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Residents kicking up a stink over incinerator plans in Stonebridge and Harlesden

PUBLISHED: 16:27 18 October 2012

Residents are opposed to the proposals to build a giant recylcing centre at Willesden Junction

Residents are opposed to the proposals to build a giant recylcing centre at Willesden Junction

Jan Nevill

Ealing Council plans to build large site in the Willesden Junction area

Residents have told of their fears after it was revealed there are plans to build a giant incinerator in Harlesden.

If approved, a large site would be constructed in the Willesden Junction area, home to about 1,000 people and nearby Harlesden Primary School.

The “energy recovery centre”, to be considered by Ealing Council, would consist of four 25-metre high chimneys spouting out burnt waste. Two large tanks for decomposing food would also be built.

A large recycling centre already exists on the site and residents told the Times they fear another one would increase traffic and pollution.

Laura Williams, 33, who lives in Minet Avenue, opposite the proposed site, said: “The quality of air is poor as it is – you can sometimes taste the dust in the air around here.

“It’s worrying to think about what they are going to be burning and what will be going into the air as it’s very close to people’s homes.

“Many people have young children who could be breathing it in.”

Cllr Zaffar Van Kalwala, a Stonebridge ward councillor, close to the affected area, said he was very concerned.

“Brent already has some of the worst pollution levels in London. The prospect of extra lorries passing through residential areas and past Harlesden Primary School is very worrying.”

On Saturday, campaigners from Brent and Ealing gathered outside the entrance to the station to protest, ahead of next month’s decision.

Cllr Van Kalwala added: “I will be working closely with residents and both councils to ensure a proper assessment is done of the impact this could have.

“We must make sure the quality of life for residents in some of our most deprived areas is protected.”

Some residents said they were not made aware of the plans. A Brent Council spokesman said it was down to Ealing to inform residents.

He added: “We are considering our own response to the planning application and will be formally responding in advance of the committee meeting.”

A spokesman for Ealing Council said letters were sent to 1,000 Brent residents in August asking for their comments on the application and that although consultation formally closed last week, responses are still welcome until the planning committee meets.

On the proposal, he added: “All waste processing developments must abide by environmental licensing conditions, which control the impact of factors such as noise and environmental pollution on the local area.”

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