Rail Central (Strategic Rail Freight Interchange)

The views expressed in this page do not represent those of the Planning Inspectorate. This page consists of content submitted to the Planning Inspectorate by the public and other interested parties, giving their views of this proposal.

Rail Central (Strategic Rail Freight Interchange)

Received 13 December 2018
From Chris Dancer


My family and myself are totally opposed to this proposal from both a strategic and a local perspective.

There are a significant number of technical planning reasons why the proposal is unacceptable, primarily in that it is completely in conflict, and totally contrary, to the commercial, transport, employment and housing objectives of the whole region. More development of this type and scale will result in a complete imbalance of the adopted core planning strategy. Furthermore, with DIRFT in the very near vicinity and with significant future capacity and a number of other intermodal hubs located in the wider East Midlands region, the proposals do not exhibit any form of ‘national strategy’ and, given the relatively short distances involved, the suggested benefits of a transportation modal shift will not occur.

From a local perspective, my family have lived in this area of Northamptonshire for over 25 years and the proposal will have a devasting impact on the quality of life in both our community, and a large number of the surrounding communities. In what is currently rural, open countryside, the direct and immediate effect on all local villages will be both huge and permanent with the massive scale and nature of the proposals, coupled with the area topography, creating a significant visual impact over a large swathe of South Northamptonshire. The site required will irrecoverably destroy a vast area of prime agricultural land, along with a number of rare habitats, and the site operational activities with associated increased HGV and worker traffic will generate very significant increases in air, light and noise pollution. Also, from the traffic predictions submitted within the application, it is very clear that the trunk road network cannot accommodate the increased vehicle movements, which in turn will put an untenable strain on all the surrounding village access roads. No amount of suggested ‘mitigation’ will be able to rectify any of these impacts.

In summary, the proposal is simply a speculative, road-based, ‘big shed’ scheme driven by online retailing storage requirements that delivers no local or national benefits whilst destroying our local communities and I urge the Inspectorate to refuse the application.