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Friends of the Earth hits out at Highthorn mine plans

Campaigners ahead of Tuesday's meeting Photo: ITV Tyne Tees

Campaign group Friends of the Earth has criticised the decision by Northumberland County Council to give planning permission for an opencast coal mine.

More than 10,000 people have objected to the planning application by Bank’s Mining for a surface mine next to Druridge Bay, 30 miles north of Newcastle.

Friends of the Earth campaigner Guy Shrubsole called the developments a "terrible decision for the local community and their environment."

Druridge Bay is an incredibly special place. An opencast coalmine would damage its beauty, cause massive disruption and drive away tourists – all for the sake of a dying source of energy that’s wrecking our climate.

Friends of the Earth will stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the many thousands of local people who oppose this ill-conceived scheme."

– Friends of the Earth campaigner Guy Shrubsole

The Banks Group said the scheme would create at least 100 full-time jobs.

Northumberland County Council leader Grant Davey said while he appreciated it was a controversial issue, the mine would bring much needed jobs to the area and boost economic growth in the county.

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