Initial response to Junction 33 planning application

Wednesday 20th September 2017

Smithy Wood, by Billy ChapmanSmithy Wood, by Billy Chapman

Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust has written to Sheffield City Council to continue our objection to controversial proposals to build a major motorway service area on Smithy Wood, following the submission of a formal planning application by Applegreen for a development at Junction 33 of the M1.

The Junction 33 application has an impact on the proposals to build on Smithy Wood - an ancient woodland and Local Wildlife Site - and on 14 August, representatives of MSA Extra, the developers behind the Smithy Wood proposals, wrote to Sheffield City Council asking for their application to be temporarily placed “on hold” to allow suitable time for the Junction 33 application to be determined by Rotherham Council. MSA Extra suggested that rival company Applegreen's application should be submitted by the end of September.

The Trust's letter can be downloaded below. We will soon assess the Junction 33 application itself on ecological grounds.

Liz Ballard, CEO of Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust, commented: "Whilst we continue to question whether there is a need for an MSA on this stretch of motorway at all, the J33 proposal illustrates that Smithy Wood could be avoided altogether as a location, which is one of the key planning tests for developing such important ecological sites.

“It shows that there is no ‘special need’ to develop land that should continue to be protected as a local wildlife site for the benefit of local people. As we have always said, irreplaceable ancient woodland and local wildlife should be protected and not destroyed.”

More than 7,000 people have objected to the Smithy Wood plans since the proposal was made in summer 2013.

For the latest updates on our 'Save Smithy Wood' campaign, please visit

The application can be viewed here and is open to public consultation until 20th October.


FilenameFile size
final_srwt_objection_5_-_smithy_wood.pdf574 KB