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New storm blows up over wind farm

CAMPAIGNERS battling to prevent a wind farm being built in Denshaw are furious that many of their supporters could be prevented from attending a crucial meeting.

Planning chiefs are set to rule on February 23 on the controversial proposal to build seven 365ft high turbines on greenbelt land above the village.

But the crunch meeting of Oldham Council’s planning committee will take place in the Civic Centre’s council chamber — which can accommodate only 200 people.

With more than 300 protesters recently attending a public meeting on the plans and hundreds more known to be strongly against the windfarm, angry environmental campaigners say many will not be able to squeeze into the room.

They argue it is against their democratic rights.

Questions have also been raised that both sides will only get three minutes to put forward their case.

Alan Roughley, the chairman of Saddleworth Moors Action Group, said: “It’s extraordinary that this application has taken over two years to come before the planning committee, due, so we are told, to the developers being slow in providing necessary supporting information.

“I regret that the meeting will be held in the council chamber with limited public accommodation and no facilities for projecting photographs.

“Many of our supporters would like to exercise their democratic right to observe the discussions by members of the planning committee... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
Planning chiefs are set to rule on February 23 on the controversial proposal to build seven 365ft high turbines on greenbelt land above the village.

But the crunch meeting of Oldham Council’s planning committee will take place in the Civic Centre’s council chamber — which can accommodate only 200 people.

With more than 300 protesters recently attending a public meeting on the plans and hundreds more known to be strongly against the windfarm, angry environmental campaigners say many will not be able to squeeze into the room.

They argue it is against their democratic rights.

Questions have also been raised that both sides will only get three minutes to put forward their case.

Alan Roughley, the chairman of Saddleworth Moors Action Group, said: “It’s extraordinary that this application has taken over two years to come before the planning committee, due, so we are told, to the developers being slow in providing necessary supporting information.

“I regret that the meeting will be held in the council chamber with limited public accommodation and no facilities for projecting photographs.

“Many of our supporters would like to exercise their democratic right to observe the discussions by members of the planning committee before they reach their final decision.”

Mr Roughley said he was surprised that the speakers would have only three minutes but accepted it was the council’s standard rule.

Oldham Council is set to hold a briefing tomorrow when details of the meeting will be released. A spokesman said they could not comment until then.

TV star and wildlife expert David Bellamy and Oldham East and Saddleworth MP Phil Woolas are amongst the high-profile opponents against the windfarm.    

Source: http://www.oldham-chronicle...

JAN 23 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/1047-new-storm-blows-up-over-wind-farm
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