Ramsbottom rallies against digestion energy site
Businesses, politicians and residents are joining forces to oppose plans to build an anaerobic digestion site in Ramsbottom.
Ramsbottom Business Group, Bury Green Party and campaign group Ramsbottom Against Waste Site (RAWS) are all opposing plans to build the site in Fletcher Bank Quarry, in addition to Bury North MP David Nuttall and Rossendale MP Jake Berry.
Peel Holdings has applied to Bury Council for permission to build an anaerobic digestion (AD) centre, which creates electricity by using food by-products such as feedstock in a complex process, and would be run by Tamar Energy.
Ramsbottom was named as one of the top 10 places to live in the North West in a survey conducted by the Sunday Times and Martin Barron, an accountant at Mosley & Co in Market Place, says this accolade could be under threat if the plans are approved.
He said: “Ramsbottom is one of the most desirable places to live in the country according to the Sunday Times survey, with the smell of food hanging around the town this is not going to do it any good.
“It beggars belief that it is seriously being considered.”
Paul Morris, owner of the Ramsbottom Chocolate Cafe, set up his business in 2008 and says he may have had second thoughts about opening in the town if the site was already there, and that it may damage the town’s reputation as a tourist destination.
He said: “Ramsbottom is a fabulous tourist destination now and people come from all around the North West.
“Anything we do in and around the town has to complement that and we have to be very careful about anything that may damage that.
“The jobs that will be created look to be very minimal and the environment impact makes it a very unattractive proposal.”
Glen Duckett, of the Eagle and Child pub in Whalley Road, helps young people with training programmes to improve their employability, and he says the site would affect his business.
He said: “The big thing is the odour problem. If it smells like it does at Pilsworth, no one would want to go there.
“We have got a really thriving town now and we should do our best to keep it that way.”
Bury Green Party says that, while it usually supports green energy, the amount of emissions created by the plant has been underestimated, and that air quality data provided is “deeply flawed”.
RAWS chairman Karen Pollard-Rylance added: “With the backing of the Green Party, it is now clear that the ‘green’ credentials of this proposal are in tatters.”
Peel Holdings has tried to address concerns and has said if it is granted permission, strict odour-control measures would be introduced, and that the amount of traffic would not increase.
The plans are due to be discussed by Bury Council’s planning committee on October 15.
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