Of 150 comments to planners, 90 per cent oppose Fengrain’s bid for anaerobic digestion plant at Wimblington near March

The last public meeting about the anaerobic digestion for Fengrain, was packed

The last public meeting about the anaerobic digestion for Fengrain, was packed - Credit: Archant

Furious residents have bombarded Fenland District Council voicing their concerns over a proposed anaerobic digestion plant.

Fengrain, Wimblington. Picture: Steve Williams.

Fengrain, Wimblington. Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

An overwhelming 90 per cent of the 150 comments made in response to Fengrain’s application are opposed to the proposals.

Next week a second public meeting (the first last summer attracted 120 residents) will be held to air opposition to a plant which many argue is too close to homes and will create a noise and smell invasion.

They also worry the digester will create a traffic nightmare from extra tractors travelling along the A141 and through the villages to get to the plant with their loads of sugar beet.

Maureen Davis, chairman of Wimblington parish council, said: “In my view this is the biggest thing to hit Wimblington. It will have a massive impact if it gets the go ahead.

Fengrain, Wimblington

Fengrain, Wimblington - Credit: Archant

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“Fengrain has calculated potential noise levels on industrial estate scales which require lower decibel rates than agricultural land which this is.

“It will be a noise pollution for local homeowners. Rotting sugar beet smells awful, imagine living close to that.

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The parish council also object as they say the scheme will destroy habitat for protected species like great crested newts, turtle doves and nightingales and will only provide two jobs.

County councillor Dave Connor said he was “absolutely astonished” the application had been recommended for approval by Fenland planners and added lessons should be learnt from Mepal and Chittering where anaerobic digesters had caused problems of mud on roads and at Chittering there had been an explosion and pollution.

The public meeting is being held on January 29 in the parish hall, Addison Road, at 7.30pm.

Fengrain director Paul Randle has said the company “genuinely believes the plant will not adversely affect the area.

“It will also bring employment, green energy, investment and give local farmers alternative options for their crops.”

Mr Randle says there will be virtually no noise or smell from the plant and the site will be screened off to take away its potential visual impact.

Fengrain says high yielding energy crops are grown by their Co-operative farmer members such as beet, maize and rye and these will be delivered to the site and stored in the outside storage clamps and later used in the AD process.

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