VHE Appearance on the BBC
23 April 2015
The requirement to remediate gardens at a residential site in Wales has been creating quite a storm in the media and was recently featured on the BBC One Show.
Campaigners in Coedpoeth eventually won their battle with Wrexham Council to avoid footing the bill for the contamination works in their gardens. In total 11 properties are undergoing remediation work by VHE on what is a former lead smelting works site. The works were awarded as part of a Wrexham Council Framework, determined under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
The homeowners had originally faced having to part fund the works to remove the soil which was contaminated by lead smelters more than 200 years ago. However, the Welsh Government Minister for Natural Resources, Carl Sargeant, assured the residents that “under no circumstances” would the cost of remediation fall to them.
The Minister said: “These costs would ordinarily fall at the door of the polluter or, failing that, the current land owner but given the circumstances we are keen for this to be resolved for the good of all parties concerned and have approached Wrexham County Borough Council offering to contribute to the costs in the interests of the residents.’’
The Welsh Government had explored whether this case was comparable to Blanefield in Scotland, where the UK Government made a contribution to the remediation costs. They agreed that this case was sufficiently different to Blanefield but, in this instance, took the exceptional decision to contribute to the costs of remediation.
VHE has developed considerable experience in working with existing householders in carrying out work under Part 2A of the Environmental Act and are also a framework contractor on the Environment Agency National Remediation Contractor Framework. Feel free to contact us on 01226 320150 to discuss your requirements or alternatively use our quick enquiry form.