A campaigner has accused a government department of breaching planning control twice over its handling of silt dredged from Peel marina.

Some 10,000 tons of potential toxic silt dredged from the marina was dumped in a storage facility excavated in a field at Rockmount, on the Poortown Road, German, between April and May 2015.

Retrospective planning approval was secured in August that year on the condition that the storage facility would be temporary and used for a maximum of five years.

Then in 2020, the Department of Infrastructure (DoI) applied to make the Rockmount facility permanent but later withdrew that application.

Campaigner Trevor Cowin said: ‘The silt still remains in the ground and as a result the DoI is in breach of planning control.

‘Had it been convicted would have been liable to a fine of £5,000 per day for each day that the breach continues.

‘DEFA(Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture) has, however, refused to prosecute the DoI for its blatant breaches of planning control, which begs the question as to what it is there for and how it would treat a person who breached planning control.’

Then in March 2019 the planning committee approved an application by the DoI to construct a temporary lagoon facility in a field at Ballaterson Farm for dewatering and storing sediment dredged from Peel marina.

Once again, the facility - which is close to the proposed site of Peel’s new sewage works - was meant to be temporary and within five years, the lagoon and pipework was to be decommissioned and the site restored.

But the planning approval expires on March 8 next year and Mr Cowin claims nothing had been done to prepare for this.

He said: ‘There are 44,000 tons of silt from the marina lying in the lagoon and unless a miracle were to happen it will not be possible to remove before March 8, nor will it be possible to restore the site by that time.

‘So, on March 8 the DoI will be in breach of planning control in respect of two silt dumps.

‘Will DEFA grasp the nettle and do what it is there for and prosecute the DoI for its breaches?’