AN ATTEMPT to reopen a limestone quarry was blocked by councillors over road safety concerns.
Tarmac’s plan to extend the life of the Harrycroft site at South Anston until 2033 was rejected.
Members of Rotherham Borough Council’s planning board voted eight to four against the idea, citing concerns over the A57 access.
Board member Cllr Bob Taylor said: “My main concern is that fully-laden vehicles leaving this site slowly, entering into fast-flowing traffic, is a major problem.
“I’m not quite sure that the proposals to improve the signage and cut back vegetation to improve views is the answer.”
And Cllr Jenny Whysall added: “The traffic is horrendous on there.
“It’s non-stop and these lorries in and out are a terrible hazard.
“I don’t see anything apart from a major road-widening scheme being able to solve the problem.”
Mineral extraction has taken place at the site since permission was originally granted in 1960.
An application to extend the quarry’s life to 2016 was passed on appeal eight years ago but work ceased more than 12 months ago.
There are about 2.5 million tonnes of mineral left at the site, which Tarmac said would take 15 years to recover.
The plan would have resulted in up to 13 vehicle movements per hour.
A petition against reopening the quarry was signed by 120 people. Objections included the additional traffic and potential damage to properties from blasting.
Cllr Stuart Thornton, representing Anston Parish Council, told last Thursday’s meeting: “Wagons turning right to Worksop have to cross the busy traffic flow. This manoeuvre is dangerous and will more than likely cause a fatality at some point in the future.
“The council’s own planning department have acknowledged that the crossroads at South Anston requires improvement. That busy junction would have to contend with extra traffic flow from the quarry.
“Re-opening would have a detrimental effect on the community after years and years of suffering blasting, noise, shaking housing and excessive vehicle transport though the village of South Anston.”
One 70-year-old South Anston resident said: “On the housing estate to the west of the quarry, the houses shake. There’s all sorts of stories of cracked windows, pictures falling off walls.
“The roof trusses in my bungalow shake then they do the blasting.”
Council officers had recommended the scheme for approval. Senior highways officer Ian Ferguson said surveys in 2008 and 2015 had shown a reduction in HGVs, plus the speed limit had been lowered and the road resurfaced.
Application agent David Walker, representing Tarmac, said the firm felt there would be extensive controls imposed and a new restoration scheme would have delivered further ecological enhancements.