Plans to build a £200m waste incinerator in Corby will be discussed tomorrow by the borough council’s development control committee.
The Shelton Road energy recovery facility will see household rubbish brought in from miles around on lorries and burned on-site to produce electricity.
Two 75m-high towers - half the height of Blackpool tower and a third higher than Nelson’s Column - are proposed as part of the scheme which will also include a 40-metre-high waste-storage building.
They are higher than the existing 70m stacks at the nearby Corby Power Station and will be visible from higher parts of Rutland and Market Harborough,
The applicants are Devon-based Corby Limited run by directors Matthew Small and fuel and alternative energy entrepreneur David Bramhill.
An overall decision on the project will be made by Northamptonshire County Council in August as they are county’s waste management authority.
But Corby Council has been consulted as an interested party and will tomorrow, (Tuesday, June 11) meet to discuss their own response to the plans. Council officers have proposed a report that backs the scheme, raising no major objections.
Several previous similar schemes on the site have already been approved by NCC - despite objections from CBC - but this larger scheme will see 260,000 tones of waste burned each year.
Local people have formed an online campaign group to voice their objections to the plans which include its proximity to the new Priors Hall housing estate and Corby Business Academy and the danger of pollutants being expelled across the town.
They also have a petition which has 1,243 signatures, and which MP Tom Pursglove has promise to share in parliament.
In their report to councillors, which will be presented at the Development Control Committee meeting at the Corby Cube, planners say that their own local plan, property and environmental health departments have no major concerns over the plans but all have asked for some clarifications from the applicants.
They also say there are ‘no significant conflicts’ with the joint core strategy for the area.
Their statement goes on: “Willowbrook East Industrial Estate is allocated for waste management uses.. in the Northamptonshire Minerals and Waste Local Plan.
“Planning permission granted in 2016 for a waste management use.. remains extant.
“The principle of the proposed use is therefore established.”
The building will attract 175 HGV trips per day.
Corby Council’s report says that the plant’s owners will have to pay £900,000 in business rates per year, which is collected by the borough council, and that the 30-month build will generate 200 construction jobs.
Their report continues: “It is considered that the proposal has a not insubstantial impact on the character of the area and visual amenity due to its height of 39.5m and two 75m high aggregate stacks.
“Previously, the consented development was 22m high with 45m stacks.
“The increase in height of the stacks will result in some, albeit limited, detrimental adverse impact on sensitive locations within the borough including the Welland Valley, Deene Park and Kirby Hall.
“It is advised that Northamptonshire County Council consider the impact of this increase in the proposed height of the development.”
Some concerns have also been raised over land contamination as the site is a former steelworks tip. There is a worry that the disturbance of the tarmac could result in covered contaminated waste being exposed.
The applicants say that the facility will create up to thirty full time jobs.
The meeting is open to members of the public and will take place at 7pm tomorrow at the Corby Cube.