Mark Reckless MP, local councillors and residents have welcomed the news that Peel Ports is to cease operation of the wood chip processing and storage facility in Chatham Docks from March, and that the site will be relocated away from Medway.
Following numerous complaints by residents last year when a large stockpile of wood chip material which had built up at Chatham Docks began to decompose causing an acrid smell in the area, Peel Ports have agreed to terminate the lease for the biomass operation located at Berth 8 in Chatham Docks.
Speaking after hearing the news, Mark Reckless said:
“This is welcome news for all the residents on St Mary’s Island and the surrounding affected areas who contacted me regarding this issue. Having worked closely with local councillors and St Mary’s Island Residents Association on this unfortunate matter for some months, I am delighted that it now looks like being resolved.
Peel Ports should be commended for showing that they have listened to residents’ concerns and are acting as a good neighbour. I am sure many on St. Mary’s Island will breathe a huge sigh of relief upon hearing this news.”
Cllr Andrew Mackness, Conservative member for River Ward, said:
“I am pleased and relieved that, following much negotiation, Peel Land and Property, Peel Energy, and Peel Ports have listened to the community and been persuaded to close their wood processing and storage facility on Chatham Docks by the end of March.
Both Mark Reckless and I have strongly supported the campaign against this operation and have worked tirelessly with St Mary’s Island Residents Association (SMIRA) to ensure that the serious problems and concerns associated with the odours and dust, and the possible health implications of this operation are resolved with this decision.
We would also like to thank the Chairman of SMIRA for his drive and determination in helping deliver such a positive outcome.”