Dump Donoghue, Cricklewood and Golders Green neighbours urge council over 'disgusting' waste disposal site that can't find a new home
PUBLISHED: 18:04 29 March 2019 | UPDATED: 18:04 29 March 2019
Neighbours gathered for their second protest in two years demanding to know why a waste disposal site in Cricklewood still hasn't been moved off their doorsteps.
Wearing white overalls and anti-pollution masks, campaigners gathered at PB Donoghue in Claremont Road on Monday last week demanding answers from Barnet Council and chanting: “No ‘ifs’, no ‘buts’ – clean air is a must.”
They last protested in 2017 and there has been no move to relocate the dump in that time.
The waste transfer company said it has been speaking to Barnet Council since 2014 about relocating, but no site has been identified.
Maureen Bagheri, from Dump Donaghue, an organisation made up from the Golders Green Residents Association (GGRA) and the NW2 Collective, said: “We are once again taking to the streets to protest the continual degradation of our lives by PB Donoghue’s waste management site.
“It causes endless dust, noise and large lorry movements and is in the wrong location. It’s larger and heavier HGVs continue to pollute our air, ruin our roads and endanger our health.”
The company arrived in Cricklewood some 35 years ago and in the intervening years has expanded.
It is surrounded by residential streets, five schools and two care homes.
Its fleet of heavy lorries, some of which weigh 34 tonnes, “constantly thunder down” residential roads.
Sue Laxton-Bass, who lives on the adjoining housing estate, said her kitchen and front room backs on to the company’s fence. “We can’t open windows in the summer because of the dust,” she said. “We need to keep a fan going.”
Georgina Siriboe, of GGRA, added: “We’re not against the business; it’s just in the wrong place. When it came here it was a builder’s merchant and a few skips. Now it’s grown.”
Sandra Manns, 75, said: “I blame Barnet Council for what’s happening here. PB Donaghue started with skips; nobody liked it but then Barnet gave them permission to grow into a waste disposal site. There are old people’s homes; schools. It’s disgusting.”
Recent £319million funding from the government for the £4bn Brent Cross Cricklewood Regeneration has raised further questions.
Ms Siriboe added: “They want to be around for all that business.”
Barnet councillor Anne Clarke (Lab), who lives near Cricklewood Station, said: “The heart of the matter is that Donoghue needs to go.
“Residents have been told over and over that they will be relocated as part of the Brent Cross Regeneration – however, it hasn’t been included in the three Compulsory Purchase Order rounds to date.
“There seems no urgency or will to relocate Donoghue by Barnet Council.”
A spokesperson for PB Donaghue acknowledged it was a “dusty industry” adding: “We as a business accept that our business is no longer compatible with the residents of the area.
“We are a protected site within the North London Waste Plan. Policy says this site cannot be closed – it has to be relocated and a provision provided elsewhere.
“There’s a triangle there between the GLA [Greater London Authority], North London Waste [Plan] and the London Borough of Barnet and we’re in the middle of that – PB Donoghue and the local residents. Until that’s unlocked, this situation continues.
“Barnet Council has a responsibility; the residents want relocation, PB Donoghue wants relocation – Barnet Council, you need to come to the table and unlock the deadlock.”
A GLA spokesperson said: “City Hall officers have encouraged Barnet to work with other boroughs to relocate the waste site as part of their new North London Waste Plan.”
A Barnet Council spokesperson said they “understand” and “appreciate” local concerns, adding: “We are working with the GLA to ensure that the area’s contribution to waste management in north London is fully recognised. The potential relocation of PB Donoghue is a key part of these discussions.
“In the meantime, we will continue to work with local residents and PB Donoghue to ensure they remain a responsible neighbour by operating within their licensing conditions, as well as ensuring there are adequate controls on site.”