillor for Whitburn and Marsden, said: “When the lorries pass, tea cups shake in their saucers and the liquid in the cup wriggles. That’s vibration.
“There is also dust from Redwell Bank to Marsden School. We really need to keep an eye on this.”
Resident Ronnie Fenwick, of Mill Lane, made a plea for councillors to throw out the application.
He said: “I’m 71, and we the residents have had to endure the dust from the quarry for 40 years.
“We are now at the last-chance hotel. If this gets the go-ahead now, that’s it.”
Labour’s Coun Gladys Hobson, who represents West Park, said: “We had the same problem with lorries at the old Westoe Colliery,
“There was no way we could control what the lorry drivers were doing. I have every sympathy with the residents, they could never have envisaged it would be used for crushing.”
Coun Alan Kerr, Labour for Monkton, said the council needed to do its own checks on the volume of traffic to and from the site – and not rely on the company’s own records.
Coun Mark Walsh, who represents Labour for Horsley Hill, said there was no evidence to suggest there had been an increase in dust during the course of the crushing operation, adding: “I don’t see, on planning grounds, how we can refuse this.”
John Briggs, estates and development manager at the Marsden site, said: “We’re very pleased with the outcome of the planning decision.
“It will ensure a more diverse and economical use of the quarry, in turn supporting the borough’s wider regeneration.”
Approval was granted on the condition that a wheel wash is maintained on site at all times and on measures to prevent dust emissions.