A NEW mining facility on the outskirts of Whitby will bring over 1000 jobs and an annual injection of over £1 billion into the local economy.
York Potash has submitted its long-awaited planning application to the National Park which sets out in detail how it intends to build and operate a mine from Dove’s Nest Farm at Sneaton.
The application is for the mine head, which will be based in open fields to the north west of the 100 hectare site. However, development will only be over 4.5 hectares.
It will be made to look like an agricultural building using stone, timber cladding and metal roofing and will act as a canopy for the two mine shafts.
The north shaft will have a cage to transport personnel and equipment in and out while the south shaft will have skips for hoisting polyhalite to the surface where it will then be transported via an underground pipeline and processed at a plant in Teesside.
The shafts will be sunk in 24 hour operations in four phases and power to the site, in the early stages, will come from diesel generators. On site there will be excavator vehicles, dumper and tipper trucks and road sweepers working on a one way circuit around the site.
Access and egress for vehicles coming on and off the site will be via the A171 only.
Once the mine is up and running it will also work on a 24 hour basis as will the pipeline.
Documents within the application say Dove’s Nest has been chosen after lengthy test drilling operations revealed this was the area with the best underground reserves of the mineral and above land provides woodland for screening the development.
Should planning permission be granted, York Potash will enter into a legal agreement with the National Park to provide funding for woodland planting, improving habitats and the junction on the A171 as well as the Mayfield Road traffic lights, local footpaths and bridleways.
Separate negotiations are on-going between York Potash, North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) and Scarborough Borough Council (SBC) as to whether part of the park and ride scheme, being implemented near Cross Butts, can be used by workers to minimise the amount of traffic around the Doves Nest site.