Abattoir plans set to be thrown out

Plans to convert a former bakery in West Bromwich into an abattoir are set to be thrown out over fears about the smells that would be emitted from the premises.

The Firkins factory shop in West Bromwich
The Firkins factory shop in West Bromwich

The plans for the former Firkin's bakery in Black Lake have been recommended for refusal by Sandwell Council officers who have raised fears over the effect it would have on the nearby homes.

The factory would have processed around 2,000 chickens a day had it been given the go ahead but councillors are now likely to throw out the plans at the Sandwell Council planning committee on Wednesday.

Around a third of the factory would have been converted into an abattoir under the plans, which would have created 25 jobs.

However, a report which will be presented to the committee states that the plans would be contrary to planning policies and also have a negative impact on the nearby houses.

It states: "The proposal would cause an adverse impact on the amenity of nearby residential occupiers by reason of strong and unpleasant odour emissions.

"It is pointed out that the nearest housing is less than 50m from the application site and about 80m from the slaughter and processing area.

"In this instance, the head of environmental health does not feel that odour emissions can be controlled to an acceptable level, given the location of the building within an urban/residential area."

It also states that the council received 26 individual objections, as well as a petition with more than 200 signatures objecting to the plans.

The report also states that the area planned for redevelopment is part of a wider area that has been allocated for housing purposes.

It says: "The implementation of the proposed use within the housing allocation would preclude the comprehensive redevelopment of the site for residential development, a loss of a site which has a potential capacity for 64 dwellings."

The former bakery closed in May 2011 following its liquidation, and led to the loss of around 45 jobs.

The closure of the former bakery sparked controversy when some workers were left with a wages backlog, with some owned more than £15,000 including redundancies. Firkins maintained more than 30 shops.

The site has stood empty since its closure and despite efforts, there have been no other plans put forward for its redevelopment.

The majority of the site would remains empty and could still be redeveloped.

See also: Revealed: Former managing director in glue plot to wreck Firkins bakers.

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