No change of Essex munitions testing

A TENDRING councillor who wrote to the Prime Minister after receiving hundreds of complaints about noise and damage allegedly caused by explosions has been told there will be no change.

A TENDRING councillor who wrote to the Prime Minister after receiving hundreds of complaints about noise and damage allegedly caused by explosions has been told there will be no change.

Roy Smith, councillor for Golf Green, received complaints from residents in Jaywick, Clacton and Frinton claiming that munitions testing across the water at Shoeburyness in south Essex had damaged windows and plasterwork on their properties.

Last month Mr Smith wrote to Tony Blair expressing his concerns about the impact the range was having on Tendring residents.

In a letter from the Defence Procurement Agency, Mr Smith was told the contractor which operates the site on behalf of the Ministry of Defence makes "every effort" to reduce the impact of its activities on the environment and the site's neighbours.


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However, it stated: "In terms of environmental noise levels, I can confirm that environmental legislation does not specify noise limits."

It also stated that Shoeburyness was the only site in the UK which would conduct testing of larger calibre weapons in preparation for war and terrorist attacks.

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"Moving to a less inhabited area of the country would incur significant expenditure on the purchase of additional land, staff, accommodation and transport," it said.

But yesterday, Mr Smith said that expense was being put before people's peace of mind and well-being.

He said: "Since July 12 it seems to have been quieter – there is no explanation for that, but hopefully some action is being taken.

"Some of the noise and vibrations are so serious that I have had reports of glazed panels in windows being broken.

"I still believe these things should be done in a more reasonable area – if the public don't get peace of mind we shall continue our protest."

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