Grant Shapps wants Eric Pickles to call in Hertfordshire EfW


Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps has written to Communities Secretary Eric Pickles asking him to call in the planning approval given to an energy from waste facility in Hertfordshire.

Veolia Environmental Services wishes to build the energy from waste plant that will handle 380,000 tonnes of waste per year, generating 26.6MW of energy at Barnfield, near Hatfield.


Hertfordshire County Council this week gave planning permission for the facility after county councillors voted 11 to four in favour of granting consent.

Local MP for Welwyn Hatfield Grant Shapps said after the decision that he had written to the Communities Secretary Eric Pickles urging him to call in the decision for further scrutiny by his inspectors.

Grant Shapps is also chairman of the local opposition group New Barnfield Trust.

He said: “Recycling rates in Welwyn Hatfield have already exceeded the rates they thought they would be in 2020 and that is going to be replicated across Hertfordshire.

“This isn’t the end of the road. I have already written to the Secretary of State asking him to call in this decision and look at it again.

“Even after that, the New Barnfield Trust has raised £60,000 to fight this at judicial review because we think that the process itself has been faulty.”

Chair of the Development Control Committee at the council Bryan Hammond, and one of the councillors who voted in favour of the facility, said that he was certain the scheme would be called in by the Communities Secretary but that Hertfordshire had to manage its own waste.

He added: “We have been exporting waste to Bedford, to Cambridge, to north London and parts of Berkshire for so long that quite correctly we are under pressure to organise it ourselves within the county.”

Opponents against the facility have said it should not be located on its current site which is next to a special school, and have also cited noise and air pollution as well as an increase in lorry movements as the reason behind their opposition.