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Fritwell wind farm 'too near to homes', inquiry told

The Chesterfield-based company forced a public inquiry after Cherwell councillors unanimously voted against plans to build a £10m wind farm on land at Willowbank Farm, just south of the M40, last April. And yesterday residents took turns to tell planning inspector John Watson why he should throw out the appeal.

A wind farm would "utterly destroy" an open rural landscape making life unbearable for local residents, a planning inquiry has heard.

An inquiry opened today over proposals to build four giant wind turbines on farmland between Fewcott and Fritwell, just outside Bicester.

The packed council chamber, at Cherwell District Council's headquarters, in Bodicote, heard from district councillors, Ardley with Fewcott Parish Council, and Bolsterstone, the firm behind the proposal.

The Chesterfield-based company forced a public inquiry after Cherwell councillors unanimously voted against plans to build a 10m wind farm on land at Willowbank Farm, just south of the M40, last April.

And yesterday residents took turns to tell planning inspector John Watson why he should throw out the appeal.

Andrew Hunter, of Green Farm, Fritwell, said his home would be 450 metres from one of the turbines, which will stand 125 metres tall.

He said: "I am not against green alternatives, but what I am faced with is a turbine 450 metres away. I am the United Kingdom's guinea pig.

"This is the biggest threat the countryside has ever faced when you have got opportunistic companies like... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

A wind farm would "utterly destroy" an open rural landscape making life unbearable for local residents, a planning inquiry has heard.

An inquiry opened today over proposals to build four giant wind turbines on farmland between Fewcott and Fritwell, just outside Bicester.

The packed council chamber, at Cherwell District Council's headquarters, in Bodicote, heard from district councillors, Ardley with Fewcott Parish Council, and Bolsterstone, the firm behind the proposal.

The Chesterfield-based company forced a public inquiry after Cherwell councillors unanimously voted against plans to build a £10m wind farm on land at Willowbank Farm, just south of the M40, last April.

And yesterday residents took turns to tell planning inspector John Watson why he should throw out the appeal.

Andrew Hunter, of Green Farm, Fritwell, said his home would be 450 metres from one of the turbines, which will stand 125 metres tall.

He said: "I am not against green alternatives, but what I am faced with is a turbine 450 metres away. I am the United Kingdom's guinea pig.

"This is the biggest threat the countryside has ever faced when you have got opportunistic companies like this trying to squeeze four turbines on an 80-acre site.

"I have an awful lot of fight, as have the community."

Mr Hunter, who also lets business units from his farm, warned if the appeal was granted it would open the floodgates to similar schemes across the country.

Fewcott resident Hester Edlmann said: "Every single rear window of my property looks down towards Willowbank Farm.

"I love my garden and have spent nine years growing things and making it as beautiful as possible. I don't want to be sitting in my garden looking at industrial turbines."

Martin Lee, of Town Well End, Fritwell, also raised concerns the turbines could cause a blank spot in the radar air picture for London Oxford Airport, a few miles away.

The radio frequency engineer, who works for BAe Systems, said: "While helicopters may see the wind turbines and collision lights would be installed, Oxford airport would not see any aircraft in the area affected.

"Being so close to residential areas, as well as the M40 motorway, will only increase the likelihood of a greater disaster if a collision should occur."

The hearing continues and is expected to last six days.


Source: http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk...

MAR 9 2010
https://www.windaction.org/posts/25029-fritwell-wind-farm-too-near-to-homes-inquiry-told
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