Mr Toland gave evidence for Appellant (NRS) – rather wooden, just read verbatim from his script.
He was X examination by WCC Barrister, then by Rule 6 Barrister (us).
Mr Toland seemed to struggle under cross examination. If it wasn’t in his script he didn’t appear to know the answer. He appeared to concede several points.
Main planning points discussed were about rights of way, openness of green belt and urban sprawl as well as economy and amenity impact.
Dean Talbot (twice)
Spoke firstly about the BCL Hydro report commissioned by NRS Aggregates Ltd. He challenged that their report hasn’t answered any of the main concerns raised from several relevant organisations such as Severn Trent Water and others and hasn’t given answers on how water supplies will be protected and any potential contamination.
Dean then spoke about dangers/effects of a variety of lung diseases caused by exposure to silica dust particles, in relation to his own health personally and the risks to others.
Spoke about noise, dust and other airborne particulates with particular mention of prevailing winds from the south and southwest direction and the effect on a large swathe of residential properties that are downwind of the proposal. He also talked about NRS plans for bunds (earth barriers) and challenged their effectiveness/gaps.
Andy Webber PC (traffic)
Talked about lack of risk assessments by NRS on additional traffic/HGV’s. Dangers of muddy/wet road surfaces not addressed by NRS. Risks to vulnerable road users.
Challenged number of vehicles per day being potentially much higher than stated or length of time to restore being much longer (something to do with shortfall of inert material, didn’t really understand that bit).
NRS don’t appear to have said anything about mitigating risks.
Lovely speech about the historical value of the site. Showed picture of how Lea Castle was back in the day. Inspector seemed interested to see that following site visit yesterday.
Traffic noise levels, challenged the NRS submission, missing vital information. Cumulative noise of other factors as well as quarry noise not taken into account. Challenged submission on dust in greenbelt, spread. Smells, inert waste, effects on climate change.
David Jones Cllr
Good speech about our community, history of Cookley, generations of families.
Good speech about affects of noise in daily lives vs effects of constant quarry noise we have no control over. Specific reference to Mal and Andrew McDonald who live in the middle of the site.
Fran Oborski Cllr
Talked about significant impact on health near coal mines in Wales from dust. Read out the excellent AI ChatGPT generated advice regarding risks of quarry near schools. Effects on nursery infants sleep disruption and consequences. Mentioned personal experience of spending 5 days in a country with very high levels of pollution and the affect on her health.
All in all, day ended on a good note. It felt like we had come out on top!
Everyone on our side was brilliant. – Kaz Anderson