English Heritage hits out at plans to build incinerator in Hatfield

PUBLISHED: 10:44 13 August 2012 | UPDATED: 10:48 13 August 2012

An artist's impression of the New Barnfield incinerator from the air

An artist's impression of the New Barnfield incinerator from the air


AN incinerator in Hatfield would have an “alien and disturbing” impact on nearby historical landmarks.

That is the view of English Heritage, which has recommended Veolia Environmental Services’ bid for a 380,000-tonne waste burner in New Barnfield be turned down by Hertfordshire County Council.

The organisation was responding to a visual impact assessment carried out by Veolia in May, when a blimp was flown 75ft above the proposed site to demonstrate the height of the flues.

And having analysed the photos of the blimp taken from Hatfield House, Brocket Hall and Gobions Folly Arch, near Brookmans Park, English Heritage has joined thousands of residents in opposing the incinerator.

An English Heritage spokeswoman said: “We believe the plans would cause substantial harm to Hatfield House and its park, as well as damaging the settings of a number of other important historic sites.

“Hatfield House, Hatfield House Park and the Old Palace of Hatfield are of outstanding aesthetic and historical importance.

“The incinerator, a vast industrial structure, would be alien and disturbing.

“Its presence on the horizon, the impact of its flue on the skyline, and night time operation and lighting, would all severely degrade the character of the exceptional historic landscape of the park, and the setting of the equally exceptional buildings within it.

“English Heritage has recommended that this application is refused.”

The news was welcomed by anti-incinerator campaign group Hatfield Against Incineration (HAI).

HAI’s Paul Zukowskyj said: “It’s another nail in the coffin of this absurd plan.

“Given the number of objections and the sheer weight of evidence that this plan has no future, I find it unbelievable the county council are convinced this is what Hertfordshire needs. It needs it like a hole in the head.”

A spokeswoman for Veolia said: “The county council sought clarification from Veolia regarding issues raised by English Heritage.

“Our response included an additional report further assessing the setting, significance and impact of the proposals on heritage assets.

“It’s now for the planning authority to consider our application alongside representations from consultees, including English Heritage.”

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