High court appeal to launch into Hitchin scrapyard

A HIGH Court appeal against a controversial Hitchin waste recycling centre was given the green light last week, after a hearing at the Royal Court of Justice in London ruled there was a case.

H Williams and Sons in Hitchin, which is now known as Metal and Waste Recycling Ltd, has faced opposition from councils and residents because of the large number of HGVs passing through the town to get to the Wallace Way site.

There have also been complaints over the amount of activity at the site.

In June, the company won an appeal against a Herts County Council enforcement notice that would have restricted the vehicles as well as removing buildings, after an independent planning inspector dismissed the council’s appeal.

But in the permission hearing held on January 25, it was deemed that a High Court appeal could be heard, as there was sufficient evidence to suggest there is a case.

“We are all really happy that we have been granted the right to appeal,” said Cllr Lisa Courts, who has actively campaigned on the issue.

“Everyone is very excited. I hope we get listened to and that the appropriate action is taken.

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“The number of vehicles passing through is just too many for our roads. It’s too dangerous.”

Although a date has not yet been set, the appeal will take place over the course of one-and-a-half days later on this year.

It will be decided here if the initial appeal by Herts County Council will be implemented.

“The test which we had to meet was to have a reasonable chance of success of winning any appeal,” said a spokesman from Herts County Council.

“The judge agreed that our appeal had enough merit to warrant a full hearing.”

Cllr Bernard Lovewell, North Herts District Council portfolio holder for housing and environmental health said that the council was delighted by the decision to grant leave to appeal.

“Our primary concern has always been the well being of the residents and businesses in and around Cadwell Lane, and we very much welcome the opportunity for the case to be reviewed by the High Court,” he said.

“In the meantime, the council will continue to work in partnership with the Environment Agency to tackle environmental issues in the community such as noise and dust.”

A notice will be displayed at the Metal and Waste Recycling site, detailing that the fresh appeal has been launched.

Metal and Waste Recycling Ltd was unavailable for comment.