Council to decide Denby mine plan

Neil Paget at the site of the Denby opencast mine access will be.
Neil Paget at the site of the Denby opencast mine access will be.

Protestors against a 400,000 tonne mine at Denby have gained the support of a national lobbying group against coal extraction.

The Loose Anti-Opencasting Network (LAON) helps resident groups all over the country fight large scale mining plans.

Now campaigners in Denby and Smalley have enlisted its help to put a stop to LEM Resources proposals to mine George Farm over three years.

Derbyshire County Council is due to make a decision on the application at County Hall, Matlock on Monday.

Neil Paget of the Smalley Action Group against open casting says the extra 64 vehicle movements it would create daily on the A608 at Smalley would cause untold misery for villagers there - a year after it lost the fight to stop UK Coal extending its Lodge House site by 192 acres.

He said: “Having them on board is going to be a boost, it’s good that they will be supporting us in fighting this.

“We are hoping for a refusal by Derbyshire County Council.”

Mr Paget has urged anyone concerned about the plan to attend a site meeting on Monday at 11am by the proposed entrance to the mine at the former Spice Mistress restaurant on Main Road, Smalley. Councillors and county council officers will be there to assess the site before they vote on the application at around 2pm.

Steve Leary of LAON said the group is supporting Smalley Action Group because LEM Resources plans are 
‘unnecessary’.

He said power stations, such as Drax in Yorkshire, are phasing out coal in favour of biomass fuels and the government is already winding down its reliance on the extracted fossils fuel.

He said: “The new evidence LAON has presented shows why coal for power generation purposes is becoming history.

“Is four shiploads of coal worth years of disturbance plus innumerable traffic movements by road?”

LEM Resources says the mine would create 50 jobs.