A PETITION has been launched against plans for a quarry which residents say would ‘destroy beautiful countryside'.

An application has been submitted to Lancashire County Council for a sand and mineral extraction quarry, to make concreting aggregate, on a greenfield site off the horseshoe bend on the River Ribble at Lower Hall Farm on Potters Lane in Samlesbury.

Stephanie Tufft, who lives on the lane, has created the petition to try to block the plan from Harleyford Aggregates Ltd, which has a mineral lease from the owners, the Booth Charities.

The petition said: “The area is rural with a small number of residential properties.

“The wildlife in the area is very special, with lovely views over the river and walks through woodland and across fields, popular with walkers, runners, cyclists, horse riders, providing fresh air and exercise for many during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The plans adjoin a public footpath, bridle path and cycle way which is used by many.”

Speaking to the Lancashire Telegraph she added: “It is going to be a 20-year project and the lane is going to be ruined for everyone.

“The planning application suggests there will be no impact on residents but I live 275 metres away. There are going to be problems with noise, traffic and a visual impact and I know on the lane there will be an 8m high bund which will block the lovely views on the lane and for people who walk in the area.

“Local people and visitors are objecting to these plans on the basis of the damage to the environment, a diverse wildlife, the visual impact for those who live there and visit, noise, pollution and the worry of adding to the already heavy traffic on the A59. We believe existing sites can be better utilised before this site is considered.”

Objector John Greave said: “It would be a travesty if this development goes ahead.

“There are people who believe that the Romans used to come up the river and walk to Ribchester so this area could have historical significance.

"Also there are ancient woodlands which will be affected.

“Also there are ruins of the original Samlesbury Hall there which date back to the 17th century.

“There will be lot of lorries coming up the A59. In the planning documents it says that there will 30 lorries a day going on the road and they are going to cause mayhem.

“It is on greenbelt land and it is not the right place to do it.”

Nigel Evans, Ribble Valley MP, said: “I’m totally opposed to any quarrying in the area. The vehicular movements alone would be hugely disruptive.

“I’m backing local residents 100 per cent and it would have an impact on people living there.”

The planning application said: “The application provides for the extraction of a net saleable reserve of 3million tonnes of sand and gravel.

“The provision of concreting aggregate is essential for the continued economic, environmental and social wellbeing and security of Lancashire.

“It will assist in enabling the development objectives of the Preston City Deal and the Central Lancashire Core Strategy. The minerals will also assist the wider objectives of Government as set out in the National Infrastructure Strategy to ‘level-up’ society, to create the Northern Powerhouse, and in the provision of essential infrastructure and materials to assist the economy to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.”

It added that there was 'a demonstrable urgent and very significant need to release new reserves of sand and gravel in Lancashire to comply with the supply and landbank obligations’.

“A quarry may not be visually attractive during its operational phase, but minerals can only be extracted where they are found.

“The impacts are temporary, and in this case contained in discrete phases which will be restored as operations proceed.

“Restoration will provide a different but more attractive landscape and significantly increase the extent of desired habitats and provide other environmental assets for the community. Restoration will therefore not just retain but will enhance openness.

“In operation and when restored as wetland and woodland the mineral extraction operations will prevent urban sprawl and maintain openness.

"The extraction operations therefore may be regarded in Green Belt policy terms as equally effective in preventing urban sprawl as the current use as agricultural land.”

If you want to sign the petition then visit the change.org and type in ‘Stop the quarry at Samlesbury’.