Recycling waste plant protests go up a gear with A507 poster campaign

Representatives from towns and villages across the county meet in Cottered to protest plans for a wa

Representatives from towns and villages across the county meet in Cottered to protest plans for a waste recycling plant. - Credit: Archant

A poster campaign has been launched as villagers protest plans for a waste recycling plant which would see more than 100 lorry movements a day on well-used roads.

Members of the Waste? Not! Want? Not! group have put ‘Safer A507’ posters on the display along the road between Baldock and Buntingford which could be used by HGV lorries if a plan to build a waste plant at Buttermilk Hall Farm goes ahead.

An existing building on the site – situated on the outskirts of Buntingford – would sort up to 50,000 tonnes of recycled rubbish a year, seeing an average of 48 daily lorry movements over a five-day period.

A further 66 lorry movements per day are expected for a newly built waste transfer centre used to transport recycled waste from smaller vehicles to larger ones. As well as the A507, HGVs would also travel along the B1037 which goes through Walkern near Stevenage.

Representatives from towns and villages which would be affected – including Ardeley, Baldock, Rushden and Walkern – met at Cottered’s village green to show the strength of feeling.

A group spokesman said: “More than 50 residents gathered on the village green with their dogs, bicycles, a scooter and even a pony to illustrate the activities that are increasingly denied to them on the A507’s pavements and road, by the threat of HGV traffic. Villagers report that HGVs regularly mount the pavements in Cottered’s historic conservation area to avoid collision with other lorries.

“The harmful traffic would increase if permission were granted for the building of a waste recycling and transfer site at Buttermilk Hall Farm.”

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The campaign group was joined by North East Herts MP Sir Oliver Heald who said: “I wholly support the residents’ right to fight to maintain and protect their village environment.

“This is one of the best organised and largest local protest campaigns I have witnessed and I congratulate the team on their efforts.”

The application, put forward by the agricultural family-run business Scott and Scott based at Buttermilk Hall Farm, was due to be discussed by Herts County Council last month but a meeting date is still to be set.