SUTTON BRIDGE GASIFIER: Village to fight district council on ‘green’ power station go-ahead

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Furious Sutton Bridge residents are ready to call in the local government Ombudsman or go to judicial review after district councillors gave the go-ahead for a controversial “green” power station.

Angry shouts erupted from the public gallery as South Holland’s planning committee gave its verdict on the biomass power station planned for Wingland after deferring it last month for information on a discounted energy supply for residents.

The proposed ten per cent electricity price cut also sparked controversy because EnergyPark Sutton Bridge is offering it to 1,500 homes and businesses and Bridge Against The Incinerator (BATI) chairman Craig Jackson told district planners there are 2,044 homes and 140 VAT registered businesses in Sutton Bridge ward.

He told the planning committee: “It is completely unacceptable that no public consultation on the scheme has taken place with any of our elected representatives regarding its scope, funding or delivery.”

Mr Jackson and Sutton Bridge Parish Council asked district councillors to examine the whole planning application again, claiming key information was “withheld” from them on April 17.

The parish council also asked for the application to be deferred a second time so it could call a public meeting to hear from environmental experts, but the committee gave consent subject to a satisfactory Section 106 legal agreement being drawn up on discounted electricity.

The parish council will hold an extraordinary meeting at 7pm tonight in the village’s Royal British Legion Hall to plan its next step and the public are invited.

Before the planning committee meeting, parish councillor Jenny Rowe mentioned judicial review – and a fellow councillor has since spoken of an approach to the Ombudsman.

Parish council chairman John Grimwood watched Wednesday’s debate in Spalding from the council chamber’s public gallery, but wouldn’t be drawn on the next step.