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Contaminated land

Sefton Borough has a legacy of land contamination as a consequence of historical industrial land uses that varies significantly in its nature and extent across the Borough. The range of industries is extensive and includes gas works, tar distillation works, tin smelters and tanneries among others. The deposition of waste materials has occurred at a number of locations and in a variety of circumstances, such as, infilling of excavations, land reclamation works, landfill sites, road construction and sea defences.

However, there are still areas that may be affected by contamination that can be addressed when land is developed (or redeveloped) under the planning system, independently by landowners or under the contaminated land regime under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

Development Control

Under the Planning Regime land contamination, or the possibility of it, is a material planning consideration that the Local Planning Authority must consider when determining applications for planning permission.

The Council’s Unitary Development Plan sets out the policies that are applied in the consideration of all development proposals. 

Development will only be permitted where sufficient information is provided to verify that the potential contamination can be dealt with by remediation, such that the proposed development is shown to be viable, will be suitable for its new use, and will not place the users of the proposed development and neighbouring land uses or environment at unacceptable risk.

Advice to assist developers and their advisors involved with the investigation, assessment and remediation of land potentially affected by contamination through the planning process is provided in the Contaminated Land Guidance. 

Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990

Under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, Sefton Council has a statutory duty to inspect its area to identify land that meets the statutory definition of contaminated land and ensure that it is managed in an appropriate manner.

Sefton Council’s Contaminated Land Inspection Strategy sets out how the Council undertakes its inspection duties to identify land that may present unacceptable risks to human health or the wider environment. A copy of the Inspection Strategy is available to download.

Public Register

Sefton Council maintains a Public Register of particulars relating to contaminated land as required by section 78R of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. The details of information to be included on the Public Register are set out in The Contaminated Land (England) Regulations 2006.

The Public Register is held at Sefton Council’s offices at Magdalen House, Bootle. If you would like to view the register, please contact a member of the Contaminated Land Team.

Environmental Information Request

Sefton Council’s Contaminated Land Team holds historic records and information that could be used as part of an assessment of land potentially affected by contamination. Information can be obtained through the Environmental Information Regulations (2004).

Requests can be submitted to the Contaminated Land Team and should include as a minimum a scale plan (including grid reference) of the site and details of the information that is required.

Contacting the Contaminated Land Team

If you have any queries concerning land contamination issues, or require any further information, please contact a member of the Contaminated Land Team.

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