BOSSES at Kronospan have spoken of their surprise over concerns that their expansion plans will cause a blight on the surrounding landscape.

Yesterday the Leader reported how senior figures at The National Trust, which runs nearby Chirk Castle, say the organisation is growing worried about issues regarding air quality, noise and pollution in the area affecting residents and the environment.

The concerns follow a planning application submitted by the company in recent weeks to install a new wood chip preparation facility. It also comes after a multi-million pound extension at the Chirk firm to install a new melamine facing press, which was allowed by appeal earlier this year despite having already been built.

Shane Logan, general manager for National Trust Chirk Castle, said: “We recognise the need for job creation and investment within our communities, but this must not be achieved at the expense of people’s health or the degradation of the associated landscape.

“Kronospan needs to seriously consider what environmental and corporate responsibility looks like for everyone.”

A spokesman for Kronospan said: “We are surprised at this statement. As far as we are concerned the Planning Inspector will have considered all the representations made in respect of the application for the Melamine Faced building before making the decision on our appeal.

“There is no direct impact on the registered park and garden of Chirk Castle other than the closed loop extraction system on top of the building, and the view of this is restricted by the local topography and existing vegetation.

“In the context of the existing industrial development, the development was not considered to significantly increase the impact on the historic environment.

“We have developed a landscape strategy which is currently with Wrexham Council for acceptance.

“National Trust representatives were involved in the development of this programme, which is intended to build on the successful planting programme that previously took place to screen the factory from view.”