Oxfordshire incinerator build 'to start in April 2011'

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Artist image of Ardley facility
Image caption,
A computer-generated image of how the Ardley incinerator could look

Construction of a waste-burning incinerator which won approval despite protests could start in April 2011.

Councillors backed the plans for the site near the M40 at Ardley in Oxfordshire on Monday despite the first bid being rejected last year.

Members gave permission for the plant to be at the site for 35 years with the countryside restored after that period.

Waste firm Viridor said work could start as early as next April with the first waste being burnt in 2014.

The company believes it can turn 300,000 tonnes of waste into electricity every year.

Viridor challenged the refusal last year and a public inquiry was held with the planning inspector due to make a decision in January next year.

'Sympathetically landscaped'

In the meantime the second application was submitted which has now won approval.

But campaigners said the fight was far from over with protesters looking into legal challenges while the planning inspector could also look into the decision.

Opponents said the plant would have a detrimental effect on the countryside, increase traffic and they believed there was not a need for such a large plant.

But Robert Ryan, project manager for Viridor, said: "The site has been sympathetically landscaped and is quite some way away from Ardley village.

"We will continue to explain further what we are doing, why we are doing it and engaging with people during construction and the life of the site."

The county council said an incinerator represented the best deal to get rid of the county's non-recyclable waste.

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