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The Stop Dolbebin community group was originally set up to fight Planning Application C13/1052/22/MW within the county of Gwynedd, North Wales. This application was refused at committee in January 2014, however, the applicant has resubmitted the plans to the council under new application C14/0645/22/MW.

In essence the resubmitted plans contain very little difference to the original plans, a large proportion of the reasons for refusal have not been mitigated at all.

We fully expect this issue to go before the planning committee in the near future, regardless of the legalities of the application and the fact that numerous reasons for refusal last time remain unchanged, we need to fight this application more strongly than ever.

Once this application goes to committee we are in the hands of locally elected politicians. We need to ensure that we send the strongest message possible to our elected members that this development is wrong and we do not want this development to go ahead.

This is not a case of nimbyism, there are very strong material reasons why this development was refused before and should be refused again.

If we sit back and do nothing, rely on the fact it was refused before so there is nothing to worry about, there is a strong possibility that it may be pushed through the planning committee.

If you are a resident of Bro Silyn, Tanrallt, Talysarn or the wider community you must use your voice and send in an objection to Gwynedd Council.

The impacts of this application were summarised in the January committee meeting by the Planning officer as follows (Quoted unchanged from the minutes of the committee meeting):

The Senior Planning Service Manager responded to the observations as follows:

 Four reasons for refusing the application had been noted in the report and the main reason was the impact the proposed scheme would have on the amenities of nearby residents within the buffer zone,

 If it were possible to approve with conditions, the Environmental Health Section would have suggested conditions to alleviate the noise impact,

 The information submitted to the Environmental Health Section by the applicant related to noise impact being 20 decibels higher than the background noise level without the processing work, and was therefore higher than the permitted maximum, and would cause statutory nuisance.

 That the Biodiversity Unit objected to the application due to the lack of information, and therefore it had not been possible to assess the impact on biodiversity.

The impacts of this development remain unchanged in this new application and the reasons detailed above remain unchanged.

Please, please, please, ensure you write a letter of objection, if you require assistance please get in touch with Stop Dolbebin either through this website or Facebook.

To assist in writing your objection detailed below are the reasons for refusal in January:


1. In terms of the local and regional need for the mineral, it is considered that there are sufficient reserves of slate in Gwynedd and there is no requirement on the authority in terms of regional apportionment to provide further reserves or allocations of slate waste. The development therefore does not comply with National and Regional Planning Policy and Guidance or with the requirements of Policy C9, C10 and C15 of the Unitary Development Plan. To minimise the visual and environmental impact of mineral development on the Nantlle Valley, the authority would first need to consider extensions to existing sites.

2. In the absence of a scheme of restoration, aftercare and afteruse, it is considered that the proposal will have a detrimental impact on the visual amenities of the area both during the operational phase and upon the cessation of operations. As such the development does not comply with the requirements of Policy B10, C9, C14 and C15 of the Unitary Development Plan as well as national planning policy guidance (Note from Stop Dolbebin: The applicant has included the bare bones of a restoration plan in this resubmission, we believe that the restoration plan submitted does not meet statutory requirements but suggest until further investigation this issue is used with care in objections)

3. It is considered that the proposal alone, or in combination with other mineral developments in the area is likely to have a detrimental impact on the amenities of the area and is contrary to policy B23 of the UDP (amenities) and policy C12 (buffer zones).

4. It is not considered that sufficient information has been submitted with the application to determine the impact of the proposal on the local water environment and mitigation for the loss of Rhos pasture included in the Section 42 list of Habitats of Principal Importance for the conservation of biological diversity and the proposal is therefore contrary to Policy B17, B33, C9, C14 and C15 of the Unitary Development Plan as well as national planning policy guidance in Technical Advice Note 5: Nature Conservation and Planning.


Below are details surrounding the January application, everything detailed below including the false information of the original application has been duplicated in this resubmission.

The application is for the removal of 150,000 tons of slate from the Bro Silyn Slate tip in the Nantlle Valley. This development is as close as 70m to the nearest residential dwelling with the hamlet of Tanrallt 150m away and the Bro Silyn estate also 150m with the access road passing as close as 30 meters.

If this application goes ahead it will blight our quiet peaceful rural community with noise, dust and lots more lorries on the Talysarn road through Penygroes for at least the next 8 years.

It will also have the impact of ripping apart everything that nature has done to reclaim these tips for the last 50+ years.

It wont create any new jobs, it will only take jobs from other quarries already working in our valley. The present quarries are not working at capacity themselves so there is no new demand for this slate.

A lot of information in the documents supplied by the applicant is just plain wrong, distances to houses quoted as a quarter of a mile (400m) when these houses are 70m away is just one example.

