A DAVYHULME councillor has brought Urmston traders together to oppose the planned Barton Renewable Energy Plant (BREP) ahead of a public inquiry next month.
BREP was unanimously rejected by Trafford councillors last year after a high profile campaign by the Breathe Clean Air Group (BCAG), however, Peel Energy is appealing the council’s decision and both sides with argue their case at the inquiry on November 13.
Cllr Lisa Cooke, of Davyhulme East ward, said: “I think my job as local councillor is to round up the community and to bring as many small businesses to the inquiry as possible.”
She and the six traders who were present at the meeting at Lily’s Cafe, Urmston, expressed concern that the plant will lead to the degeneration of the area and spoil its attractiveness, as well as cause health problems to residents.
Stephen Groves, Director of Trading Places, said: “It’s not just ourselves we have to think about, it’s the people we employ and their future safety.
Mr Groves also asserted that he will finance free shuttle busses from Urmston town centre on the day of the inquiry so that people who do not have their own transport will be able to attend and BCAG supporters can make their presence felt.
Cllr Cooke said: “We want to keep attracting new people because that’s what makes Urmston great, we want people spending money in our cafes, shops and opticians.”
She added: “I can’t believe the fantastic support I’ve had from these businesses, I feel really proud to represent them.”
A spokesman for Peel said BREP will inject £70m into the local economy, provide over 100 construction jobs at peak, as well 15 jobs if construction goes ahead.
Jon England, from Peel Energy, said: "The plant will sustain a good deal of local economic activity but we expect the public inquiry will consider socioeconomic issues objectively as part of its wider remit."