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King's Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council says 'no way' to incinerator plan

West Norfolk Council has spoken out against the proposals to build an incinerator on the outskirts of Wisbech.

A Planning Inspectorate examination hearing, which got underway this week, was told of the borough’s strong opposition to the plan.

Cllr Stuart Dark, the borough council leader, spoke on behalf of the council, which has an agreed position of opposing the scheme. He was one of several of the borough’s councillors to speak out against the proposal to build the plant on a site close to the Norfolk county boundary.

Protest against the Wisbech Incinerator
Protest against the Wisbech Incinerator

Cllr Dark told the hearing: “There is considerable community concern about this proposal, not just amongst the residents and elected town and parish bodies in my council area, but amongst all the area’s MPs, county councils and our surrounding districts.

“Currently, there is to my knowledge not one, I repeat not one, elected body or MP locally that is in favour of this large, commercially-driven scheme.

“Many, like us and Norfolk County Council, have already publicly stated their ‘in principle’ opposition to it.

Stuart Dark
Stuart Dark

“It is felt at this stage by the council I represent that this proposed facility, driven by commercial interest, is too large, not needed and in the wrong location.”

The Planning Inspectorate is hearing from interested parties including a number of groups, individuals and other councillors over two sessions of ‘open-floor’ hearings.

Although the majority of the proposed site would be in Cambridgeshire, councillors in West Norfolk have expressed strong concern over the need for the site, the location and the effect on air quality from releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and into West Norfolk.

Their concerns have been supported by the Norfolk County Council and both the borough’s local MPs.

Opposition to the proposed incinerator in Wisbech was agreed as the council’s position following a vote on a motion to council on February 25, 2021.

It was also discussed by the planning committee on July 20, 2022. Members of that committee unanimously expressed further concern that the 5km consultation area for the scheme was inadequate given the size of the plant.

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