The Witham Valley Park Preservation Group (WVPPG) are local residents and business owners who have come together to express concern around, and campaign against, the proposed Animal Rendering Plant at Villa Farm, Norton Disney. This factory, if built, would affect over 15,000 local villagers.
As a “Waste” application, the Planning Application for the proposed factory requires submission to Lincolnshire County Council.
In late March 2018, Lincoln Proteins submitted their planning application to LCC, confirmed by their PR lead, Jeremy Fieldsend of Fieldsend Associates, and supported by Ian Walter of JHWalter. In May, this application was validated by Lincolnshire County Council.
About the proposed Animal Rendering Factory
The proposed factory would sit on the Lincolnshire-Nottinghamshire border, affecting both Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire residents and businesses.
*Red line depicts Notts/ Lincs Border. Proposed factory site at Villa Farm site on the purple line. Photo courtesy of Google maps.
Causes for Concern
You can view a summary of our main concerns on the Lincolnshire County Council YouTube channel, from our presentation at the full Council meeting on 15th December 2017 (skip to 9 mins 40 secs). Our online petition, signed by over 3500 people, was also presented to the Chairman of the Council on this date.
Lincoln Proteins Ltd
In November and December 2017, Lincoln Proteins and their planning & PR consultants attended a number of meetings (and declined to attend others); an Exhibition at Norton Disney, Parish council meetings at Norton Disney, Collingham and Swinderby, and the North Kesteven District Council Offices (Sleaford) for a Pre-planning Application Meeting.
During these meetings, Lincoln Proteins Ltd has acknowledged that:-
- They are considered to be a ‘bad neighbour’ and other industrial estates do not want them on-site
- This will be a CAT 1 plant which will process Specific Risk Material (SRM) including spinal cords; 1800 tons of Category 1 and 2 material will be processed each week, with another 1800 tonnes of Category 3 material
- Lincoln Proteins have not satisfactorily outlined what will happen to waste from the factory
- There will be a considerable visual impact from the two planned buildings, which will be larger in size than Sainsbury’s, Lincoln; site buildings will include boiler houses up to 15m in height and Balance Tanks over 11m tall
- There will be an emission chimney 35 metres in height (to put this in perspective, a fully-grown oak tree is only up to 24m in height) with a 3.3m diameter stack
- When pressed for exact emissions from this 35m chimney, the company responded that it depends what is put through the system but will include sulphur dioxide (SO2) and ammonia.
- The proposed factory will be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
- Lorries will be making deliveries through the night
- Whilst the given numbers have varied from first meetings to the final planning application submitted, up to 150 HGVs may enter and exit the plant each day, plus 40 additional vehicles
- Lincoln Proteins have already referenced future planned expansion
- Lorries will be permitted to cross the A46 dual carriageway at the Norton Disney junction.
- The proposed A46 exit at Folly Lane will create an accident blackspot.
- When asked what would happen if the A46 were to be closed, the company has given a variety of answers to date. Residents, particularly those from Collingham, have expressed concern that huge lorries will divert through local villages.
- According to the Lincoln Proteins manager, their lorries will smell – an ‘insurmountable problem’ as the vehicles are ‘the weakest link’.
- The company believes the two Thermal Oxidizer machines in the factory will effectively control odour. When questioned re actual volume of gas the escaping 1% of odour equated to, Lincoln Proteins were not able to provide a figure, even when pressed by Dr Caroline Johnson, MP.
- A reduction in house price is not a valid reason for objecting to the Council against the proposed development however it was acknowledged that there is likely to be an impact on house prices.
- The nearest building is less than 300m from the proposed site, and within 1 mile lies the award-winning Hill Holt Wood, several equestrian businesses, a B&B and wedding venue, an award-winning pub and in due course, a specialist school.
- Not all of the Specialist Reports have been received by Lincoln Proteins to date (as at 28th November) however the Planning Application is expected to be submitted shortly.
- In recent meetings, Lincoln Proteins have indicated that they intend to continue to run the Skellingthorpe site alongside Villa Farm, if the latter is approved. We neither require nor want two rendering plants within 10 miles of each other, processing UK-wide waste.
About the village of Norton Disney
Norton Disney is an idyllic village and civil parish. Based in Lincolnshire, on the western boundary of the North Kesteven district, it sits close to the Nottinghamshire border and is just ten minutes both from the market town of Newark, Notts and the historic city of Lincoln. Norton Disney is the seat of the Disney family, an Anglicised version of the original French surname d’Isigny, of Isigny-sur-Mer in Normandy, from whom film producer Walt Disney’s family might be descended.
Despite its small population (circa 240 residents) Norton Disney packs quite a punch.
It is the home to the British Eventing bi-annual Norton Disney Horse Trials, the multi award-winning social enterprise Hill Holt Wood (you can read their position statement regarding the proposed factory here) and one of the County’s best-regarded pubs, The Green Man.
Every summer, thousands of festival-goers flock to the immersive Lost Village Festival, set up by Radio 1 DJs, Jaymo and Andy George.
Villa Farm sits on prime agricultural land, just off the A46, at the Gateway to Lincolnshire. Its entrance is off Folly Lane, a single-track road.
Communication Channels & Respect
We have created this website to provide information and let you know how to get involved. New members are always welcome and everyone’s opinion is important. We appreciate the varied demographic of concerned parties and the central team will seek to distribute information across multiple channels, not just social media.
Whilst the group is not in favour of the proposed factory, the information on these webpages is factual and is not designed to be political or inflammatory. It will fairly and accurately represent the concerns of those whose lives and livelihood would be significantly impacted by the development of such a factory. Our campaign is respectful and appreciates the right to respond. We’ll be inviting Lincoln Proteins Ltd to our planned events and meetings. If Lincoln Proteins feel WVPPG have not accurately depicted events or facts (most meetings to date have been audio-recorded and there are written transcripts), we will publish an amendment. We are grateful to our elected County Council officials for listening to our views and believe that they will make a fair decision. Whilst social media allows for unfiltered opinion, the WVPPG group will not engage with those who post incorrect or offensive material.