Since the Planning Inspector agreed that Jack Allen holdings could have planning permission to build a waste plant in Garston (near the Cressington Heath and Cressington Grange housing developments) , residents have been worrying about how things would develop.
(Efforts have still been going on to try to prevent this , including urging the City Council Administration to look for other sites, something I am told they are doing)
However fears have been hightened this week by an incident at a plant in South Yorkshire. An explosion has led to a death and to huge amounts of damage. The plant uses autoclave technology (the same as that to be used in Garston). You can read more about the story here ( the use of the word incinerator tends to be media shorthand for any sort of factory that processes waste these days so please bear that in mind!)
Now imagine you live just over 100 yards from the site (which some people do). How would you feel if you thought the thing might explode?
Of course it would be wrong to make people uneccesarily scared. But it's clear to me that this incident needs to be investigated, not just in terms of what happened in Rotherham but what it means for other plants using the autoclave technology.
Residents living near the plant site have started to write letters asking for the potential safety of the Garston site to be looked at again in the context of the Rotherham explosion. It strikes me too that it can't be in Jack Allen Holdings' interests for uncertainty and fear to develop around this and Jack Allen should be in the forefront of those insisting on a safety review.
We, that is the Lib Dem Councillor and others who've been invovled in trying to resist this scheme, will be working with residents to see that Garston isn't put at risk of a big explosion.