MOST meat eaters love the smell of sizzling bacon, but neighbours of a hog roasting firm are kicking up a stink over piggy smells emanating from the business’ kitchen.
People living close to Executive Catering and Coach Services, near Durham City, are pig sick of the unpleasant odours they say fill the air around the firm’s premises, at 107A High Street, Carrville.
Indeed, blood boiled such that the issue was brought before a Durham County Council planning committee.
Parish councillor Walter Meikle told the County Hall assembly Executive’s actions were damaging residents’ quality of life.
Residents wanted councillors to refuse Executive, a family firm of more than a quarter of a century’s standing, permission to: retain 15 solar panels installed in August, a shipping container used for storage for the last 15 years, an associated fridge and freezer and an area of hard standing; build a timber storage shed; and install an extraction flue above a garage.
Nine residents wrote to the council to complain and Belmont Parish Council also objected, criticising the firm’s working hours and noise.
Planning officer Alan Dobie told the meeting that it would be preferable for the business to be on an industrial estate but that option was not on the table.
Environmental health officer John Dodds said the extraction system would not significantly increase noise levels and he expected Executive to work with him to resolve any issues.
The firm’s website says growth in the popularity of hog roasts in the last five years has far exceeded its expectations. It now has seven roasting machines, each capable of cooking an 85kg pig and producing around 200 portions of meat.
Philip Hewitson, whose parents Terrance and Annette co-own the firm, told councillors: “As any other company in this economy, we’re trying to adapt to demand.
“We’re hoping to produce a more friendly environment for our neighbours.”
Coun Paul Taylor moved approving planning consent, Coun Pauline Charlton seconded the motion and it was approved unanimously, with a condition that the extraction system is only used between 7am and 5pm.