24/7 operation for Wigan bakery site despite fears
A baking ingredients factory located 60 metres away from homes has been given the green light by Wigan Council to become a 24-hour operation.
The Zeelandia Flemings factory in Ashton-in-Makerfield has been granted planning permission to extend its existing industrial unit in Lockett Road.
The business based off Bryn Road at the South Lancashire Industrial Estate will also be allowed to operate 24-hours a day between Monday and Friday.
There will also be occasional weekend work due to seasonal demands – but this will be limited to 7am and 3pm on Saturdays with no work on Sundays.
The number of deliveries every day will increase from nine to 16, but they will be spread out throughout the working day and would not take place at night.
The nearest residential properties are 60 metres away from the factory.
Freezer units, which residents have complained cause noise disturbance, will be relocated as part of the expansion plans, creating concerns for neighbours.
But speaking on behalf of the business at a planning committee meeting on Tuesday (July 13), David Turnock said new measures will reduce noise levels.
He said: “The proposed acoustic measures for both the new extension and the existing plant will improve the current situation.
“This includes the existing freezer unit that local residents have commented upon.
“The mitigation measures will identify limits for the control of these noise emissions.
“With these measures in place, our assessment is that the noise emissions associated with the proposals can be controlled to a level below the existing background sound levels at the nearest houses.”
The business has been operating on this site for around 25 years and since 2017, it has invested around £350,000 a year into new plant improvements.
The expansion is expected to protect existing employees, create at least 20 new jobs and potentially grow further in the years to come, Mr Turnock said.
The planning agent said the development, a two-storey extension which is required to accommodate new larger equipment to allow production output to be increased, is part of a multi-million pound investment into the company.
Ince councillor Janice Sharratt said she lives ‘within touching distance’ of a similar company, and described the noise created by it as ‘horrendous’.
However, environmental protection officer Michaela Guest said the council is confident that the company will control the noise to an acceptable level.
The application was unanimously approved by the planning committee.
Leigh East councillor Fred Walker said: “Thank you for expanding your business. We welcome your continued expansion in the Wigan area.”
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