September 2017: We are
quietly progressing with our preparations. Please join
us if you want to assist.
This month there are public consultations for the M54
northern link which may affect some readers.
August 2017: The proposers public consultation responses
have been sent to them. In the next few weeks they have
to consider those responses !?! make any changes and
either walk away or prepare their application to submit
to the Planning Inspectorate. We expect that around
August 2017: There are a range of help &
advice days planned by Parish Councils and ourselves.
Response forms were available at the exhibitions, the
planned advice days, on the proposers website, or from
us. Advice notes have also been prepared. Respond to the
proposer using this advice and hopefully indicate your
opposition - by 30th August. This stage is to tell the
proposer what you think of his plans. Don't give away
campaign information or helpful suggestions and keep a
The next and most important
stage is to give your comments to the planning
inspectorate shortly after the official application is
made - possibly around Xmas. Save your main ammunition
July 2017: Public Consultation Exhibitions were held by
the WMI proposer at four venues (Calf Heath Village
Hall, Brewood Jubilee Hall, Haling Dene Centre,
Penkridge) between 11th & 22nd July. All dates were
well attended and opposition was high.
Please refer back to this group after visiting the
exhibitions for discussion.
July 2017: On the 4th, the proposers made a presentation
to South Staffs District Council in preparation for the
public exhibitions listed below. The latest plans and
documents are now available on the WMI website or at
Penkridge Library, Brewood Library and the District
Council Offices at Codsall.
The published layout is virtually unchanged from the March
revision (shown on this website as "The Proposal" ) but
with much more detail.
Their latest information suggests 10 freight trains per
day generating 6300 HGVs and 12300 additional cars and
vans per day .... but still manages to claim that journey
time will reduce (despite 3 additional traffic islands and
all those extra vehicles)!!! Visit the exhibitions,
absorb the information, question the culprits and get in
June 2017: The General Election is over bar the shouting.
Our Local MPs remain the same: Gavin Williamson and Jeremy
LeFroy (and Amanda Milling at Cannock) so there is
continuity for the work so far.
WMI's mapping consultants Terraquest were skulking around
Gailey on election day and several times since. Signs
asking for information on certain land areas have been
placed in various spots. The proposer has now been asked
to publish the information in the proper manner. Anyone
who sees any signs or unidentified personnel please take a
photo and report back.
There have been some ground radar people working in the
fields trying to detect gold or water pipes. If you see
any such works, take a photo and report back.
Road disruption continues on the A5 & A449 due to Four
Ashes work and M6 events.
May 2017: The WMI proposers are arranging their
Statutory Public Consulations in July at Calf Heath
Community Centre, Penkridge Haling Dene Centre, Brewood
Jubilee Hall, and Coven Community Centres. More details
They are required by law to do this before making an
Considerable road disruption on the A5 & A449
particularly during the night due to Four Ashes work and
May 2017: An excellent Variety Fundraising Night was held
at Calf Heath Village Hall on 11th May. Enjoyed by all
those that attended and a big thanks to those who
performed at the event and those that organised and
staffed the event.
April 2017: Our two MPs, Gavin Williamson and Jeremy
LeFroy MP, held meetings in their respective communities
to launch their campaign against the WMI Rail Freight Hub.
An excellent and lively turnout at each venue.
April 2017: In addition to ongoing serious delays caused
by Bericote Four Ashes factory access on the A449 we
experienced more delays on the A5 the week prior to Easter
due to utilities work and cable damage forcing temporary
traffic lights, level with the Monckton quarry access
road. Imagine what it would be like if WMI was approved
and generated hundreds of extra vehicle movements per
March 2017: The developers timescale has slipped again. No
statutory exhibition until the middle of the year
(June/July?) and the planning application itself won't be
made until the end of the year (November?). They have
cited traffic and highways research problems. Remember
that everything so far has been made to appear formal and
inevitable - it isn't.
March 2017: The new factory on the Bericote site on the
edge of the Four Ashes industrial park, is being built
with unusual haste - almost before anyone can ask why
strategic minerals were not extracted from the land before
it was built over. Serious traffic delays are currently
being experienced due to road works to improve the A449
access to Bericote and footpath improvements. Spanish
automotive components company Gestamp have taken over the
largest building - moving from Cannock with 800 workers.
It can be assumed that there will be an additional 500 car
trips each shift change plus at least 200 HGV trips per 24
hr. operation discharging on to the A449. The massive
factory unit is small compared to the 14 larger and higher
units proposed for West Midlands Interchange.
February 2017. Some people around the perimeter of the
proposal site have had quite intrusive letters including a
large questionaire asking detailed information about
themselves and their property. Not only is this intrusive it
is particularly intimidating for elderly or vulnerable
residents. The details and addresses used have been obtained
from the Land Registry (available at £2 each). Even though
the letters seem very official and mention The Secretary of
State - this is just a ruse to get private information from
The proposers are just private companies trying to line
their own pockets by burying the community and countryside
under a carbuncle.
They have not yet submitted a planning application, have not
paid anything to the Planning Inspectorate and are weighing
up the economics of the venture.
The letters were sent out by Mears Group subsidiary
TerraQuest, a Birmingham based company that has just been
involved in a London exhibition & forum on how to get
Nationally Significant Projects through the planning
system.They appear to have overstepped the mark with the
legality of their letters as they should have agreed a
Communication protocol with the Planning Inspectorate and
the Local Authority before sending your letters out.
The considered opinion is to file or bin the questionaires
and not assist with their personal information gathering -
regardless how many reminders they send.
There has been a burglary in Gailey, a computer with
personal information on it was stolen during the
night. Everyone should be vigilant.