31 May 1996

Villager fury at remains dump

RESIDENTS in the Glos villages of Quedgeley and Hardwicke are up in arms over the dumping of the rendered remains of cattle at a nearby former RAF base.

Up to 25 lorries a day are delivering meat and bonemeal from cattle destroyed under the 30-months disposal scheme. But local residents are furious that the material is being tipped into unrefrigerated hangers where it will be stored until it can be incinerated.

At a public meeting on Tuesday night, attended by about 200 people, concerns about smell and vermin were raised. Worries also surfaced about the large flocks of birds circling around the hangers and the possibility of them transferring material from the stores to surrounding countryside.

Bob Ellerby, a councillor on Stroud district council, said rendered material from all over the country was being sent to the site.

He also accused MAFF of being extremely secretive and said the district council had not been told in advance that the site was to be used as a dump. "MAFF does not know exactly what the BSE agent is or how it can be destroyed. Its assertions that this rendered material is safe is based on wishful thinking rather than any scientific evidence and we find that extremely disturbing," he said.

Cllr Ellerby plans to send a list of questions to MAFF shortly and a residents committee will meet later this week to discuss what action needs to be taken to stop the dumping.

But local NFU secretary John Roach said the union saw no problems with meat and bonemeal being stored. And while he appreciated the residents fears, he felt they were irrational and showed no understanding of BSE. &#42