Landfill protestors hand over 5,000-strong petition

A petition signed by 5,000 people objecting to plans to open a new landfill site at Thakeham has been delivered by West Sussex MPs Nick Herbert (Arundel & South Downs) and Francis Maude (Horsham).

The petition was presented to Councillor Frank Wilkinson at County Hall in Chichester on Friday (29 January).

The signatures were collected by campaigners from Thakeham Village Action after Cory Environmental submitted an application to dump 4.1 million tonnes of rubbish at Laybrook Brickworks over the next 21 years.

Nick Herbert commented: "While other countries go green Britain is still relying on landfill which is the most environmentally damaging way to dispose of waste.  As the residents of Small Dole know only too well, the noise, smell, flies and litter from a landfill site can be dreadful.  We should be increasing recycling and using waste for energy and materials, not burying the problem in the ground.

"My constituents in Thakeham and Ashington would also have to put up with 200 lorry movements a day - one every three minutes - for the next 21 years.  I strongly support the local community in their opposition to this dreadful landfill application and I hope that the County Council will reject it."

Francis Maude commented: "This has been an epic campaign fuelled by deep passions and great organisation.  The whole community has got behind Jean and her formidable team.  We've fought tooth and nail against this proposal and we'll just have to wait and see if common sense prevails and it's thrown out once and for all."

Jean Locker of Thakeham Village Action commented: "Our petition, with well over 5,100 people signing it, clearly demonstrates the strength of opposition to a rotting rubbish landfill at Laybrook.  The people who signed it came from both the local community and wider afield throughout West Sussex and beyond.  People have declared that they do not want a landfill at Laybrook.  The two local MPs, Nick Herbert and Francis Maude support us.  The County Council must listen and refuse permission for a landfill which would damage the heart of rural West Sussex for ever."

The planning application submitted by Cory will be considered by the County's Planning Committee in the next few months.



Notes for Editors

1. For the website of Thakeham Village Action (TVA), who are campaigning against the proposed landfill site at Laybrook Brickworks, visit

2. For details of TVA's campaign, visit

3. For a copy of Nick Herbert's formal submission to West Sussex County Council, visit [link to follow]

4. In the photograph, the petition handover is shown, with (left to right): Anne Fearnley of Thakeham Village Action; Francis Maude MP; Nick Herbert MP; Jean Locker of Thakeham Village Action; Cllr Frank Wilkinson of West Sussex County Council.

Christopher N Howarth