A GROUP opposed to plans to bring back large-scale quarrying is continuing its fight.

Residents from Plumbland Village are strongly opposed to the plans to bring back High Close Quarry.

The opposition group formed when a number of strong concerns were raised about the plans, submitted by Thomas Armstrong Ltd.

The company has held the rights to quarry limestone from the site since the 1950s.

In its application to Cumbria County Council, its agent said the company had spent a lot of time and money to ensure that the new quarrying operation would be in line with the regulations that have been introduced since the 1950s.

Thomas Armstrong has previously held meetings with residents to get feedback about the plans, where many objected.

At the meeting last year resident Dave Cragon said 35 per cent of HGV traffic would travel north from the site on the B5301, with a vast majority travelling through residential areas.

He was concerned, too, about contaminated water leaking from the waste tip into the River Ellen.

Now, the quarry working group is working tirelessly to get more stringent possible modern planning conditions imposed on the quarry by Cumbria County Council.

Brian Stephenson from the group explained: “We’ve done considerable research to assist in our opposition to the plans and we have identified a number of anomalies in both the planning process and the planning applications.

"The group has therefore engaged the services of a legal team with experience in this area and have set up a Justgiving page to help fund the legal costs of our opposition.

“The existing applications are essentially null and void.

" They are going to be replaced with new applications, which we expect to be submitted before the end of February.”

Cumbria County Council agreed an extension of February 2021 with Thomas Armstrong Ltd to submit new plans. “Our main concern has been what authority the county council has to manage these applications,” added Mr Stephenson.

“We’re concerned that the council hasn’t acknowledged our concerns have any fluidity. However, judgements made in the High Court concerning another case of a dormant quarry confirms that Cumbria County Council has significant authority to impose the stringent planning conditions that are necessary in this case to safeguard the health of local residents and school children, and, importantly, without the risk of having to compensate the applican


The next step is to collect donations from the Justgiving page while waiting for the new applications to come in.

Both Cumbria County Council and Thomas Armstrong were contacted for comment.