Premier Foods is a major employer in Histon, probably the largest, and is a significant contributor to the local economy through employment and the spending of its employees at local businesses. It operates many of the businesses started up by Chivers in the middle of the 19th century and although most of the raw materials are now imported the products that go out today are little different to those which were shipped then.
What is different of course is public perception and tolerance of what it sees as irresponsible corporate behaviour and Premier Foods has had a run of bad news this year with the terrible smells from one of its effluent tanks making life a misery for residents of Histon who live close by and down wind.
To its credit Premier Foods has responded positively and has now submitted a planning application to erect a cover on the offending tank. It has already ordered the cover and if all goes well with the planning application it should be in place before Christmas.
County Councillor David Jenkins is pleased with this development. He commented: ‘I visited the site last month and was briefed by the general manager and the environment manager. I walked around the site and got a first hand experience of the smell of which local people complain.’
‘Whilst I was there I saw an aerial photograph of the Chivers site some 50 plus years ago. It covered a lot more than it does now; there was no B1049 and many of the houses in the village today just weren’t there. And of course there was the railway line and the station building which local people saved from demolition in 2007.
There’s more information about Chivers on the Histon and Impington community web-site.