14 Aug 2022

Golden Pages profile used as evidence in planning decision

A DECISION by An Bord Pleanála regarding a Kilkenny skip business was based partly on information provided on the Golden Pages website.

A DECISION by An Bord Pleanála regarding a Kilkenny skip business was based partly on information provided on the Golden Pages website.

Kealy Skip Hire, which started out as a sand and gravel business in the 1950s, has been operating at Parkmore on the Callan Road, Kilkenny for three generations. The company has a waste collection permit allowing it to transfer waste to authorised third-party sites, but it applied to Kilkenny County Council last year to bring its planning up to date in order to get a waste facility permit for waste activity on its own site.

The council turned down its application to be considered “exempted development” as an extension of the original sand and gravel operation, however, and the company appealed the decision to An Bord Pleanála. The board upheld the council’s decision.

The company’s application form explained that a sand and gravel business had been in operation at the site since before 1957 and that around 1968 or 1969 the site also began operation as a waste facility.

“It is stated ... that the referrer intends to continue operating the skip hire business that was set up by his father and that he would like to regulate the planning status of the site and to apply for a waste facility permit,” according to An Bord Pleanála.

The applicant described the business as “a very small scale waste facility, handling in the region of 1,000 tonnes of waste per annum.”

However, the council and then the board referred to a company profile for Kealy Skip Hire on the Golden Pages website “seemingly provided by themselves, stating that they ‘offer a variety of domestic and commercial waste services, ranging from the household wheelie bin to the large commercial skip…. our services include cardboard, paper and plastic recycling, composting, commercial bag collection, sludge and sewerage disposal, waste profiling service, and domestic refuse and recycling collection.”

An Bord Pleanála’s inspector also wrote: “Based on my site inspection it appears that the ‘recycling service’ in the referrer’s description relates to a client collection service, bringing the materials to the referral site and then transporting them onwards to a recycling facility. However, also based on my site inspection and on the referrer’s description, the skip business is wider ranging,” consisting “primarily, of the disorderly storage of skips and materials on site.”

“By comparison with the previous sand and gravel operation, it is injurious to visual amenity, has implications in terms of potential pollution and requires a waste facility permit,” the inspector wrote.

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