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Engineers to start investigation at old gas works

(January 20, 2009)
THE green light has be given for five days of tests on potentially contaminated land at the well-used environmental recycling centre at the end of Furnax Lane in Warminster will start next Monday (January 26th) writes Paul Macdonald
A problem is suspected dating back to the days when it was the home to a gas works.

Engineers commissioned by the county council as owners will be working round the clock drilling bore holes as part of the tests at the well-run 'tip'.
Andy Conn, waste services manager, said: "This is essential work but we aim minimise disruption for people using the household recycling centre."
Unlike the time it is taking to complete the widening of the pavements in the town centre which is being run by the district council the work should be quickly completed.

"Contractors will be working day and night on this so that we can carry out the work as quickly as possible," explained Mr. Conn.

"I should stress that there is no danger to the public at the moment."

"We appreciate the assistance of the users while this work is ongoing."

People will still be able to use the centre while the work is going on. However, there is the remote possibility that the site might have to shut at very short notice.
There are also mini recycling centres dotted around the town in public house, club and public car parks.

Following the week of drilling boreholes there will be a further two months of gas monitoring.

The chance of a closure is remote but could come about if the drilling causes subsidence and so makes part of the site unsafe for the public rather than the contaminants themselves.

In the longer term the county council plans to open a new household recycling centre at the highways depot close to the entrance to Furnax Lane off Bath Road.

The aim is to have the new site open and working before the old site is permanently closed to keep the transition smooth for people using the recycling centre.

A planning application has now been submitted. It is expected to come before Wiltshire County Council in March.

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