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Praise For Positive Impact Of Potash Mine Near Whitby

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Published by Karen Liu at 1:36pm 25th June 2018 (Updated 1:37pm 25th June 2018)

By Carl Gavaghan, Local Democracy Reporter

 

A controversial scheme to build the world’s largest potash mine on national park land near Whitby is giving back to the communities surrounding it, it was claimed today.

 

Members of the North York Moors National Park’s executive committee heard how hundreds of thousands of pounds was being invested into projects by Sirius Minerals, the mine’s operator.

 

The Scarborough-based company was granted permission to build on land at Dove’s Nest Farm in Sneatonthorpe, just outside the popular seaside destination, in October 2015.

 

When it goes into production the site will be the world’s largest potash mine.

 

The plan to build the mine was opposed by conservation groups who objected to the disruption it would cause within a national park.

 

However, councillors were told on Monday that between now and next April the joint Sirius and North York Moors National Park scheme has earmarked £510,494 to enhance schemes to benefit the tourism industry, archaeological, geology and environmental initiatives.

 

Among projects to receive help will be the Endeavour Experience in Whitby, which is based onboard the replica of Captain James Cook’s ship which arrived in the town’s harbour earlier this month.

 

Briony Fox, the authority’s Director of Polyhalite Projects, said of the project:

 

“The Endeavour Experience has the potential to be an extremely valuable tourism product for the North York Moors National Park and the Yorkshire Coast as a whole with significant regional, national and international interest, appealing to both a domestic and overseas market.
Estimated visitor figures are in the region of 150,000 per year, with key target markets including day-trippers, families, school groups, local and international visitors and corporate guests.
The attraction aims to boost the tourism economy to Whitby by establishing a new international attraction and creating 20 jobs in year one.”

 

The project will be given just short of £44,000. Scarborough Council has also been given approximately £50,000 to promote the forthcoming Cook 250 festival, which will take place in Whitby next month – making 250 years since Cook’s first expedition to the South Seas.

 

The meeting in Helmsley was also told that the park had exceeded its tree planting target for the first year.

 

More than 11,000 have been planted in the first 12 months as part of the carbon offset measures.
Councillors welcomed the progress made and hoped for similar success for 1018/19.

 

Cllr Caroline Patmore said:

 

“I do think that people in the national park and its visitors do know that they are benefiting from Sirius’ mine as many considered it would be a scar on the landscape.”
On Friday, work started on the 23-mile long tunnel, which will transport the fertiliser between the Whitby mine and the handling facility in Redcar.

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