A CONTROVERSIAL plan to extract 4,000 tonnes of sandstone over a five-year period within the former Prudham Quarry, near Fourstones, have been rejected by councillors.

Haltwhistle-based Border Stone Quarries submitted an application more than three years ago to quarry sandstone from Prudham Quarry, which is home to a body of water known as “The Blue Lagoon” by Tynedale residents.

The application site covers an area of 1 hectare and includes access tracks, quarry compound, stone storage and extraction area. The Prudham Quarry site, which has not been worked on since the 1970s, maintains features of previous mineral exploitation including waste dumps of various sizes.

The application was finally debated by Northumberland County Council at the strategic planning meeting at County Hall, Morpeth, on Tuesday.

However, Councillors unanimously rejected it after the Environment Agency said the proposal provides inadequate information on the risks concerning groundwater.

The application has been met with staunch opposition from residents, with more than 170 objections submitted to the authority.

Local resident David Curry and Vice Chair of Warden Parish Council, Coun. Rob Tindall spoke at the meeting objecting to the proposal.

David said: “After a large quantity of stone was extracted in 2013, large quantities of water repeatedly flooded our garage and workshop after the nearby spring came to life.”

Complaints about the applications have centred around an increase in noise caused by quarry work, and concerns about large trucks using the area’s roads. However, in its planning statement, Border Stone Quarries said no more than six wagons would visit and depart the site each day to export sandstone, resulting in a total of six journeys.

Agent Katie Wood representing Border Stone Quarries, said: “We accept the refusal at this time and don’t feel the need to appeal the decision. We are confident we have undertaken additional work and will submit that in the due course.”