Scores object to power plant proposal for Sheffield suburb

The site of the proposed power plant in Orgreave Road.
The site of the proposed power plant in Orgreave Road.
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More than 90 people have objected to a proposal to build a gas power plant in the middle of a Sheffield suburb.

Shovel Ready Ltd wants to develop a piece of wasteland off Orgreave Road in Handsworth.

The land is currently vacant.

The land is currently vacant.

According to the planning application, gas would be fed to the plant through an underground pipeline. When electricity is required by the National Grid, the plant would be able to produce up to 20MW of energy.

The land is vacant and overgrown, but was once home to an Asda supermarket.

The development would comprise eight gas engine units, each 3.2 metres high and with a chimney on top taking the total height to 6.7 metres.

There would also be a transformer at just under five metres in height, and a two metre fence around the site.

More than 90 people have objected.

More than 90 people have objected.

The application says the equipment would be screened from view by ‘significant’ landscaping, and CCTV and lighting would help with security.

A report from environmental consultant Enzygo says the design is ‘in keeping with the context and nature of the site’.

The application adds: "The facility would provide a key source of flexibility to help address some of the challenges associated with the transition to a low-carbon electricity sector.

"By being able to generate energy immediately and for a short length of time, the development will help the energy sector cope with the peaks in demand for energy they face."

But many people living nearby are not happy with the plans.

Among the 91 people to register their objections so far is Amanda Gipson, who has lived opposite the land in Rotherham Road for 15 years.

She said she did not think the ‘importance’ of the site had been ‘fully assessed’.

Amanda said a variety of moth and butterfly species lived there, along with various beetles.

“I am sure that the site could be redevloped less aggressively and more symp-athetically if some other proposals emerged, and maybe the timeline of the combined nearby developments could also be taken into account so that the area is affected more gradually, giving wildlife a better chance of adjusting,” she said.

David Marshall of Kirkdale Drive added: “The level of development in the area is becoming critical.

“There are more cars using Rotherham Road and the surrounding area due to additional housing and further development of commercial units and the technology business park.

“The other improvements in the area I agree with. We need homes and jobs. We do not need additional pollution.”

And Joanne Cook of Highfield Lane said: “Surely we have industrial estates where it would be more appropriately placed, not in the middle of a housing estate where families want to live dust-, dirt-, pollution-, traffic- and noise-free.”