Large-scale farm projects step closer to being built

Two large-scale farming proposals which have been embroiled in years of planning tussles have taken further steps toward becoming reality this week.

Plans for a 2,500-sow pig farm at Foston, Derbyshire, were finally submitted to the county council on Tuesday (30 September) after a four-year planning battle.

The proposed development has been dogged by objections from residents and campaign groups opposed to large-scale farming.

See also: Opinion: Large-scale farm opponents go head to head

Midland Pig Producers (MPP), the firm behind the unit, said it had taken into account suggestions from a series of open meetings. Local residents were particularly concerned about odours and pollution.

A spokeswoman said MPP had added stacks to odour control systems to release clean air above building height and a storm tank with inceptor to deliver clean water run-off and the incorporation of a blending unit inside the service building rather than by digesters.

Meanwhile in Wales, excavation work is under way at the site of a 1,000-cow dairy unit that has taken six years of planning.

An 11m-high earth bund has been created at Lower Leighton Farm to act as a barrier between the site and the village of Leighton, near Welshpool.

Dairy farmer Fraser Jones, who fought for six years to get his plan approved, said he was relieved that building work had started.

“The past six years have been a very trying time but we are finally making progress. We only lost a few days in August because of rain, the weather has been on our side,” said Mr Jones, who predicts that the dairy will be operational within 12 months.

The unit will consist of three cubicle buildings, collecting yards and a 72-point Westphalia rotary parlour.

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