Saredon Hill Quarry has been operating for 60 years and the current planning permission for the main part of the site requires quarrying of sand and gravel to stop by the end of 2028.
On Thursday (October 6) Staffordshire County Council’s planning committee gave the green light for a southern extension to the quarry near Cannock. The current site is around 28 hectares (69.2 acres) in size and the proposed extension area involves eight hectares (19.8 acres).
A report to the committee said: “The applicant anticipates that the quarry’s permitted reserves will be exhausted by the end of this year and now seeks planning permission to extract sand and gravel reserves within an area allocated in the Minerals Local Plan and adjacent to the southern boundary of the quarry. The application site includes existing operational parts of Saredon Quarry that would be used to process and stockpile sand and gravel extracted from the proposed extension area.
“It is proposed to extract three million tonnes of sand and gravel from the southern extension following the exhaustion of permitted reserves within the existing quarry.
“Extraction would take place over a period up to seven years with rates of output ranging from 400,000 to 500,000 tonnes per annum. This is likely to result in mineral extraction operations extending beyond the current cessation deadline of 31 December 2028 by up to two years.
“It is anticipated that the sand and gravel would be used to supply existing markets which include concrete producers as well as general building merchants. Some of the mineral would also be used to supply the concrete plant at the quarry, operated by Breedon Group.”
Committee members heard at Thursday’s meeting that there had been no objections to the latest application from residents or statutory consultees.
Councillor Mike Sutherland said: “It is rare we see an application like this where we see no objections – 41 letters were sent out with no responses.”
Robert Williams, who spoke in support of the application, said: “I have sat here before many times. Thank you to your former committee members who originally took a big act of faith in terms of giving permission to the original quarry.
“During those debates I recall sitting here when there were 90 people sat behind me, here to protest against that application. That quarry has grown, the company has grown and it has become quite an asset.”