A VITAL deadline has passed in the plans for a quarry extension near Romsey.

The application, from Raymond Brown Quarry Products Ltd, seeks to extend Roke Manor Quarry in Salisbury Road, Shootash.

If given the green light, around 600,000 tonnes of sand and gravel will be extracted from the site.

And if approved, work could potentially take place between 7am and 6pm Monday to Friday, while on Saturday hours would be between 8am and 12.30pm.

The deadline for residents’ comments passed last week.

It comes as fears have been raised by residents over noisy machines.

A TVBC document revealed the predicted level of noise “would be up to 18dB above the existing background sound level”, according to the council’s environmental health manager, Mark Lee.

He said this would be a “very substantial impact and is very concerning”, adding the noise will at times be “well above the guideline limit of up to 10dB above background”.

Previously, residents have slammed the proposals, with one man claiming three 200-year-old oak trees will be axed with others fearing they will be forced to endure hours of noisy machines at work.

However, a spokesperson from Raymond Brown Quarry Products Ltd said: “There is a clear and pressing need for additional mineral reserves to support the wider economy in this particular part of the county and Roke Manor Quarry is ideally placed to continue to meet that local demand.

“The proposed extension has been carefully designed to minimise impacts on both the environment and the local community and, upon restoration, will be returned to agriculture with enhanced wildlife habitat, exceeding national standards for Biodiversity Net Gain.”