Dealing with threat cases to ancient woodland every day, I often get asked the question how do you not find it so depressing, with so many people wanting to destroy our natural environment?
The answer today would be 'Cwm Nant Lleici quarry'.
As supporters with owl-like memories in Wales may recall, this is the application we learned about last summer involving a new quarry road. The road’s creation involves cutting through both an ancient wood and a SSSI.
Alongside hundreds of supporters, members of the public and the local AM and MP, we objected to the planning application, not least because a perfectly functioning road to the quarry already exists!
We received the good news today that the applicant has asked for their proposal to be put on hold until the end of August. This is so they can explore other options.
This is very good news for both the ancient woodland and the local people in Pontardawe that argued so strongly for it to be preserved. This does not mean that the threat has been lifted, far from it, but it does show the message is getting through.
Aggregate Industries Ltd deserves credit for listening to local opinion and looking for another solution. Indeed, our hope is that sense and reason prevails, with all sides agreeing to a continued use of the existing route.
Time will tell, but for now we celebrate this very positive news!