Sunday, 29 June 2008

Composting application presentation at Dyrham and Hinton PC

SITA's presentation to Dyrham and Hinton Parish Council on Thursday and the one made by the Parish Council in response provoked a lively and interesting debate. Points made by SITA and Agrivert representatives in response to questions included:

  • Both VOSA and the Highways Agency are expected to continue to use their parts of the site, there is no intention to take over areas outside the training agency land.

  • They are still working on the detailed traffic assessment. As the vehicles are arriving outside peak times, they don’t expect the impact on the motorway junction to be a problem. They provided revised vehicle movement figures to take account of weekly collections, but Claire Young has written to SITA since the meeting requesting further clarification.

  • The facility would revert to SGC-ownership in 2025.

  • The capacity required was modelled and provided by South Gloucestershire Council. SITA currently collect 20 000 tonnes of green waste from the kerb-side, 3000tonnes from civic amenity sites that could continue to go to open windrow as it wouldn’t include food waste and expect to collect 5000 tonnes of kitchen waste.

  • They denied that they had been unable to use a site in Avonmouth because Tesco didn’t want it next to their warehouse because of fears of contamination.

  • Agrivert will have to repay SITA if there are problems with the site in the first two years.

  • They conceded it wasn’t ideally located, being on the edge of South Gloucestershire and not near the centres of population, but it has the advantage of being near agricultural land. However they anticipate the end product going on arable land, not grazing land.

  • Both SITA and Agrivert insisted this wasn’t a cheapskate option.

  • They would not exceed the licensed capacity, aside from that not being allowed it would cause odour problems and result in a poor end product. They mention 30 000 tonnes in the title of the application as that cannot be varied in the way that conditions can, so any increase would have to be through a new planning application.

  • The site would be sealed with fences to stop vermin getting in and nets between buildings to keep out birds. It is interesting to note that you cannot graze animals on fields on which the compost has been spread for 8 weeks.

  • To pass Animal Byproducts regulations, 27 random tests are carried out and if a single one fails the product has to be landfilled. Agrivert has never had a plant shut in 26 sites across Europe in 14 years.

Claire Young pointed out, as she did at the Westerleigh presentation for the previous application, that it was wrong to say that all of South Gloucestershire outside towns and villages is green belt. She also asked SITA to clarify why they had ruled out the Hallan site that New Earth Solutions are considering. Gareth Phillips of SITA said he had visited the site personally and thinks that both it and a nearby site are unsuitable because there is a problem with access for the "bulkers" that take the compost away.

Latteridge Road closure

Latteridge Road, Iron Acton will be closed to traffic from 10pm today (Sunday 29th June 2008) until 5.00am tomorrow morning, due to essential works on the Railway Crossing after a vehicle collided with it.

The alternative route for vehicles is via Bristol Road B4058, Perinpit Road and Old Gloucester Road B4427 to A38 and vice versa
Bristol Road B4058, Wotton Road B4058, Stidcote Lane, Duck Street, Stowell Hill Road, Tytherington Road to A38 and vice versa.

Next Safer Stronger Community Group meeting on Tuesday

The next Safer Stronger Community Group meeting for Frampton Cotterell/Westerleigh is at 7.30pm on Tuesday 1st July 2008 at Frampton Cotterell C of E School. This is your chance to raise issues with the police and local Councillors.

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Composting facility presentation tonight

SITA will make a presentation at Dyrham and Hinton Parish Council tonight (Thursday 26th June). The meeting is at 7.30pm in the Parish Hall.

Ram Hill foul drain smells fixed?

Claire Young recently wrote to Wessex Water about foul smells coming from the drains on Ram Hill. They investigated and identified a fault at Henfield Sewage Pumping Station. This fault has led to the contents being kept for long periods at the site and in the rising main that discharges near Ram Hill Business Park, which has caused septicity and ultimately the foul odour.

Wessex Water have now rectified the fault, which they say should resolve the smell problem. If this is not the case, please contact Claire Young on 01454 864086 or

Friday, 20 June 2008

Ram Hill Colliery work party

The Friends of Ram Hill Colliery have organised a work party for 10am-3pm this Sunday (22 June). They say it will help if you can bring along your favourite spade or shears.

Monday, 16 June 2008

An extra 30 800 homes - comments by the bagful

Local people have been sending in hundreds of paper and electronic responses to the South Gloucestershire Core Strategy consultation - and they're not at all happy at the options the Conservative-led council is putting forward.

The photo shows the Lib Dem's planning spokesperson Pat Hockey with the latest bagful of letters she has received from worried residents.

The official deadline for commenting on the Core Strategy was last Friday but there will be another consultation later in the summer when the minister publishes her response to the recommendation that an extra 30 800 homes should be built in South Gloucestershire. Watch this space for more information.

Friday, 13 June 2008

Composting facility will take weekly green bin collections

It's been confirmed that there will be weekly green bin collections including food from next April, not fortnightly as SITA have been telling residents.

