White Horse Alliance - A350 Westbury Bypass Campaign

Inquiry day: 9

Inquiry date: 1 July 2008

See notes part 1; part 2; part 3; part 4

Inquiry index

Notes, part 1

Original document(PDF): Day_9_Salder.pdf

Day Nine

Mr Randall said that the main scheme business case, containing the corrected HGV figures has been completed and has begun to be distributed. A short note is expected to be available detailing the changes.

Mr Helps is to prepare a short supplementary proof containing corrections to his original evidence. Mr Helps will be recalled and will appear on Thursday afternoon (3 July).

Piers Sadler

Evidence in Chief

Mr Sadler was asked to read section 1.1.4 of his proof.

Mr Sadler was asked to read from section 5.1.1 until the end of his proof.

Mr Sadler was asked to read section 2 of his rebuttal proof.

Cross Examination

RP2.1.1. Guidance from 1998, in process of being superseded. Any indication of when new guidance likely to be adopted?

-Not aware

Essentially the 1998 guidance is still in effect?


Policy in principle to object to development, unless risk 'not unacceptable'. Understanding of term 'not unacceptable'.

-Presumption against development in SPZ1. If developer can show that local conditions are different, or design conditions can mitigate risks, EA will accept proposal.

Second layer should prevent residual leakage. Common/standard practice in SPZ?

-Has not been done historically, expect will become standard practice.

How regularly would drains be inspected?

-Not aware

Part of overall monitoring scheme?


Has that plan been finalised?


When will be finalised?

-Not aware

Will that be a condition of planning permission?

-Not aware

-Will be working out detailed designs with EA, will consult on inspection regimes.

With respect to groundwater and contaminated land, what licenses will scheme require from EA?

-Won't require licenses

-EA in position to stop construction or to prosecute polluter.

For example, if material has to be removed from the former landfill. Would require license?


-Was thinking specifically of water

-Would need to agree waste management issues with EA.

Issue of monitoring of water. 2.4.1 of rebuttal. Monitoring for turbidity by Wessex Water. What other monitoring will Wessex Water carry out?

-Routine monitoring

-Wessex Water responsibility to provide clean water.

Monitoring during construction. What about contamination from chemical sources that would not affect turbidity?

-Still subject to agreement with Wessex Water.

If there were to be contamination of water supply, how would be remediated?

-Would depend on type and extent of contamination. May result in well being switched off.

-Water table could be dug out, could be cleaned with steam.

Responsibility for remediation?

-With contractor, or party responsible for spill.

IF there were to be a contamination from a hydrocarbon spill into the aquifer, who would be responsible?

-Driver or company or insurance company

-EA would be involved

-Unlikely situation

Provision surely should be made even for rare events?

-Very difficult for hypothetical situation to occur in SPZ

-Has been designed out.

-Would have less effect outside SPZ.

FP1.2.6. Refer to appendices 11.2 and 11.3 of ES. Outline contaminated land risk management strategy. Dated 6 Nov 2006. EDS Pg 38, Table 7. Summary of risks and mitigation strategies. Since Nov 2006, how much further has strategy progressed?

-Has not progressed

Is work continuing?


-Further work will be done by contractor

-CLR8 contains kind of contaminants that might be expected from landfill. Very benign site compared to others. Risks posed are minimal.

Appendix 11.3. Table A. Testing results. Material that is present in existing landfill?

-Water that has washed off landfill.

FP2.5.11. No special measures required for gas. Appendix 11.3. Gas monitoring carried out, concentrations of methane significantly higher – 10%. Relatively high level?


Actually explosive?


No special measures?

-Concentration only one part of issue. Rate of generation means monitoring not required.

FP3.3.1. Appendix 11.3 pg11. The desk study recommended intrusive investigations. Have been undertaken?


Some ground disturbance inevitably occur. Appendix 11.3 s4.3 - driven piled foundation. State at 3.3.3 that least favoured approach. Why is least favoured?

-Would not want to make pathway between source of contamination and potential receptor.

Decisions over what methods will be used?

-Excavation replacement. Details will come out later.

Left with driven piling, dynamic compaction, vibro stone columns. Which most likely?

-Not aware

Would EA approval be required for driven piling?

-Would seek agreement for any method.

-Believe only excavation would require official approval.

-Require risk assessment if piling used.

Driven piling an option at present time?


What depth is limestone?

