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Dumping of waste at controversial tip could end in the next five years

Welbeck Landfill Site
Welbeck Landfill Site

The dumping of waste at a controversial tip could end within five years, Wakefield Council has said.

Welbeck Landfill Site in Normanton is still running without planning permission, despite its legal right to operate having expired in May this year.

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Neighbours were promised a public park when rubbish was first dumped at Welbeck in 1998, but 20 years later they are still waiting.     

FCC Environment, who run the site, have asked for another eight years to complete the project. But now, site owners Wakefield Council say they have had assurances it could be finished sooner.

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Graham West, acting service director for planning, said: “We are in discussions with FCC Environment about Welbeck Landfill Site in Normanton and they have indicated it may be possible to complete the work sooner than originally planned.

“It is being proposed for the main landfill element to be completed by the end of 2023, and 12 months later for final restoration work to be completed.”

The local authority also says that the grassing of the site should be completed by the end of 2025.

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FCC corroborated the council’s statement.

But Paul Dainton, who has campaigned against the running of the landfill site ever since it was first created, remains sceptical about the claims. He says Welbeck continues to be run as a “money-making scheme” for the council.

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The local authority’s accounts, which were released last month, revealed that they received £900,000 in lease payments from FCC during the last financial year.

Mr Dainton said: “The whole thing is an absolute disgrace. We have a plan that would see everything completed in two years but that would cost money so they won’t do that.

“Meanwhile we have to put up with the smells and the mess and the dirt.

“Surely if the council are making money from this they should declare it is an interest at planning committee, in the same way they would if they had connections to a private company.”