Residents against plans for a 40,000 pig farm on the outskirts of Limavady have mounted an online campaign against the proposal they say would “destroy our community”.
Over the weekend two local residents - who prefer not to be named - started a Facebook page called ‘Stop the Moys Road, Limavady Pig Farm’, while a petition has also been circulated.
The residents said several local residents had voiced concerns about the plan which prompted them to take to social media.
The man behind the online petition, who prefers not to be named, told the ‘Journal’ if the plans go ahead such an operation would have a “devastating impact” on the local community.
Both residents said among the concerns voiced by residents are fears about smell, traffic and noise as well the price of houses being devalued.
“The impact on our homes, community and environment will be devastating,” he said. “We live in the countryside as a community, and we can all deal with the slurry being spread during the year and the farm traffic, but this plan would make that 100 times worse. This petition is not an overreaction and it’s not an attack on the farmer who submitted the application. This is about the local community coming together to stop something we believe will destroy our community. I have children and they have to walk to get the bus and I would be very concerned about the traffic impact the plant would have.”
The planning application has been made to Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council whose Department determined “the proposed development would likely have significant effects on the environment, therefore an environmental statement was required. This determination was accepted by the applicant and the Environmental Statement was provided to the Council within the specified six months on 29th June 2015. Council is now proceeding to initiate a fresh round of consultations on the basis of the Environmental Statement. No opinion has been formed on the development at this time,” said a Council spokesperson.
The planning application has been submitted by farmer Tommy Simpson who told the ‘Journal’, if approved, it would mean approximately 2,200 sows would be in the units, with around 40,000 pigs going through the farm. He said there would be no more than 20,000 pigs on site at any stage because once they reach the stage where they weigh 30kg they would be moved to one of the other farms involved in the venture.
Mr Simpson said the venture could create up to one dozen jobs. When asked about the controversy surrounding the Halls Farm pig farm development plan in Newtownabbey, Mr Simpson said his was “miniature compared to that”.