Quarry operator denies causing water problems

Blaxter Quarry at Elsdon
Blaxter Quarry at Elsdon

A quarry operator has said it is not responsible for contaminating the water supply of nearby residents.

Last week, the Gazette reported that the owners of two houses next to Blaxter Quarry, in Elsdon, have had unsafe water for more than a year.

But Paul Allison, managing director of William Allison and Sons, operators of the site, said the work they are carrying out is within planning guidelines and ‘to our knowledge having no effect at all on the spring water (which the residents enjoy free of charge)’.

“It has been suggested by a local source that the water was never intended/guaranteed to be of drinking quality and that if the residents want clean drinking water they should do what the rest of the locals have to do and pay for it.”

He added that despite council action against a breach of conditions, he was ‘advised that the council’s action was contentious’, but chose to carry out remedial work as ‘it was far cheaper than it would be to challenge the notice in court’.

But Mr Simpson, owner of Blaxter House, whose property has been affected, said: “Mr Allison’s complete denial of the situation is typical of the way he’s handled things for the last 14 months, and it’s made our lives absolutely miserable.”

He added that The Environment Agency, the council and an independent water specialist have all confirmed that problems have been caused because the quarry breached consents.