COUNCILLORS have rejected plans by a firm to turn their scrap metal premises into a waste transfer site.
Joe’s Skips, which is based in Brenda Road, applied to Hartlepool Borough Council’s planning department for permission to change the use of their site.
Applicant Frederick Randall wanted permission to import mixed waste – including brick, concrete, woods, metals and plastics – onto the site using the skip hire business.
The waste would be sorted into piles, bulked up and transferred from the site to be either sold on or taken to a licensed waste disposal site.
But councillors, who heard that the firm had been operating as a waste transfer site since last May without the proper planning permission, rejected the plans.
If the plans had been backed the site would have processed up to 200 tonnes of waste each week between 6am to 6pm Monday to Friday and 7am to 2pm Saturdays.
The site is next to the main entrance to Corus and there are other haulage yards and engineering works nearby.
Planning officers said there is evidence to show there is already enough waste transfer and recycling sites in town and that these plans would have a detrimental impact on neighbouring businesses.
Chris Pipe, a planning officer at the council, said the application was a “particularly bad use for the site” and that it went against the council’s Local Plan.
Planners had recommended the proposals be rejected.
No one from Joe’s Skips was present at the planning meeting but agent Russell Hall, from England and Lyle, spoke on their behalf.
During the meeting Mr Hall said it was likely that the firm would revert back to a scrap yard if the application was refused.
He added that all applications should be considered on their individual merits and said there had been no complaints or reports of any problems, since it started operating last May.
Planning consent for a scrap metal dealers yard was originally approved way back in 1964.
Labour councillor Marjorie James raised concerns about the lack of proper sewers or drains on site for liquids that would come from the waste.
But Conservative councillor Ray Wells said: “This site is a lot tidier now than when it was a scrap yard.
“I look at this as an industrial-style development on an industrial estate. I would have problems objecting to it.”
After a 40-minute debate, members of the planning committee voted against the proposals by seven votes to five.