-Not sure, not particularly far down.

What potential difficulties for dynamic compaction?

-Only normal construction management.

Have voids containing contaminated water. What effect would DC have?

-Get smaller. Contaminated water would move upwards.

What sort of assessment has been done for DC?

-No particular risk involved with increasing pressure on water.

No risk of contamination of water table?


How would Vibro Stone Columns be constructed?

-Piling machine push down a tube, columns vibrated into place. Strengthen land between columns

FP4.1.4. Reference to Environmental Emergency Plan. Has been drawn up?


Not incorporated into CMP presently?

-Not in detail

FP4.1.6. Risk of contamination of Well Head. Risk low provided liner properly installed. How would liner be tested?

-Not aware

FP5.3.3. Cuttings along route. What distance between water table and excavation cutting?

-Chalford 2.2 m, Newtown 3.9m. Distance between top of water table and bottom of scheme.

Levels of aquifers change. Assessment of probability of rise 3m and effect on scheme?

-FP3.2.8. Haven't looked at probability, but accepted possibility.

Possibility of underpass flooding?

-No, drains would take water away.

If level of aquifer did rise by 3m, could be a medium term event?

-Could occur for a period of weeks

Drainage system adequate?



Mr Sadler said that the thicknesses identified in ES 11.19, 11.20 may actually be feet rather than metres. Has no relevant effect on evidence.

Mr Sadler said no more assessments were required following the publication of the 2006 strategies.

Mr Sadler was asked how the risk of a hydrocarbon spillage in the aquifer had been designed out. Mr Sadler said that the road goes through a false cutting. The side of the road will have a 1m concrete barrier, similar to a motorway barrier, which will prevent vehicles leaving the road.

Inspector's Questions

Mr Yellowley referred Mr Sadler to section 5.4.2 of his proof. Mr Yellowley asked what operational arrangements with Wessex Water would be in place. Mr Sadler said that lines of communication would be open. The contractor would keep in touch with WW to say what activities were taking place. WW would be made aware of emergency plans. The contractor would be fed information on monitoring.

Mr Langton referred Mr Sadler to section 2.4.9 of his proof, and asked if it was in fact possible for there to be two principle groundwater flow directions. Mr Sadler said that it was in this particular location.

Mr Langton asked what type of asbestos was in the site. Mr Sadler said that it was the less severe type, which was bonded with cement. The asbestos is to be left in situ.

Notes, part 2

Original document(PDF): Day_9_Tindale.pdf

Day Nine

Julia Tindale

Examination in Chief

Ms Tindale was asked to read her summary proof.

Ms Tindale was referred to s6.7 of her full proof and asked if discussions with local landowners had progressed. Ms Tindale referred to s5.17 of her proof. She said that there continued to be issues Mr Painter, Mr and Mrs Shepherd and also with Mrs Britton, who has a paddock at the back of her house.

Cross Examination

SP8. Many hectares of agricultural land lost to production. Don't disagree with statement as a statement of fact?


SP9. Detailed examination of alternative routes?


Non-road build option would not cause loss of agricultural land?


FP3.14. Would agree with statement as a statement of fact?


FP3.17. Is it the case that the scheme has been directed to land of lowest grade?

-One consideration of number of planning factors

-Does include some BAMVL

What consideration was given to trying to avoid BAMVL, or is it unavoidable?

-Not personally involved in route alignment process, but would have been one factor

Within E corridor, is there land available which is of a lower grade?

-Cannot say categorically, but same applies to W route

FP3.18. Presumably not the Council's case that scheme will encourage diversification?


-However scheme would not have effect on rural economy

No agricultural or forestry justification for scheme?


Essential transport improvement placed on a par with schemes of national importance?

-Not field of expertise

Agree that scheme is a development proposal in the open countryside?

-Not aware of how to define open countryside

-Agriculture part of countryside

FP3.19. Understanding of local level?

-Matter for LA's to decide what is 'best and most versatile land'.

-For LA's to decide whether BAMVL can be developed.

-Importance judged within local context.

Include SWRA?

-Yes, part of process

Fall within local level?

-Not with local planning authorities

Sec of State needs to take into consideration need to conserve BAMVL?

-Lot less emphasis on protecting land compared to other environmental factors.

East of Westbury is predominantly arable. West more livestock.


FP5.3. Total of 50 hectares affected. 38 permanently affected. Effect on remaining 12 hectares?

