Monday, 26 November 2012

Drainage up to the job?

This is the third time since "Thunder Thursday" that the drains outside of the Estates North entrance have failed to cope with heavy rain. It is becoming far too regular and this time it has even made the local Tyne Tees News! (North East Tonight)  link to TyneTees
What has it got to do with the current application? Well should something happen on the site and the tanks are compromised the drains will not cope with xxx gallons of fuel currently stored there. Compounding this is the fact that Pars application involves extra drainage connected to the original ones. Surely this is ludicrous. Not to mention the laying of more concrete will increase the run off onto this road and surrounding area.

This was just three tankers

Police hunt reckless arsonists

From the Daily Mail 19th November 2012

Friday, 1 June 2012

Update - Jubilee edition

  • We haven’t published much over the last couple of days as publicly things have been relatively quiet, however it has been pretty busy behind the scenes.
  • Our local branch of the Labour Party voted unanimously to oppose the Par Petroleum planning application, and to write to the planning authority, objecting to the development in the strongest possible terms. The branch also voted unanimously to write to the the Leader of Durham County Council, Cllr Simon Henig, and to the the Executive and General Management Committee of the Durham Constituency Labour Party, asking for their support in opposing the proposal.
  • If you objected by the 23rd May, you will have received an acknowledgement from the Head of Planning by now. Early indications are that the number of individual objections is substantial, 200+. They also cover a wide range of issues for consideration, which is helpful. Remember if you haven’t objected then the planning team should accept objections up to the Committee Hearing date.
  • Par Petroleum carried out further works on the land last week, the planning team have been informed of this.
  • We are planning a meeting with the Town Planner including a site visit over the next week or so.
  • Several of your neighbours, with detailed knowledge of planning issues have been working tirelessly to ensure every minute detail of the planning application has been satisfactorily addressed by  the Planning Team.
  • Please keep a tentative note in your Diary for Thursday 28th June 14:00. That is the date of the next planning meeting and this application could be on the agenda. Papers are usually released 5 days prior to the meeting. If you have objected you will recieve notice by mail. We need a show of strength at the hearing.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Close of play today is another deadline for objections and we urge those who have not objected and feel they want to, do it before 17:00 today. The planning team should accept objections up to the committee date but today is another admin point, the Planning Team will acknowledge your objection.
  • Be objective not subjective or it will be disregarded.
  • Stick to planning issues, not views and depreciation.
  • Evidence based objections are useful so back up your facts.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Residents fight petrol depot expansion plan (From Durham Times)

Residents fight petrol depot expansion plan (From Durham Times)

Residents' lorry fight victory (From Durham Times 2003)

Residents' lorry fight victory (From Durham Times)


Close of play tomorrow is another deadline for objections and we urge those who have not objected and feel they want to, do it today or before 17:00 tomorrow. The planning team should accept objections up to the committee date but the 23rd is another admin point, they will acknowledge your objection.
  • Be objective not subjective or it will be disregarded.
  • Stick to planning issues, not views and depreciation.
  • Evidence based objections are useful so back up your facts.
There is a small number of residents who have expressed interest in presenting at the planning committee hearing. We need to coordinate that response, if you wish to present to the committee then please contact us on we can then coordinate our objection. If we receive no further requests then we will organise the presentation with the Town Planner we have hired without delay. If you do not want to speak publicly but have a skill set we can make use of then please get in touch.

What we do need is a show of support on the day of the hearing. I have it on good authority that this does help our case. So please watch this space as apprently we do not receive much notice. If you could sacrifice an afternoon then it would be greatly appreciated as it will show the Committee members how strongly Woodstone Village feel about this planning application.
Potential dates for the North Durham Planning Committe to sit are:-
  • 31st May 2012 (Thursday)
  • 28th June 2012 (Thursday)
So please make a tentative note in your diary.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Some Facts

