Council acts on hazard fears at former quarry

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a developer has been told to cease digging up land at a former quarry over fears of a potential health risk.

Wakefield Council confirmed it had taken action after receiving complaints about the former Jackson’s Quarry site, on Womersley Road, Knottingley.

Noble Homes was carrying out investigation works at the site, which previously had planning permission for 165 homes.

The company agreed to cover the area it dug up with uncontaminated soil, Wakefield Council said.

Sarah Pearson, the council’s service director for economic growth and housing, said: “Following complaints about investigation works taking place at Jackson’s Quarry site in Knottingley, we have requested that the developer replaces the materials disturbed by their works.

“The developer has agreed to immediately cover the surface of the site with clean, inert soils to limit any potential risk to the public.

“We would like to reassure local residents that this is just a precautionary measure.

“We are continuing to monitor the site and will take further action if necessary.”

Planning permission for a housing development was granted for the site in 2009 and was renewed in 2013, but has since expired.

A planning report from 2013 said the old quarry was land-filled with domestic, commercial and industrial waste in the 1960s and 1970s.

At the time, adequate measures were in place to prevent any risks if the housing development went ahead.

The Express contacted Castleford-based Noble Homes by telephone and e-mail but had not received a comment at the time of writing.

Wakefield Council said the former quarry site had been identified for possible housing development in its Local Development Plan.