Anaerobic Digester - Garlic Lane

There is an Anaerobic Digester (AD), operated by Biogen, south of the M3 just past the Farleigh bridge over the motorway.  It is supposed to take locally-sourced food waste and turn it into methane gas (to power an electricity generator) and leave a ‘digestate’ that can be used on local farms as a fertiliser. 


However food waste is now brought in from as far away as East Anglia, Kent and even Nottinghamshire.  Also, because the facility produces digestate 24x7, all year round, there are long periods when this cannot be spread on local fields, so it has to be taken away in large tankers.  All of this means a large number of HGVs every week passing through the residential roads of Hatch Warren, which substantially undermines the ‘green’ credentials of the site.

The operators of the Plant applied for the one year time limit on their permission for up to 38 vehicle movements per day to be made permanent.  The HCC Regulatory Committee on 20 March 2019 granted permission but with amended conditions :

  • A longer exclusion period for HGV movements in the morning to protect children waiting for school buses as well as children going to the Primary School

  • A condition limiting the average number of vehicle movements to a maximum of 32 per day to give headroom for the use of smaller food waste delivery vehicles


SWAG is fortunate to have a hard working representative on the Liaison Committee for the Anaerobic Digester.  

One of many large HGVs photographed  heading through Hatch Warren to service the Anaerobic Digester at prohibited times - this one at 8:46 am in school term time