Kerosene-Key Points
Kerosene is a major component (> 60%) of aviation (jet) fuels.
  • Flammable
  • Mixtures of kerosene vapour and air are explosive
  • In the event of a fire involving kerosene, use normal foam and normal fire kit with breathing apparatus
  • Serious lung injury may occur if droplets of kerosene are inhaled e.g. if vomiting occurs after ingestion
  • Acute and chronic exposure to kerosene may cause irritability, restlessness, drowsiness, convulsions, coma and death
  • Irritating to eyes and skin
  • The most common health effect associated with prolonged kerosene exposure is dermatitis
  • Kerosene does not affect human reproduction or development
  • Kerosene is not considered to be carcinogenic to humans
  • Avoid release into the environment
  • Inform Environment Agency of substantial incidents
  • Safety precautions

You can still object

Don't forget you can still object up to 23rd May 2012 for Local Residents. So if you haven't and intend to then please do so. Remember an effective objection is objective not subjective and evidence based.


OK it was suggested at the Residents meeting that some people may like to contribute to the costs incurred by the campaign. The bulk of which is around the Town Planner's services. There is a donate button on the site now, you can pay by credit card or a paypal account if you have one. Anything helps and anything is greatly appreciated. Costs to date, projected costs and donations received are listed at the bttom of the site.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Public speaking at DCC's central & area planning committee


How will interested parties find out about the committee date?
A letter will be sent to all those that have made representations on an application, and to the agent/applicant to advise them of the date of the committee meeting.

When do interested parties have to register to speak?
No later than noon on the last working day prior to the committee.

Who do they register to speak with?

Planning Committee representation

The advice we have received is as follows-
Anyone who writes in to the Council should be notified of the date and time of the planning committee.  There is then usually a requirement to notify the committee clerk that you want to attend and  speak .  Councillors will not usually want to hear from more than 2 or three objectors on the day and even then they should seek to cover different issues so a degree of coordination as to who is going to say what would be useful. 
In light of this advice we would be very interested to hear from those who have intention to speak or would like to support a committee in some way with their own skills. This will then allow us to coordinate our response fully. If you would like to be involved with the "Presentation Committee" Then please let me know by E Mail to We will then get together to discuss strategy.
NOTE: A date hasn’t yet been set for when this application should go to committee but it is likely to go to the Area Planning Committee (North).  It next meets on 31th May and then  28th June, at 2pm.  I suspect June date will be more likely.  Venue varies

You can still object

OBJECTIONS: The 15th May deadline reflects the minimum statutory  consultation period and the Council will in practice take account of representations submitted up until the Committee Date.
It would appear from the Web portal that the 15th May was a deadline for "Neighbours" (the few who were actually sent a letter about the planning application) 21 days from the date they sent out the letters. The 23rd May is 21 days since the press notice and lamp post note.
If you have not objected or know someone who intended to ,now you can. Each adult within the hosehold is allowed to object.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Update Monday 14th May

Yet again another fantastic turn out from locals at our Residents Meeting held in Fencehouses community centre with over a 120 people in attendance to lend their support. We were joined by our local Councillor Audrey Willis and Parish Councillor Guy Starkey. Local MP Kevan Jones sent his apologies but his letter on behalf of his constituents to the Durham County Council planning team was made available for people to read at his request.

Press Links

The Northern Echo story link
The Journal story link
The Chronicle

Neighbours campaign against fuel depot plans - Local - Sunderland Echo

Neighbours campaign against fuel depot plans - Local - Sunderland Echo

Thursday, 10 May 2012


Wow!!! What a response tonight. Many thanks to all those who turned up for the photograph in the rain - we estimate about 75. This just goes to show how strongly local people feel about the planning application submitted to Durham County Council by Par Petroleum.
Just a note to say that our story will be in the Journal on Saturday.

Woodlea Objects

Woodlea Primary School has submitted an objection to the PAR Petroleum planning application.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Residents meeting

Woodstone Village Residents are invited to a meeting to discuss the Par Petroleum planning application. The meeting is scheduled for Monday 14th May 2012 at 18:30-19:30. The location is Fencehouses Community Centre, Main hall. Councillor Audrey Willis will be attending and Kevan Jones MP has been invited.

Need you for photo!