-Some of 12 hec not actually agricultural

-Affected during construction.

-Restored with existing soil material.

Of 12 hectares, breakdown of how much under livestock or arable?

-Information not available, however the majority is arable land. No objections from landowners regarding regrading and restoration.

Possibility land may not be as suitable after regrading?

-Would probably take 1-2 years to come back into agricultural use.

Provided the restoration and reclamation works, the 12 hectares returned to current use?

-That would be the expectation, providing farmers agree

FP5.8. Significance criteria solely based on area?


-20 hectares common cut off point.

-Stringent criteria.

If just over one more hectare affected, would go up to moderate adverse?


Distinction between slight adverse and moderate adverse.

-Arable farms suffer greater adverse effect.

-Overall viability of holdings not in doubt.

FP5.18. Potential mitigation measures. Have things moved on in terms of mitigation measures since ES published?

-Discussions with landowners ongoing.

FP6.4. 0.015% of county's arable land being affected. Is there any indication of of value of agricultural production lost?

-Rough figures can be worked out from area of arable land and current prices.

-Affected farms not going to go out of business.

Permanent loss of 38 hec. Almost 20 hec BAMVL. In terms of overall cost/benefit assessment, has loss of land been factored in?

-Any scheme would affect similar area of land

This scheme is the subject of the inquiry. Loss of value of production relevant.

-In context of wider economy.

-Very difficult to assess exact value, especially as prices change.

Agree that relevant consideration?

-Drop in the ocean.

Very small percentage of county's land. What is value of agricultural production in Wiltshire?

-Do not have figure.

Inspector's Questions

Mr Yellowley asked for the source of the significance criteria in Tables 5.3 and 5.4 of Ms Tindale's full proof. Ms Tindale said it was common practice to use these criteria, but there is no source, as there is no definitive criteria.

Notes, part 3

Original document(PDF): Day_9_Ireland.pdf

Day Nine

Peter Ireland

Evidence in Chief

Dr Ireland was asked to read para 1.5 of his full proof.

Dr Ireland was asked to read from para S.2 until the end of his summary proof.

Dr Ireland was asked to read para 4.5 of his full proof.

Cross Examination

FP2.5. Is there any guidance in respect to sampling use of footpaths and bridleways?

-Surveys should be representative.

-Carried out on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Satisfied that adequately representative sample?


Particular reason why there are no more recent survey data?

-No more data is required.

-Have in my mind indication of how extensively footpaths are used

FP2.10. Suggestion that footpaths used more recently than in the past. Has there been a general increase over the past six years?

-Relates more to footpaths at the northern end of the scheme.

FP4.1. Appendix C. Pg23 - Bridleway West 36. Moderate adverse change. Is that effect predicted to change by Year 15 or any subsequent date?

-Something that Ms Betts looked at

-Right of way covers linear length. Worst visual impact where crosses bypass. Effect diminishes further away from bypass. Will moderate over time, apart from where right over bypass.

Definitions of assessment, taken from DMRB?


-Referring to visual assessment.

Amenity value and visual impact assessments not the same thing?


-Prime considerations visual and oral

Assessment of moderate adverse a combination of amenity value and visual impact assessments?


Same applied to each bridleway and footpath?


Bridleway West 37. Substantial adverse. Unlikely to change over time?


Bridleway West 35. Substantial adverse. Unlikely to change?


Bridleway West 51. Substantial adverse.

-Going to get substantial adverse anywhere where a bypass crosses a right of way.

Public viewing point for the White Horse. How close will road be to this viewing point?

-Toe next door to embankment – immediately adjoining

Impact on amenity value for visitors to the viewing point?

-From visual point of view, visitors would be looking in the other direction – therefore no impact.

-From noise point of view, given the proximity to road, the car park would be in an acoustic shadow – noise levels not as high as might be expected.

Would not be unaware that road is there?


-But traffic also on Bratton Road

Traffic flows on Bratton Rd nothing like would be on scheme?


FP5.2. (a). Inaccurate description?

-Will be 4 metres, not 12 ft.

-Will be unlit, will be concrete box culvert.

FP5.7. Are measures part of proposed scheme?

-No - was merely suggesting that they could be done.

Any reason why not included in the scheme proposal?

-No reason.

-Was looking at possible minor improvements to design

Were measures to be taken, would effect remain substantial adverse?

