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'Unfathomable' - 60 horseback protestors join campaign against beauty spot quarry plans

PUBLISHED: 12:36 28 October 2019 | UPDATED: 12:40 28 October 2019

Protestors and their horses gathered in Shouldham Warren on Saturday, October 26 to protest the proposed plans to use the site for sand quarrying. Picture: Rachel Hurcomb.

Protestors and their horses gathered in Shouldham Warren on Saturday, October 26 to protest the proposed plans to use the site for sand quarrying. Picture: Rachel Hurcomb.

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Horse riders and residents took to Shouldham Warren to protest the proposed plans to use the site for quarrying.

More than 60 people took part in the horse riders protest at Shouldham Warren. Picture: Rachel Hurcomb.More than 60 people took part in the horse riders protest at Shouldham Warren. Picture: Rachel Hurcomb.

Around 60 riders both mounted and on foot gathered on Saturday, October 26, to add their voices to the ongoing campaign to save part of the warren from being turned into a quarry.

It was Campaigners Against Two Silica Sites (CATSS) latest objections to the proposed silica sand extraction quarry to be built between Shouldham and Marham.

Sally McCall, horse owner, said: "I came because the Warren is an amazing place of natural beauty where I feel safe to ride my young horse without the danger of riding on the roads with fast traffic and lorries."

The proposals are in response to Norfolk County Council's (NCC) Minerals plan review.

Members of Campaigners Against Two Silica Sites and residents took to horseback to object to the proposal to use the woodlands for quarrying. Picture: Rachel Hurcomb.Members of Campaigners Against Two Silica Sites and residents took to horseback to object to the proposal to use the woodlands for quarrying. Picture: Rachel Hurcomb.

MORE: South West Norfolk MP Liz Truss joined more than 50 people at a peaceful gathering earlier this month to add her objections to the proposed plans.

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Jenny Simpson from Brook Farm Liveries, who organised the event, said: "This is a beautiful place, full of wildlife and popular with riders, walkers, cyclists and families.

"It provides safe off-road riding for so many and it is unfathomable that this ancient woodland environment is under threat from the Norfolk County Council mineral and waste plan, particularly given the climate crisis we now face.

"We wanted to do something to add our voices to the campaign run by CATSS and so we are standing together with fellow riders to say 'sorry no quarry'.

"At a time where road accidents involving horses and riders are on the rise, protecting safe off-road public access spaces such as the warren is so important."

The proposals are in the second round of consultation, following on from the feedback received to the Initial Consultation last summer.

Andy Grant, Norfolk County Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Waste, said: "I encourage anyone who is interested to carefully read the consultation documents, and make their comments known.

"Following feedback we received in the first round of consultation a number of changes to the draft Minerals and Waste Local Plan document were made, including the removal of sites in the parishes of Holt, Feltwell, Quidenham, Shouldham and Marham and reducing the size of the proposed area of search at Shouldham and Marham."

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