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2020 / 2021 Edition

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Greenfield quarry gets green light

PLANS by Lafarge Redland Aggregates (LRAL) for a new greenfield hard rock quarry at Boon Hills Farm, four miles north of Mansfield, in Nottinghamshire, have been given the go-ahead.

Scheduled to start in 2001, once fully operational the high-quality magnesian limestone site will cover 26ha and produce 250,000 tonnes/year, giving the quarry a lifespan of around 16 years. Restoration will see the site returned to agriculture and rare magnesian limestone grassland.

The Boon Hills Farm location, part of the giant Wellbeck estate, was first identified in 1993. LRAL lodged a comprehensive planning application in 1996 which was preferred by the county to two other proposals.

LRAL strategic planning manager Malcolm Ratcliff said: 'Planning consents for new greenfield rock quarries are few and far between and this is the first for some time. Although the application has taken some time to gain approval, we have worked hard to show that our site is the best option.

'We have also been as accommodating as possible to meet all the requirements of the planning authority. A brand new operation like this gives us an ideal opportunity to apply the latest technologies and best practices from the start.'

As well as the usual environmental measures, the approval also includes an agreement to only extract mineral from above the water table, which means the quarry will be just 13m deep.

Access road and drainage improvements will also be necessary to protect the soils of an adjacent woodland and LRAL will also take responsibility for conservation and management of the woodland.

A community liaison committee is now being established with local residents.

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