Concerned residents of Bulgan Glynn voice their frustration with the council over piggery

By AMY LEWIS

Published 15/12/2015 | 00:00

A view of the piggery from a distance.
A view of the piggery from a distance.

residents of Glynn have expressed their frustration with Wexford County Council for failing to take legal action to enforce its own enforcement notice at a local piggery.

A warning letter was served by the council to Premier Pigs Ltd on August 28, 2014 following complaints that the owner had not built the piggery in accordance with the planning conditions. According to Communications Officer with Wexford County Council David Minogue, an enforcement notice was issued on June 26, 2015.

This Enforcement Notice specifically claimed non-compliance with seven conditions outlined in the planning documents. Wexford County Council said last week they were unable to provide any information about what was stated in the Enforcement Notice.

After an Enforcement Notice is served, a developer is given time to comply or face legal action. A submission of retention of planning was made by the piggery's owners on November 16.

The retention application proposed for the retention of two feed silos instead of the three that were originally proposed. In an accompanying letter to Wexford County Council, Kevin Riordan from Premier Pigs outlined the reasons why the original piggery was adapted on site during construction.

He stated that when the original piggery was being planned, it was designed to accommodate a wet feed system comprising of three grain silos and two number wet tanks, located at the front of the main structure. During the period from original design and final commissioning of the piggery, developments in the pig meat industry focused on the most sustainable feed systems.

The owner said that he adapted the original piggery design to eliminate wet feed and convert to a dry feed system. This required only two grain silos and that planned wet tanks were no longer required. In light of this, the owner stated that he relocated the grain silos to the rear of the piggery so as to maximise energy consumption and reduce the visual impact from the road.

The silos have been the subject of complaint from a representative committee known as 'Concerned Residents Against Piggery', which was established in 2014.

'You can see them from every local road,' claimed committee spokesperson and local resident Tara Cooke.

The six members of the committee have also voiced their concerns to the council over noise pollution which they claim has been created by the facility.

'We were promised decibel meters a while ago by the Council. We still don't have them,' said Tara.

Another issue raised by the committee at the meetings with Council members is a smell they claim emanates from the piggery.

Martina Berry said that residents have filed complaints to the Environmental Section of Wexford County Council about the smell emitting from the facility. Council officials said the issue was investigated and the developer committed to reviewing the management of the ventilation system and monitor odour emissions.

Wexford County Council told the residents they followed up these interventions with two subsequent site visits and said they found no odour issues.

'There was nobody from the Environment Department available at weekends when the stench was at its worst,' claimed Martina.

According to Eilis Kehoe, the odour emitting from the facility has affected her enjoyment of her garden since the facility began operations.

'Wexford County Council have seriously failed in their role of representing the people of Wexford, in particular for this case, the people of Glynn,' added Martina.

Commenting on the issue, John Carley Director of Services for Wexford County Council said:

'There have been a number of interactions between Environment, Planning and those making representations. A number of inspections have been carried out regarding planning and the environment. We are having ongoing discussions with those making representations.'

'Enforcement conditions take a period of time and due process.'

When contacted, Premier Pigs said that they had absolutely no comment to make on the issue, which they said is in the hands of Wexford County Council.

Mr Minogue for Wexford County Council said that 'the details of individual cases cannot be discussed.'

'Wexford County Council operates a robust Planning Enforcement system which ensured all relevant complaints are recorded and investigated in a timely manner. This includes the pursuit of appropriate remedial action where deemed necessary.'

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