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Cheers in the chamber as chicken farm bid fails
11:00am Thursday 17th October 2013 in News
CHEERS of delight rang out in a packed council chamber as plans for a chicken farm for 80,000 birds were rejected.
The application to create two units each housing 40,000 broiler chickens on land in Upton Snodsbury, was unanimously thrown out by Wychavon's planning committee last Thursday after months of campaigning.
Peter Holpin of the Wychavon Parishes Action Group, which was set up by people from six villages to fight the application and collected a 500-name petition against the plans, spoke at the meeting.
He said: “Despite the significant level of opposition the applicant has failed to conduct any consultation.
"A professional research study has shown that such an opportunity is not viable. It is economically unsustainable, there is demonstrable economic damage, flood and pollution risk. It doesn’t enhance the lives of any locals. There are genuine planning reasons for rejection of this application.”
Ian Pick, of Ian Pick Associates, the agent for applicant, Edward Davies, spoke in support of the plans.
He said: “This application has a clean bill of health from all the consultees.
Refusal would make a mockery of the system. It is a planning application, it’s not a referendum on desirability.”
Despite a recommendation from planning officers to approve the plans, councillors were strongly against the facility.
Councillor Judy Pearce highlighted a nearby ditch, which she said had flooded in the past and run into the nearby Piddle Brook, a site of wildlife importance.
Coun Rob Adams said the application had split his head and his heart but said: “What a beautiful part of Wychavon this is. I am not against this type of application but this one is in the wrong area.”
The question of animal cruelty was also raised by coun Emma Stokes.
Worcestershire Vegans and Veggies has been campaigning against the farm.
Ronald Lee, of the group, said: “We are very happy that plans to construct this intensive chicken farm near Upton Snodsbury have been rejected.”
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