Planning application after planning application for extraction of minerals from old quarries and slate tips, bio-diversity concerns and requirements for EIA (Environmental Impact Assessments) overuled or side-lined, GDPOs (General Permitted Development Orders) used extensively to avoid public consultations, Local Planning Authorities and Mineral Planning Authorities completely ignoring complaints and enquiries (including those of elected public representatives), Natural Resources Wales incidents ignored, Health & Safety Executive incidents ignored ...what is going on? Is this in Brazil, possibly, and not Cymru?
No, this is what happens when Gwynedd's planning framework and policies committees quietly come to an arrangement on meeting mineral quotas in North Wales, when it is quietly decided that Gwynedd and Conwy should take the brunt of meeting those quotas because certain minerals (
: slate) are not present on Yns Môn (Anglesey), and when (in conjunction with certain self-interested parties in North Wales, especially within Gwynedd) it is decided to derail the World Heritage Site (WHS) process in areas they are wanting to work which, in this case, is primarily lower
(Snowdonia National Park) and, thus, has extensive protections against extractive industries; unfortunately this is not the case for the lower valley area (including Bro Silyn and Talysarn), so whilst the proposed (and now submitted) World Heritage Site application covers much of the area around Nantlle, also Dorothea Quarries, the ridge line that extends out from there towards Llanllyfni (and which originally constituted part of Dorothea Quarries before being sliced in two by the B4418) is completely excluded despite the presence of public rights of way, beautiful scenery, numerous bio-diversity sites, and a not inconsiderable amount of quarrying heritage.
Outside of Gwynedd County Council there are currently four main sites either being worked or used as transit or deposit sites slong the Dorothea Quarry to Llanllyfni ridgeline (as detailed below) ...so there is probably no question over where the pressure to exclude the ridgeline from the WHS application is coming from, even outside of the council's own self-interest in abusing democratic process by using Gwynedd and Conwy to make-up mineral quotas for other areas and to provide for needless vanity projects that could have been avoided simply through the removal of a couple of roundabouts along the route of the A487.
* contains a biodiversity report on a similar site in Llanllyfni (maybe a mile distant from the development site), highlighting inconsistencies in the planning procedures in which the advice of the council's Biodiversity Department was accorded some weight and acted upon in the case of the Llanllyfni site, but as good as disregarded in the case of the slate tip removal beyond recommendations that the applicant have various surveys carried-out and take preventative measures to avoid harming any protected wildlife, in the sure knowledge that neither are ever likely to happen after Gwynedd's Local Planning Authority made clear their total disregard of the bio-diversity status of the site during the planning approval process.
** this is an earlier application on the same site (one that was denied following public consultation), but the documentation includes some interesting submissions, including a comprehensive Archæology report covering the tip removal site.
D & E Jones (D & E simply being a reference to Dafydd & Ellis) of Glaslyn, Tai Nantlle is the operator of all the sites, excepting only that of Tyn y Weirglodd Quarry (which is operated by Welsh Slate Limited), and is also, in turn, not only director of Ty Mawr West Limited
but also Ty Mawr West Recycling Limited
. In short, they are the primary controlling party behind every one but one of the sites along the Dorothea Quarry - Llanllyfni ridgeline.
Some allowance also needs to be accorded to Natural Resources Wales (NRW) and Health & Safety Executive (HSE) recommendations, but nothing on a level that would match the scale of damage or destruction present in some areas of the site (specifically, south of the main development area and north of the haul track before reaching the main site) or which would involve or necessitate the deliberate dumping of stone, mineral waste, and soil on watershed wetland area or crushed rock onto the main development site to overspread that into additional wetland area, in both cases contrary to DoWCoP or CL:AIRE MMP and to provide staging areas for activities that are neither permitted by site CEMP or at all necessary beyond illegally using the site as a staging area for other activities.
Just to really add insult to corruption and collusion, the latest round of allowed applications (Penygroes Quarry, Tomen Lechi Taldrwst, Tŷ Mawr East, &c.) not only abuse the use of fast-track GDPO, but also blatantly misuse the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015
and, along with many previous applications, completely disregard the council's obligations under the Environment Act (Wales) 2016
. As for the declared "Climate Emergency", that does not even get a mention. Understandable, I guess, when it would be more accurate to say "Greed, Apathy, Ignorance, and Amorality" (of which there is evidently no shortage of in this part of Gwynedd and as ironical as the abbreviation may be).
this site is undergoing ongoing changes and amendments as further details and evidence is gathered and added to the site, so please feel free to use the contact details given at the foot of this page should you have any questions or should you wish to submit further details or evidence of your own; but please do not send attachments without first contacting me, as the attachments will simply be deleted by the mail server otherwise.
All the media material on this site is available by request, including copies of the original .jpg
files and additional material that is not currently part of the online article; likewise all letters and emails where referenced by this article.
For anyone wanting to make their own reports of similar activities in their area, please contact me via my secure email address, and via a Protonmail account (free accounts available), if possible. Field numbers and postcodes can be determined via MAGIC [
Interactive Map >
Where Am I? top menu-bar button) >
click on relevant area on the main map for the field number after zooming-in on, or searching for, that area) ]
If you are a fellow tree-hugger, one of those "old crusties", local twitcher, or just someone wanting to know what is so special about these quarry workings and the Dorothea Quarry-Llanllyfni ridgeline, I am happy to show you in person and free of charge, with no running commentary or any tour-guide nonsense. You will need good (waterproof) footwear, a sense of adventure, and a passion for rough terrain.
Free surveillance from a lay-by opposite the junction of Ffordd Hyfrydle is sometimes provided by people connected to the sites from the cosy safety of a layby off the B4418, along with occasional interesting encounters with some of the locals, on anyone passing through the vicinity of the ridgeline quarries (especially those in the vicinity of Tŷ Mawr quarries or the area above the quarries). All walks are along public rights of way wherever possible and should normally not exceed more than a couple of hours. My email address is as shown below.