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Extra Time Given Over Wareham Forest Gravel Pit Plans


7:54am 12th February 2014

Campaigners fighting against plans for a mineral extraction site in Wareham Forest have been given more time to have their say.

An area of heathland and woodland between Sherford Bridge and Gore Hill - off the A35 - has been earmarked by Dorset County Council for digging clay and gravel.

Campaigners say the area is popular with dog walkers, runners and cyclists and say it shouldn't be turned into a "gravel pit."

Dorset County Council has now given people living nearby an extra week to voice their objections - the closing date for letters and feedback was Thursday 13th February.

County Council Officials says their proposals are in the early stages and are just an idea at the moment.

Denise Bell runs the Silent Woman Inn in Wareham Forest says an extra week is good for the campaign that's growing;

"It goes to show if we stick together on this, they are going to listen to us, for how long we don't know but at least they're aware about our strong feelings against the proposals and know that people aren't just going to sit by and let it happen."

Prospective Lib Dem Parliamentary candidate for Mid Dorset and North Poole Vicky Slade hopes the Council does a U-turn;

"This area is really good for tourism and it's very special in its ecology which is important to the wider economy and the wider community. It's just the wrong area to be taking minerals out of the ground."

Mike Garrity, head of the Planning Policy team said:

"Dorset County Council as a Mineral Planning Authority is required to produce a Mineral Sites Plan, identifying future quarries for future mineral supplies.   The site known as Gore Heath (AS23) has been nominated to Dorset County Council for consideration for a possible future sand and gravel quarry.  
At this stage the plan is only identifying sites that have been proposed to us for consideration, to ensure that the public is able to see what might sites are being considered by land owners/the mineral industry. None of the sites have been endorsed by the Mineral Planning Authorities.

We strongly encourage people to view the plans and send us their comments by the end of the consultation on 13 February 2014. This will help us to understand the most important issues for people before the plans are progressed any further."

You can raise an objection by clicking here.

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