Waste & wood recycling site in St Austell

Case Study>> Waste & Recycling>> Higher Brynn, St Austell, Cornwall

Client>> Green Waste Company

Project>> Composting and Wood Waste Recycling Facility


The site is located in open countryside just off the old A30, which has now been by-passed by the recent re-alignment to provide a dual-carriageway and access roundabouts.

The application submitted in December 2010 sought permission for the importation and processing of a total of 40,000 tonnes of waste each year, of which 10,000 tonnes would be wood waste, 10,000 tonnes of green waste and the balance food waste.  The latter would be treated ‘in-vessel’ in composting tunnels alongside a dedicated food waste reception building.  The green waste would be composted in an outside yard, in windrows, with wood waste being processed in an adjoining yard area.

Despite several issues, there were few objections to the application and Cornwall Council issued the planning permission in April 2011. The Council agreed that the development would be an appropriate use of the land; that there were no conflicts with adopted policy and that all issues that might impact on local amenity could be controlled by means of appropriate planning conditions.

Following the grant of planning permission, an application was submitted to the Environment Agency for an Environmental Permit for the green waste and wood waste operations, following a decision by the applicants to defer the in-vessel composting operations to a later phase of development. At the same time, the details required to discharge conditions prior to the commencement of development were submitted to Cornwall Council for approval; all were approved in May 2011.

The site became operational in 2012 and in 2016 the success of the site design was recognised in the recently awarded Lets Recycle Awards, where it was shortlisted under the category ‘Design of a Waste Management Facility’.