More HGVs could soon be thundering through Waverley’s eastern villages.
Is another ‘ horrendous’ scheme on its way to the MAD WORD THAT IS THE. East of Waverley?
Wienerberger Ltd was given the go-ahead last week by Surrey County Council to extract 10 million tonnes of clay until 2073, and build a new £30m factory, despite concerns from some very worried neighbours.
The new tile factory at Ewhurst Brickworks <Horsham Lane will supply clay tiles to builders across the south of the UK allowing Weinbergers Doncaster factory to supply the north.
Ewhurst Brickworks (formerly Smokejack Brickworks) is located approximately 1 kilometre (km) south of the village of Walliswood, 3.3km southeast of the village of Ewhurst, 4km south-east from the village of Cranleigh; and 2km north of the county boundary with West Sussex.
MINERALS/WASTE WA/2017/1466 MO/2017/1432 DISTRICT(S) WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL MOLE VALLEY DISTRICT COUNCIL Land at Ewhurst Brickworks, Horsham Road, Walliswood, Surrey RH5 5QH Extraction of clay from an area of 43.2 hectares (ha) with restoration to agricultural grassland, lakes, woodland and grassland; together with the construction of a tile factory with a chimney, and the permanent diversion of footpath 89; and on a site of 113ha
So the site where dinosaurs roamed millions of years ago – could soon be churning up even more fodder for the Natural History Museum?
Much of Ewhurst Brickworks is designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) (Smokejack Clay Pit SSSI) for geological interest due to the ability of the clay for holding fossils including those of insects, ostracods, molluscs, fish, reptiles and gastroliths including most notably a partial skeleton of an Iguanodon.
The company intends to construct a new tile factory to provide new products to the southeast of the existing brickworks factory consisting of a single storey steel portal frame unit with steel profile sheet cladding. The factory would be 15m in height with a length of 165m and a width of 90m at its widest point.
A kiln exhaust stack up to 30m in height will be located adjacent to the building. The construction work will take six months with all materials and heavy machinery including cranes, excavators, brought in by HGVs through the country lanes.
The proposed tile factory would be a new factory to produce a new product at Ewhurst Brickworks therefore it would not be replacing any of the existing brickwork factory’s operations.
The County Historic Buildings Officer commented that although noise from the increased HGVs should be considered as there is a steady flow of vehicles through the village as well as aeroplanes taking off and landing, all of which generate noise he was of the opinion there would be no harm to the character of the area. HGVs would increase on average from 28 to 541 HGVs (through Okewood Hill) this would be imperceptible when considered against the existing traffic.
However, not everyone agrees:
There were objections from The Campaign For Rural England, parish councils including Ewhurst and Ockley. The Okewood Hill Residents Association objected saying that the traffic assessment was not adequate.
The impacts of the proposal on the local road network and the proposed increase in HGV movements to/ from the site alongside the continuing impact of HGVs on users of the road network including pedestrians, cyclists and equestrians and the site in an Area Beyond the Green Belt and within the AGLV and neighbours Okewood Hill Conservation area was not suitable for yet more industrial development.
The Woodland Trust has also objected due to damage and loss that would occur from clay extraction within areas located within ASNW and PAWS and a site designated as an SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest). The tile factory would fail to enhance the landscape character and impact negatively the tranquillity of the rural area.