Over 80 residents from the Creevy Road area, attended a Council Planning meeting at the Civic Centre on Monday to voice their opposition to proposals to develop an 80-acre greenfield site into a quarry.
Representatives of the company Conexpo gave a presentation to the councillors and explained that the quarry will create up to 30 jobs and boost the local economy by £6m annually.
The company wants to quarry a form of grit stone used for road construction projects and because of the growing demand from overseas the company wanted to secure its supplies.
During the meeting councillor James Baird said that there were already 170 existing and disused quarries around Lisburn alone.
Some councillors were concerned why Conexpo was seeking to open a new greenfield quarry rather than develop existing sites. Conexpo representative said they were limited as to where they could extract grit stone.
Speaking afterwards one of the residents Heather Armstrong, said: “Northern Ireland’s countryside is littered with thousands of disused mineral workings and existing quarries which are operating under capacity.
“The stone which is sought at Creevy is part of a huge seam which stretches through Down, Louth and Meath – it defies belief that Creevy is suitable.
“We are not opposed to the quarry industry, but we do believe that it is incumbent upon companies to responsibly develop existing quarries rather than open up new sites and create environmental damage elsewhere. If a precedent is set at Creevy, rural communities throughout NI would be exposed to similar developments.
“The local community is also concerned that there are long-term plans to extend quarrying activity at Creevy and introduce related activity such as tarmac works – issues which were not ruled out by “There are also serious concerns about how the local road infrastructure, particularly the B6 and Saintfield Road, would cope with increased heavy goods traffic, plus the impact that dust and blasting will have on residents and livestock, environmental damage and the visual effect on the Gary Stewart, a committee member of ‘No Creevy Quarry’,
“This is a quiet area with an established community and rural businesses such as stud farms and holiday cottage lettings.
The ‘No Creevy Quarry’ group has an active Facebook site with over 750 likes.
An information day will be held on June 19.