Devon County Councillor, Cllr Roger Giles objected to large test pits being dug on the land, which is high above the town of Ottery St Mary, because of fears that the ground could be destabilised, causing problems further down the hill, due to widespread local flooding, that took place last week and at the weekend.

But the Environment Agency and Devon County Council, said they were powerless to stop AI carrying out the work, and that the company had already gone beyond what they needed to do in law, to minimise disruption to the environment and notify residents.

In his response to this message from Devon County Council officer, Mike Deaton, Cllr Giles replied:

“I remain concerned that the work carried out this week with the water table probably very high could well have an adverse impact on the quality of water which is used by 100 people.

“Concerning your comment that they had gone further than they needed to by informing local residents – local residents and myself were given very little notice: a message on Friday morning about work commencing on Monday morning.”

For more information and photographs of the (considerable) work that has taken place visit http://straitgateactiongroup.blogspot.co.uk/