Register of advice

The list below is a record of advice the Planning Inspectorate has provided in respect of the Planning Act 2008 process.

There is a statutory duty under section 51 of the Planning Act 2008 to record the advice that is given in relation to an application or a potential application and to make this publicly available. Advice we have provided is recorded below together with the name of the person or organisation who asked for the advice and the project it relates to. The privacy of any other personal information will be protected in accordance with our Information Charter which you should view before sending information to the Planning Inspectorate.

Note that after a project page has been created for a particular application, any advice provided that relates to it will also be published under the ‘s51 advice’ tab on the relevant project page.

Advice given between between 1 October 2009 and 14 April 2015 has been archived. View the archived advice.

Enquiry received via email

Oikos Marine & South Side Development

03 June 2021
Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP - anon.


Dear Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP I am writing with regards to the proposed expansion of the Oikos facility located in Canvey Island to express my concerns and state my objection to it. As a resident of Canvey, I have serious concerns over our safety should an event like Buncefield repeat itself. During an online Q&A session that I joined I asked if they can guarantee our safety – and Oikos said they cannot. They can make it “as safe as possible” which isn’t good enough given the amount of hazardous materials they are planning on storing (they want to double the storage). There are all types of issues that could arise from a huge explosion – including its proximity to the sea (and the risk of causing a flood) to the fact there is a Calor Gas facility right next door to Oikos! I also asked about an evacuation plan in the event of an “accident” and they said they do not have one and it’s down to the local council. I find that response astounding and there does not appear to be a plan in place from the council either. I asked what would happen if one of their HGVs/tankers was to have an accident in Canvey, and the response was the same – it’s the council’s responsibility. So they are basically passing the buck and anything outside of their fence is not their problem! The site as it is shouldn’t be where it is in such close proximity to residents and to the sea, let alone doubling the size of it! It’s all about money and greed and Canvey is the cheapest option because of the existing facility. Well Canvey residents do not want to be sitting ducks. Would you be comfortable with it on your doorstep? As well as human error and technical error, there is also the threat of terrorism – how would they stop a drone flying over and dropping something – they simply cannot. It’s no good to learn from something after the event of a catastrophe – lives should not be put at risk for the purposes of greed. As well as safety, traffic is another major concern. There are only two roads on/off Canvey to service nearly 40,000 residents and both meet at the same roundabout. Not only will Oikos’ projected extra 480 vehicle movements PER DAY add to our already huge traffic problems, in the event of a major incident, Canvey residents have no chance of getting off the Island quickly when we all have to meet at that one roundabout. Oikos’ response was that they do not envisage causing further traffic issues – they really do not care. They said that HGV timings will be timetabled or words to that effect – they clearly have never been on Canvey when there has been an accident on Somnes Avenue – the whole island comes to a standstill – their HGVs will be backed up with tonnes of hazardous materials on board. Many Canvey residents turned out yesterday for a protest against the expansion – that was just the start, we are going to fight this all the way to protect where we live for us and for future generations. I hope you will take a very close look at this and reach the conclusion that this is a ludicrous and more importantly, deadly proposal that should not be passed. Surely it also goes against the government’s green policy to reduce the use of fossil fuels? I look forward to your response.

Advice given

Thank you for your recent e-mail in relation to the proposed Oikos Marine and South Side Development project, which is currently in the Pre-Application stage and for which an application for development consent has not yet been submitted. An application is expected to be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate in Quarter 3, 2021. As you are aware, the developer has recently carried out its statutory consultation period. It is understood, from the developer’s website, that the deadline for consultation responses was 18 May 2021. However you can make general enquiries about this project with the developer or register for their project updates via the following contact details: • Email: [email protected] • Phone: 0800 206 2583 • Post: OIKOS FREEPOST Further information on the project, including their consultation activities and documents are still available on the OMSSD website at Please note that the Pre-Application consultation process is entirely led by the Applicant, who are responsible for ensuring that they comply with the legislative requirements surrounding consultation, which are set out in the Planning Act 2008. This includes a legal requirement for the Applicant to consult with Statutory Bodies such as the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Your e-mail provides your comments on the merits of the Proposed Development, which the Applicant sought during its consultation. Your email indicates you have already made these comments directly to the Applicant during the consultation, as the Planning Inspectorate would advise you to do. If you are not satisfied that the Applicant is taking them into account you should raise this with the Local Authority also. Information about the Planning Inspectorate’s remit once the Application is submitted When an application is formally submitted to the Planning Inspectorate for Examination, an assessment is made on whether it is of a satisfactory standard to proceed to an Examination. One key element of this assessment is to check whether the Applicant has fulfilled its statutory consultation duties. In order to help make an informed decision on this matter the Planning Inspectorate writes to all host and neighbouring Local Authorities for their views on the adequacy of the consultation. The Applicant is also statutorily required to demonstrate in its submitted application where they have shown regard to responses received during their period of statutory consultation. If the Application has been accepted for Examination, you will be able to register as an Interested Party and make Relevant Representations for the Examining Authority to consider. Please read the Planning Inspectorate’s advice note on How to Register to participate in an Examination for further information. The Examining Authority will make an initial assessment of the issues arising from the submitted application as well as from the Relevant Representations, which will inform their Examination of the proposed development. In order to assist parties in understanding the Planning Act 2008 process, the Planning Inspectorate has prepared a suite of Advice Notes, which are available on our website. The Advice Note 8 series provide an overview of the examination of Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects for members of the public. Hopefully you will find these of assistance. You may wish to note that the Planning Inspectorate has set up a project page for the Oikos scheme. All documents received and issued during the course of the Examination will be published to this page. I hope this e-mail is of assistance. Kind regards