Fight over £200m gasifier to go to Secretary of State?

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Sutton Bridge Parish Council may take its fight to overturn planning consent for a £200million gasifier to the Secretary of State.

The parish council meets tonight (Tuesday) and members are being asked to go to the top to ask for a public inquiry into South Holland District Council’s decision to give planning consent to the EnergyPark Sutton Bridge plant at Wingland.

An extraordinary parish council meeting was called some days ago at which members agreed to set aside a £10,000 fighting fund.

Judicial review is one avenue being explored by parish councillors and an anticipated formal complaint to the district council may end up with the Local Government Ombudsman.

Three parish councillors – Shirley Giles, Jenny Rowe and Vicky Hills – have tabled a series of motions for tonight’s meeting, including using some of the £10,000 fighting fund to leaflet villagers and keep them in the picture.

Coun Rowe said it was the first time South Holland had dealt with a gasifier application and consent was given when there remain so many unanswered questions about its possible effects on people, wildlife and the environment.

She said: “We know now that all other countries are building them in the middle of nowhere.”

Coun Hills says the district council paid scant regard to people living and working at Wingland and there was nothing she could see in documents submitted to assess the risk of explosion or fire.

“That’s a huge factor especially considering it’s right next door to a gas fired power station,” she said.