August 30, 2022 4.34 pm This story is over 15 months old

Lincolnshire intensive chicken farm with 330k birds set to be approved

Councillors want to stop any potential noise or smell

A chicken farm which could house 330,000 birds is set to be given permission in South Lincolnshire.

Six large sheds would be built by an established farm near Donington, which is looking to diversify its business.

Councillors said that the welfare of the chickens must be protected, and any smell or noise should be kept to a minimum.

The sheds would each house 55,000 birds from day-old chicks until they are ready to be taken to the table.

The site off the A52 Fen Road would be upgraded to deal with traffic if the plans are approved. It would be widened for 20 metres either side of the entrance to allow HGVs to pass.

Ward Councillor Simon Walsh said: “Whilst investment in local business and jobs are to be encouraged, we need to be mindful of animal welfare and noise/air/environmental pollution.

“Should planning be agreed, then it must be with conditions that have animal welfare at their centre, regular inspections and with power to act if they fall short at any time.”

He added that residents need assurances that there will be “little impact on environment and any smell or noise which will affect the quality of local life.”

Councillor Jane King said: “I understand the need for farmers to diversify now, but I do have concerns regarding the welfare of this many birds, and would want assurances that this will be monitored thoroughly and action taken immediately should issues occur.

“There are some concerns over the smell from these sheds, also the extra traffic coming onto the main road.”

Birds would be delivered at one-day old | Photo: Adobe Stock

11 objections had also been received from members of the public, which raised potential issues such as odours, traffic problem on the A52, and flies.

One comment said that an open air chicken farm would be more humane and preferable.

Donington Parish Council also raised animal welfare concerns, saying they doubted that the council would monitor and enforce rules.

Despite this, South Holland District Council officers say they don’t see a strong reason to refuse permission.

The application has been submitted by Wray Trading Ltd of Northrope Farm, which is looking to diversity its business beyond crops.

There are no immediate neighbours to the site at Gibbet Fen, with a railway running alongside.

Only three days in each flock cycle which will require 24 hour lighting, according to the application.

Previous requests to build farm houses were removed from the application, but could be submitted separately in the future.

The plans will go before the council’s Planning Committee on Wednesday, September 7 for a final decision.