The existing quarries are a lot further away from houses than this new quarry but our lives are still disturbed by them, this one will be so close that for 6 days a week we will get no peace.

Extra lorries past Talysarn and through Penygroes. From Bro Silyn you will be forced to either cross the 50 MPH road to avoid the quarry entrance or cross where the lorries will join the main road.

The access track will pass within meters of the Bro Silyn playing fields, slate dust can make symptoms of asthma worse and bring on attacks etc.

We need your help in stopping the communities of Bro Silyn and Tanrallt being destroyed by this unsympathetic development so close to our homes.

6 Responses to home

  1. Gareth Jones

    With regards to an unrelated planning issue that will affect Talysarn residents, is everyone aware of the current council consultation (joint local development plan) currently underway?

    Included in it is a proposal to designate all of the land around Plas Coed Madog in Talysarn (between church Road, Coed Madog Road and rhiwlas road, as an eligible site for a housing development. The consultation details and comment forms are available on the council website and from their offices until the end of march 2015.

    Anyone wishing to comment or object should do so now.

  2. Alun Pugh

    I’m writing as a former director of a Gwynedd based environmental charity.

    I should add that I live near Llanberis so I am not directly affected by the project in the way that local residents are. But it seems to me that Gwynedd Council’s professional officers have done some decent work on the application and their professional judgement is that it should be refused. I agree.

    We certainly need more jobs here in Gwynedd – but development must be sustainable and take full account of the impact on local residents.

  3. Concerned resident

    Has anyone else looked at the ownership of Gwynedd Slate Ltd which is listed as the employer on the Ap Thomas report prepared for the previous application? (C13/1052/22/MW)

    As it is a limited company all of the information regarding its ownership etc is available to the public and there are numerous sites that show this information for free, for example

    Would anyone consider it reasonable to assume that the applicants would still intend to trade through this company if the new application is approved? If so then it is worth having a look at the details.

    According to the Companies House records, Mr & Mrs Hughes are the company director’s (officers/employees), but they are not shareholders (owners) of the company.

    If this application is a diversification from the family farm in order to secure the future of their children in the area of their birth (as translated from Mr Hughes’ comment in the recent BBC news article), why are they not the shareholders of the company that will be carrying out the extraction should planning be approved?

    There could of course be a perfectly rational and reasonable explanation for the discrepancy, but it is worth asking the question, who is Norman Younger and what is his interest in the extraction of slate form Dolbebin?

  4. Peter French

    In the noise assessment survey undertaken in July 2013 for the previous application (C13/1052/22/MW) which they are again using for the current application (details on Gwynedd Council Planning Portal re: application C14/0645/22/MW), the surveyors refer in the section 6.0.0 ‘Potential Source of Noise’, sub-section 6.0.2 to the “manufacturer’s specification” – (details which have been supplied to the surveyors assumingly by the applicant) of the ‘Powerscreen Metrotrack’ that the applicant would like to have on site to undertake the ‘crushing’.

    Now it gets more interesting, I promise.

    A Powerscreen Metrotrack is a generic brand name for a number of crushing machines which can weigh in at 200,000 lbs and over 72′ in length.

    There are 3 main types – a JAW crusher, a CONE crusher and an IMPACT crusher.

    Within these 3 main types are several model variations – all will have different operating noise and dust impact levels.

    I have informed the planning department of this in my objection letter filed on line – hoping they will undertake further investigations.

    So why have I objected?

    Impact on recovering, previously scarred by industry, countryside and wildlife.

    Impact on noise and air pollution.

    Because I do not want myself, my wife or either of my two young sons, or anyone else for that matter, developing a lung disease attributed to slate dust or diesel fumes. Nor do I want to see a motorist, cyclist or pedestrian splattered as a result of any current or proposed increase in thundering laden or unladen mineral transport wagons racing to meet their quota.

    Nuff said.

  5. John G Williams

    Are you all aware that another application has now been submitted for this development,even though a similar one was refused about 6 months ago by Cyngor Gwynedd. Its about time some national support was given to object this current application from Enviromental groups such as Greenpeace and the Green Party etc.Suggest we all start since our local councillors seem to be very quiet on this matter.Apparently the local elected representative didnt even bother to turn up when the first application was being considered !

  6. Rosalind Cooper

    This is an appalling prospective development for short term financial gain with no regard for the environment. I do so hope you have more success in stopping this than the people opposing the tip at Llwyn Isaf .some Items in the report for that were completely untrue e.g. that it would not be visible from my farm, it certainly is and nobody had been near to be able to make a judgment. They just say what they want and ignore the truth. You have my wholehearted support for your opposition.

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