At the Parish Council meeting at Tormarton on Monday, SITA said their plans were based on fortnightly green bin collections, with food being collected in green bins one week, black bins the next.

Lib Dem councillors queried this with Council officers, as the Council has committed to weekly green bin collections from April 2009. It's now been confirmed that SITA's plans should accommodate weekly collections.

Claire Young has asked for SITA to provide revised vehicle movement figures as a matter of urgency.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Latest bus service proposals from First Bus

Coalpit Heath - The X42 which goes via the M32 will be retained, giving one express service an hour, but off-peak buses will be reduced from 4 buses per hour to 3 as both the X30 and X40 will be withdrawn. The X30 will be replaced by the new 327, which will go into Bristol via Frenchay hospital.

Frampton Cotterell - There will now be no express service as the X30, which goes via the M32, will be replaced by the new 327 which will operate via Hicks Common and Frenchay.

Iron Acton - The new X27 service via the M32 will replace the 328 and within the village buses will avoid the High Street due to parking problems there.

Composting application presentation at Tormarton PC

Last night SITA gave a presentation about their In-Vessel Composting application and answered questions about it at the Tormarton Parish Council meeting. Claire Young attended along with fellow Lib Dem Councillors Sue Hope and Sarah Turley.

The questions were wide ranging and topics included:

Choice of site - SITA acknowledged this wasn't ideal, being in the Green Belt and the AONB, and that an industrial site would be better, but this was the result of a long search. They did secure planning permission at a site in Avonmouth but that area is changing rapidly and moving from heavy industry to warehousing. They also agreed a more central location would be preferable, but again argued there was a lack of alternatives.

Back up plans - They are still looking at alternatives and would withdraw this application if a better site became available.

Timing of application - SITA are now looking to put in the planning application towards the end of July.

Enclosing the tunnels in a building - They are reviewing with DEFRA whether they should enclose the tunnels but operationally this wouldn't be as good.

Vermin - Nothing stays still in the open for more than 8 hours, during which time there’d be too much movement of vehicles for animals to want to go on site. There will be baiting stations around the site, it will be fenced and the whole area kept clean.

Odours - The Agrivert spokesman claimed residents wouldn’t even know this site was there.

Bioaerosols - These will be monitored before and after the site is commissioned.

Claire Young asked about:

  • The inclusion of cardboard, which isn't treated at Agrivert's Edmonton IVC. Agrivert assured the meeting that they had learnt their lessons at their open windrow site in Oxfordshire, which takes cardboard, although he didn't elaborate on how these lessons would be applied at this site.

  • The market for the end product - Agrivert insisted farmers were falling over themselves for the compost.

  • Whether the predicted vehicle movements allowed for taking waste from other authorities, which they said it did.

Friday, 6 June 2008

Local roadworks

In the coming weeks there wil be several sets of roadworks that might slow your journey locally:

  • From 9th to 11th June there will be a trench surface repair on the Badminton Road/Station Road A432 from near the railway bridge to Stover Road. This will require off-peak traffic signals and lane width restrictions.
  • The railway bridge on Westerleigh Road, Westerleigh will have two way traffic lights on 12 June while the bridge is inspected.

  • The A4174 Ring Road between the Bromley Heath roundabout and the Wick Wick roundabout will have lane closures for approximately 12 weeks from the end of June for essential bridge strengthening

Have Your Say surgery tomorrow

Don't forget that tomorrow local Councillors Pat and Dave Hockey and Claire Young will be holding a surgery at the Brockeridge Centre from 10.30-12.30 for anyone who wants to discuss their responses to the "Core Strategy" consultation.

Phone boxes under threat

Many of our local phone boxes are threatened by a BT plan to remove all "uneconomic" phone boxes from our streets, whether they are needed for emergency purposes or not.

The following phone boxes are under threat in the Ladden-Frome area:

Henfield Road, Coalpit Heath
North Road, Yate
Sundays Hill Lane, Falfield
Charfield Hill, Charfield
Little Bristol Lane, Charfield
Court Road, Leyhill
Longcross, Cromhall
Heathend, Cromhall
outside the old Post Office, Westerleigh
At the layby, Stover Road, Yate

Since 2002 BT has removed 31,000 kiosks around the UK.

The Evening Posts reports the phone box story here.

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Composting drop-in sessions - today and tomorrow!

Drop-in sessions will be held on Tuesday 3rd and Wednesday 4th June at Tormarton Parish hall between 6pm-8pm. SITA will be in attendance at the Wednesday session.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

All change in Yate

Yate town centre is currently undergoing a great deal of change. Work started on the new Health Centre earlier in the year(as you can read on our sister blog). The leisure centre is about to undergo a revamp, during which it is hoped it will stay open.

Not to be left out, the library will be extended and developed using £1.5 million from the Big Lottery Fund. The plan is to close Yate Library in September and operate from a temporary base for about 12 months. They will also be extending the opening hours of Chipping Sodbury Library during that time. In preparation for this Chipping Sodbury Library will be closed from 14th June – 5th August for internal redecoration and refurbishment.