Council probes rat infestation

WASTE MOUNTAIN: The site at Oxford Mill Waste Transfer Station
WASTE MOUNTAIN: The site at Oxford Mill Waste Transfer Station
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A stink has been kicked up over a waste centre, which neighbours believe is attracting rats to a largely residential area.

The Oxford Mill Waste Transfer Station in Burnley Wood has been visited by the Environment Agency after residents nearby complained it was a health hazard.

County Coun. Margaret Brindle, who visited the site at the corner of Parliament Street and Oxford Road, said: “The Oxford Mill building is unsuitable and not fit for purpose. It sits in a residential area, unacceptably close to residents and Springfield Primary School.

“In my opinion, it poses health issues and is detrimental to the wellbeing of children. I also have serious concerns over road safety.

“Following complaints I visited the site with the Environment Agency and ward councillors.

“We were accompanied by residents who had raised issues about environmental, social and health conditions, vermin infestation and working practices.

“Some action had been taken by Burnley Borough Council to remedy the rat infestation, but only in relation to homes. There was also an obnoxious smell emanating from the waste in Oxford Mill.”

Lancashire County Council, the planning authority for waste, gave permission for the operation in the early 1990s, and is responsible for enforcing planning controls.

However, most of the issues raised about this site relate to controls enforced by the Environment Agency.

Stuart Perigo, head of development management for Lancashire County Council, said: “We have received a complaint and are actively looking into it in close liaison with the Environment Agency to ensure the site is operating within planning and permitting controls.”