-Possibly could be moved down scale.

Non-road build option would not have impact on footpaths and bridleways?


Users of Wessex Ridgeway not addressed in proof. Any particular reason?


Wessex Ridgeway described as equivalent to national trail on OS map.

-A national route, such as the Wessex Ridgeway as aspirations of being a national trail, but is not currently.

-WR runs from Lyme Regis to Avebury.

-Long distance route, but not a national trail.

Any information on public use of WR in terms of numbers?

-No information exists

Mr Morland's Questions

Dr Ireland said that there would be no conflict between bat screens and public footpaths.


Dr Ireland said that he was mistaken in saying that the toe of the car park would be next to the embankment.

Inspector's Questions

Mr Langton noted that the land to construct a new bridleway would have to be compulsory purchased and asked whether it was necessary for the construction of the bypass. Dr Ireland said that he was not 100% sure that the bridleway was absolutely needed, but said it would provide a combination of compensation and enhancement – mainly enhancement.

Dr Ireland conceded that Footpath 28 would become a cul-de-sac. He said this was unusual and does seem to be slightly illogical.

Dr Ireland was asked about the proposed steps on Footpath Heywood 15. Dr Ireland said that steps were proportional to the usage.

Dr Ireland said that Grassy Slopes bridleway referred to in para 5.2(a) of his full proof 'could well attract the local youth' and be a venue for anti-social behaviour. Dr Ireland said that the lack of light may dissuade youths from visiting the culvert.

Notes, part 4

Original document(PDF): Day_9_Hawkins.pdf

Day Nine

Mike Hawkins

Cllr Hawkins read from a statement. His mains points were:

Westbury Town Council voted not to oppose the Eastern route.

The health and wellbeing of residents living along the present route of the A350 outweighs environmental considerations.

The claim that bypass would ruin view of White Horse is unfounded.

Most opponents of the scheme from are from outside Westbury.

Many members of the A350 corridor alliance appear to favour a Western route, yet the literature of the group indicates complete opposition to all 'road improvements' from the M4 to the South Coast.

The present scheme offers the only realistic chance of relieving Westbury's traffic problems.

Cross Examination

Is it not the case that WTC had a preference for a W route for many years?

-Not since involvement in council began in 2003

No personal experience of situation before 2003?


When did WTC first vote to support E route?

-March 2007

-WTC did not oppose E route in 2005

Did they vote?

-To the best of my knowledge, yes

-Voted in support of a E route

To the best of your knowledge, have the people of Westbury ever been offered an alternative option, in the form of a non-road build option?

-Not to my knowledge

Would you agree that one of the effects of WCC adopting the E route as a prefereance has been to divide the community?

-Some oppose either route

-Vast majority don't care which site – pro-bypass, but not in either camp

People of WSB never been offered an alternative to a bypass?

-Not to my knowledge.

WHA123. Newspaper transcript. 18/01/07 White Horse News. Meeting between Fleur de Rhe-Philipe and WTC. Presumably meeting took place before 18/01?


Before WTC voted whether to support scheme?


Phillipe told councillors that if they did not approve application, town could be waiting a very long time for a bypass. Rhe-Philipe said an E route only plausible route. No question of any other route or bypass. What influence did these statements have on members of the WTC?

-No influnece on me

-Also told to vote for untary authoruty, voted against

-WTC do not accept instructions

Statement that if coulcillors did not vote in favour, they might weight a very long time had no influence?

-No influence

Rhe-Philipe also threatened a withdrawal of funding for town centre?

-No influence

Speaking for yourself or for WTC?


Warminster journal article. Reporting same meeting. Warnings had no influence?

-Govt had provided funding for other places like Semington, govt would fund other route.

Fact that the Yarnbrook/West Ashton scheme withdrawn had no effect?


Half a dozen members had 'prejudicial interests'. How many councillors in WSB?


Up to 6 barred from voting. How is a prejudicial interest defined?

-A prejudicial interest is a conflict of interest where any thinking person would believe that a Cllr or member of a Cllr's family would benefit personally from a measure adopted by the council.

Were 6 Cllrs predominantly from the E of the town?

-Almost all lived on E of town, or had property or relatives on E of town.

Any Cllrs from W of town not permitted?

-Cllr Hulin

-Cllr Bray – owned land from Heywood.

-Cllr Hawker lives Westbury Leigh

-Balanced number living W, E and TC.

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