‘Fight goes on’ campaigners vow

Protesters gather outside County Hall, Northallerton, protesting against the proposed incinerator in North Yorkshire.
Protesters gather outside County Hall, Northallerton, protesting against the proposed incinerator in North Yorkshire.
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The company behind the incinerator next door to Allerton Castle should pay £7m towards restoring historic buildings near the site, the castle’s owners have claimed.

Dr Gerald Arthur Rolph has written to North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) in the wake of the NYCC’s decision to approve the contentious plans.

Dr Rolph, a trustee of the Gerald Arthur Rolph foundation which maintains the 19th century castle, has hit out at AmeyCespa’s plans to set up a £983,000 heritage resoration fund for the area, which he claims is not a big enough contribution.

He has written to NYCC planning officials calling for AmeyCespa, the company behind the Allerton Park Waste Recovery Centre scheme, to spend £7m on restoration projects – 0.5 percent of the project’s total budget – instead of £983,000, or 0.07 percent.

Funds set aside so far are not enough to properly mitigate against the affect of the incineration plant on the surrounding area, he claimed.

“There is now a golden opportunity to completely restore the Registered Allerton Park and Garden not only for the benefit of the nation and also for the benefit of the local community,” the letter added.

Although the £983,000 sum is included in the application already approved by NYCC’s planning committee the exact sum given for mitigation and restoration can be renegotiated by the council, the letter said.

In a statement Dr Rolph added: “This Foundation intends to use all the resources available, including, if necessary, legal to encourage North Yorkshire County Council to require AmeyCespa to contribue a reasonable amount to the required Section 106 mitigation.”

Since the Allerton Park plans were approved by NYCC’s planning committee on Tuesday, October 30, campaigners from North Yorkshire Waste Action Group (NYWAG) and the parish council group which opposes the scheme have vowed the fight is not over.

The groups want supporters to contact the Secretary of State urging him to examine the scheme.

Planning regulations mean the Secretary of State Eric Pickles has a 21 day window to decide whether the plans should be “called in” for a planning inquiry.

NYWAG spokespeople say the council’s partnership with AmeyCespa over the scheme means it cannot impartially consider the plans, and the technical nature of the plans mean NYCC does not have the expertise the project needs.

The group is urging supporters to write to the National Planning Casework Unit, 5 St Philips Place, 
Colmore Row, 
B3 2PW or email bev.jones@communities.gsi.gov.uk and npcu@communities.gsi.gov.uk.

• See Readers’ Views, p28-30.