Rookery South Pit is a 90 hectare former brick clay extraction pit near Stewartby in Bedfordshire.
This is located south of Stewartby village and to the east of the Marston Vale Millennium Country Park.
The pit site was identified as a potential strategic site by the former Bedfordshire County Council in its Waste Site selection process in 2007.
A Development Consent Order was granted by a Panel of Commissions appointed by the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC) for a resource recovery facility (link opens in new window) on 13 October 2011.
This was the first application to be determined through the Nationally Significant Infrastructure Planning (NSIP) process established by The Planning Act 2008 and undertaken by the Planning Inspectorate.
Both Central Bedfordshire and Bedford Borough councils submitted petitions of general objection to parliament against the issue of the order.
The Special Committee that was formed to hear the petitions and found that there was no case to answer except in respect to the impact on the proposed Bedford to Milton Keynes waterway (link opens in new window).
The Development Consent Order (DCO) was therefore issued 25 March 2013 after a Section 106 agreement was drawn up requiring Covanta to contribute up to £3,375,000 towards the cost of the works required for construction of the waterway.
The DCO remains valid for five years from the date of its issue. This means construction has to start by 25 March 2018 or the DCO runs out.
Any company could construct the Resource Recovery Facility provided that it conformed to the approved Plans and they obtained the requisite Environment Agency permit and other approvals required to commence development.
This is a copy of The Rookery South (Resource Recovery Facility) Order 2011 (PDF 218.9KB) from 25 March 2013. The Section 106 agreement linked to the Development Consent Order can be found here - Section 106 Agreement dated 18 July 2011 (PDF 10.9MB) and Section 106 Agreement Deed dates 11 March 2013 (PDF 4.6MB) .