Specialist recycling company Knowaste says it will appeal the decision of Hillingdon Council to refuse planning consent for its proposed new absorbent hygiene product (AHP) recycling facility in Hayes.
It will now go to the Planning Inspector in hopes that the decision will be overturned.
The recommendation from officers to refuse the application follows the request for additional information regarding the odour management system from the senior planning officer that was only highlighted in the planning committee report, which was published 7 days before the committee meeting.
Knowaste says it had already submitted a comprehensive report into odour management at officers’ request, and believes they had addressed the issue and would have been amenable to additional sensitivity analysis and modelling if adequate time was allowed.
Knowaste says it is now left with no option but to appeal if new jobs and investment are going to come to the Uxbridge Road site.
Paul Richardson, UK Business Development Director at Knowaste – “We are extremely disappointed by the Council’s decision to refuse our application, we’ve bent over backwards to supply all the information required and unfortunately our last resort is to appeal this decision”
The proposed AHP recycling facility in Hayes would be the first commercial operation of its kind in the UK, and would divert at least 36,000 tonnes of AHP waste per year from landfill. The plant would secure a £15 million investment in the site and bring pioneering technology and 20 skilled jobs to West London.
Knowaste says it has willingly complied with every request for further information, by the council. In March, the original planning application was withdrawn and a fresh application submitted in order to provide a fully-specified Odour Management System and detailed Odour Modelling Study, which at an earlier meeting officers had confirmed would satisfy their requirements as it was the only issue they had with the application.
Following the decision, Paul Richardson, UK Business Development Director at Knowaste, commented: “We are extremely disappointed by the Council’s decision to refuse our application, we’ve bent over backwards to supply all the information required and unfortunately our last resort is to appeal this decision. We always wanted to work with Hillingdon Council and the community to secure a local decision, but regretfully the behaviour of the Council has left us no choice.
At each stage in the process we have provided all the information required for a positive outcome, but at every opportunity Council officers have sought to move the goalposts and block this proposal.
We still want to deliver a huge investment in the local area and grow local skills and job opportunities, but what message does this send in tough economic times – is Hillingdon really closed for business?
The impact of this decision on our timetable is disappointing as we had already identified a site for plant number 2 in East London which will proceed as planned, although it may become plant number 1 if the appeal process takes too long.”