The Three Quarrying Stages

There are 3 main stages that take place with quarrying and it is essential that these are considered.

  • The first stage - quarrying;
  • The second stage - backfilling and,
  • The third stage - the recovery period for the land to return to its original state, if this is possible.

While it has been mooted that the proposed quarrying will run for 25 years, as you can see, it will take many more years before the land is returned to its normal state.

Questions arise: will it return to its normal state? And/or will it be required to fulfil other uses? 

 
 

Dust, noise, destruction of wildlife habitat, increase in traffic, increase in air pollution from vehicles

Stage 1 - Quarrying

Quarrying will create dust (we have established this will be silica dust)
Quarrying will incur a great deal of noise
Quarrying destroys natural habitats for wildlife, flora and fauna (many animals are dependent on sound
Quarrying will create traffic - employees going to and from the site; adding quarrying vehicles to and from the site; extra vehicles will increase the air pollution levels which are already high
If the quarrying deposits are not the quality expected then more "ingredients" would be needed to refine the quality for processing into aircrete blocks (manufactured by H+H Celcon). This would increase more HGV traffic too to bring in the exra "ingredients".

 

 
HGV traffic will increase, entering and exiting Ightham quarry site

HGV traffic will increase, entering and exiting Ightham quarry site

stage 2 - Backfilling the site

Once this site has been exhausted of its silica sand deposits, the land has to be backfilled. This means huge quanities of soil and sometimes, pulversied fuel ash (PFA) has been used to fill in the quarry.

This will create more HGV traffic in the whole area in order to carry the immense quanitites needed to fill the exhausted quarry.

Toxic waste, noxious substances and oil drums have been found in the previous historic backfilling exercise, to the north of this proposed site. Ground water was polluted and is an acknowledged risk to human health. This does not instill much confidence in future backfilling processes.

Letter from Barton Wilmore 24/10/06 stating the subsequent overfilling of the North site of H+H Celcon in which noxious substances and contaminants were found, with a potential to cause ground water contamination

 
The area to the north of the proposed quarry site in Ightham; this area was quarried some time ago and has not been backfilled to its original state; this is now wasteland and part of the TMBC Local Plan initiative

The area to the north of the proposed quarry site in Ightham; this area was quarried some time ago and has not been backfilled to its original state; this is now wasteland and part of the TMBC Local Plan initiative

stage 3 - The recovery period

If the land has been filled in, in order to return it to its original state, then it will take years for the land to recover. Certain flora and fauna may have been lost for good in this area by now. AONB and Metropolitan Green Belt will suffer. It could look like a wasteland. What happens next?

The area may then be subject to housing. We all are aware of the housing shortage crisis. The north area of this proposed site has been a victim of this scenario. ...Housing to be built on contaminated land.