Proposals to concentrate the county’s mineral production in our district could be on the rocks after an independent inspector refused to approve the plan.

Essex County Council (ECC) presented its replacement local minerals plan, which lists quarry sites up to 2029, at a public examination in November.

The draft plan will see 60 per cent of the county’s gravel extraction take place in and around Braintree and Witham.

But independent inspector Brian Sims, who oversaw the public meetings, has informed ECC that changes must be made to the plan.

Braintree and Witham Times: Braintree district: Quarry plan to be publicly examined this week

James Abbott, district councillor for Rivenhall and county councillor for Witham North, has been a vocal opponent of the plan.

He said: “We must wait to see what the problems are, but if it is something the local community said to the county council at an early stage, then serious questions will have to be asked.”