Campaigners against a bid to develop Dean Quarry near St Keverne have described themselves as “cautiously optimistic” this week following the news that the company behind it has pulled out of planning talks.

Shire Oak Quarries Limited has written to Cornwall Council asking that its planning application to support the full reopening of the quarry be withdrawn “with immediate effect.”

The council confirmed on Thursday that the plans for a reception building, fuel storage area, fencing, processing plant, explosive store and parking were no longer being applied for at this time.

It was the second time that authority was to have considered this application, having initially granted permission to Shire Oak in April last year.

However, the group Campaign Against Dean Super Quarry (CADs), set up in the parish to fight the development at the quarry, launched a legal challenge in the decision. Members argued that it was unlawful and, due to the scale of the development, an environmental-impact assessment should have been asked for.

In December the High Court ruled in the group’s favour, quashing the original permission.

Yesterday, following the news that Shire Oak had now withdrawn the application entirely, a spokesperson for the campaigners said: “CADS are cautiously optimistic. The developer’s decision to withdraw initial plans to re-open Dean Quarry is a significant step in the right direction for our communities.

“However, the group are pragmatic and believe that if the UK government give the green-light for a tidal lagoon, then the developer will attempt to re-apply for planning permission to re-open and upscale Dean Quarry.”

Earlier this month the government announced it was to conduct a review into the potential for energy to be produced through tidal lagoons.

Shire Oak’s sister company, Tidal Lagoon Swansea Bay, is behind a pilot project they hope to launch off the Bristol Channel and the St Keverne quarry was to have produced rock to build it.

CADS has vowed to “continue to share their concerns” about the use of rock from Dean Quarry with the Department of Energy and Climate Change, as part of the government review of tidal lagoons, the results of which are not expected until this autumn.

“In the meantime, CADS will closely monitor any planning developments at Dean Quarry and would like to thank everyone for their generous contributions of time and money to date,” added the spokesperson.

There is still minerals consent to operate Dean Quarry until August 2035.

The Packet has contacted Shire Oaks Quarries Limited for a statement.