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Clearing of Orpington Waste4Fuel site delayed

PUBLISHED: 12:36 03 February 2016 | UPDATED: 12:36 03 February 2016

The Waste4Fuel site

The Waste4Fuel site

Archant

Progress has stalled due to legal issues with the landowner

The clearing of a mountain of rubbish in Orpington has been delayed following complications regarding planning permission on the site.

The abandoned Waste4Fuel tip in St Paul’s Cray appeared to finally be on its way out after an agreement between the Environment Agency and Bromley council was struck last year, but legal issues with the landowner mean progress has stalled.

The particular sticking point is that the owner has existing and valid planning permission to operate a new waste facility if they wish as soon as the site is cleared.

With both the council and EA keen to avoid such a situation, clearing has been halted, much to the frustration of residents, who have had to put up with the eyesore for several years.

Alastair Northway, 31, of Hoblands End, Chislehurst, said: “The owner of the site cannot be trusted to operate a new site given they have displayed a complete lack of control over the previous operator leasing the site.

“We could well be in exactly the same position as we find ourselves today, with a huge pile of money for the tax payer to clean up.”

An Environment Agency spokesperson said: “We understand and share the frustration of local residents, and are using all our powers to deal with the problems created by Waste4Fuel.

“We are working in partnership with London Borough of Bromley and have secured the funds necessary to remove the waste.

“Legal issues with the landowner need to be resolved to ensure the future use of the site is guaranteed before any waste removal can begin, and we are doing all we can to ensure this happens as soon as possible.”

James Brokenshire, MP for Old Bexley and Sidcup, has long campaigned for a solution to be problem, and said: “It is hugely frustrating that this blot on the landscape still hasn’t been cleared.

“Funding has been committed and is available to do the works, but legal issues have been dragging on for far too long.

“Efforts need to be redoubled to see that this eyesore which continues to blight the lives of those who live nearby is removed at the earliest opportunity.”

What are your thoughts? Email tom.pyman@archant.co.uk with your views.

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