We have met with several newsapapers today. The Sunderland Echo is going to come out and take some photos tomorrow (Thursday 10th May 2012). We need as many people as possible to attend. If possible can we meet at Glamis Court entrance (near the northern entrance to the estate) at 18:00. - BRING A BROLLY

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Update Tuesday 8th May 2012

Update Tuesday 8th May. 17.00 hours.

Hi all

Firstly both Andrew and I wanted to thank you for your support. Whilst we are not surprised by the level of concern, it is reassuring that so many people have e- mailed us offering to help. We will obviously utilise as many people in our quest, but for the time being we are attempting to maintain a little bit of command and control to ensure we can effectively co-ordinate our approach (We are not control freaks, honestly!!!!!)

Secondly we are making progress in our quest to halt this ridiculous planning application.

Press Release 08/05/2012


Residents Oppose Planning Application

Local residents from the Woodstone Village area have united to oppose a planning application submitted to Durham County Council by local petrol distribution company Par Petroleum.

The planning application which is supported by the local planning team at Durham County Council, states that the company must expand its operations on the former Lumley Sixth Pit site in order to satisfy a new contract which the company has recently been awarded to store and distribute highly flammable aviation fuel.

Delegated Powers

We were informed this morning that the decision over the planning application would be decided under "Delegated Powers". This would be a disaster for our campaign limiting any chance of presenting our concerns in a public forum. Fortunately this has been turned around today by local Councillors ensuring that our case can be heard by sending it to committee.

Support from local Councillor

Support from local Councillor, Audrey Willis.
Councillor Willis fully supports our Objection and feels that it is unacceptable for the council to even think about giving permission for this horrendous planning application.
Councillor Willis has advised that we organise a public meeting inviting herself and Kevan Jones MP and the Little Lumley Parish.

Remember Buncefield?

OK its on a different scale but are we going to learn from our mistakes or not?
Recommendations made on land use planning and the control of societal risk around major hazard sites, produced by the Buncefield Major Incident Investigation Board after the catastrophic fire at the Buncefield Oil Storage depot in 2005. This report clearly describes the need for sensible planning approaches to ensure safety and protection around major hazard sites as well as learning from the mistakes which contributed to this major incident in order to protect those who live near to or occupy surrounding areas. This includes limiting operations or restricting further expansion, where necessary.
Link to the report
There is a growing opinion that should this application be successful then Par Petroleum will then apply to substantially increase its capacity and therefore the risk!

Kevan Jones MP

We met with Kevan Jones MP on 5th May 2012 and he has pledged his support to the campaign. He basically urged as many residents as possible to OBJECT to the planning application. WV Residents found Kevan to be extriemely concerned about this issue and genuinely supportive.

Par Petroleum

Par Petroleum has applied for planning permission to expand their site opposite YOUR village.
They have purchased the land and plan to move into the GREEN BELT at the Northern entrance to the main estate.
They are planning to:-
  • MOVE INTO THE GREEN BELT & CUT DOWN TREES (they have already started this)
It gets worse!
  • Your County Councils planning section supports the application! They haven’t even considered your safety!
  • The current local disaster plan recommends an exclusion zone of 1KM from the site in the event of an accident. They estimate about 15 fatalities and they want to make it bigger and move it closer to you!
Hasn’t this land given enough, let it be!
  • Deep coal mine, quarry, brick works and landfill.  Hasn’t this land served it’s time the green belt is reclaimed land. Let it be, don’t turn it back into a brown field site!
  • Lots of local residents use the land on a daily basis to access the reclaimed land fill to walk their pets. Wildlife is returning to the area this proposed development is a retrograde step.

Object to Planning Application

PAR Petroleum has submitted a planning application to expand their site.

You can access the planning application on-line at:

Click [Planning], Click [Application Search], Enter the code: 2/12/00078/FUL, Click [Search]
We need as many people as possible to object to this application.

You can object in writing by 15th May 2012to:-

Mr. S France
Senior Planning Officer
Planning Development North
PO Box 255
Chester le Street
County Durham

RE: Application Number: 2/12/00078/FUL
Proposal: Extension to Vehicle Storage Depot Lumley Sixth Pit Industrial Estate, Lumley Sixth Pit Fence Houses, Durham.