Library filed under Zoning/Planning from UK
Plans for a wind farm which would power the equivalent of 10,000 homes in Leeds are to go on display. Residents are to be asked their views on the proposals for up to eight 80m (262ft) turbines on land at Hook Moor in Micklefield, near Garforth. Planners say feedback from the event will inform the final design of the development, which will be put before Leeds Council later this year. The exhibition was due to be held in Micklefield on Wednesday.
Community representatives in west Caithness have refused to rethink their opposition to a wind farm planned for Stempster. They deny they are out of step with local opinion and insist their stance would not preclude them seeking to maximise community benefits from the development were it to get the go-ahead. The chairman of Caithness West Community Council, Bill Brown, spoke out in response to a claim that the body was acting against the wishes of a "silent majority" in the area.
Controversial plans to build four 330ft-high wind turbines in a Derbyshire village have been thrown out. Planners from Derbyshire Dales District Council had recommended that permission for the turbines, at Carsington, be refused. And councillors unanimously agreed with that decision at a meeting last night.
Countryside campaigns have vowed to fight proposals to build a wind turbine on the Sussex Downs. Lewes District Council's planning committee last week voted in favour of a 70 metre turbine to supply energy to Glyndebourne Opera House. Planning officers had recommended the application be refused but at a packed meeting at Lewes Town Hall it was approved by six votes to four. But national organisations including the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), the Council for National Parks and the Ramblers Association are all staunchly opposed to the plan - and are now calling for a public enquiry into the council's decision. The proposal has so divided locals that it must be examined by communities secretary Hazel Blears before any work can start.
Plans for a major wind farm have been resubmitted after being thrown out in November. More than 500 people objected to the plans to put seven turbines on land at Stonish Hill and the former Bilsthorpe Colliery. The Ministry of Defence wrote to Newark and Sherwood District Council, saying the turbines might interfere with aircraft radar. And Rufford, Eakring and Bilsthorpe parish councils all objected because they feared the farm's size would dominate the landscape. Now Harworth Power and Eakring Farming Ltd have applied for permission to build the wind farm with five turbines, and say the development could provide power for 25 years. A decision on the new plans is expected next month.
Windfarm objectors are taking Highland Council to court over its approval of a 17-turbine scheme at Edinbane on Skye alleging the authority's consent of Amec's planning application breached EU environment legislation. The Skye Windfarm Action Group (Swag) Ltd, which has opposed the project for more than five years, has been given a date of July 2008 for a judicial review at the Court of Session in Edinburgh and has said it will seek an interim interdict should the developer begin construction work in the meantime. The Edinbane application was approved in March at a Portree hearing attended by fewer than half of the members of Highland Council's planning committee. Planning director John Rennilson has previously insisted the council would not have given its consent without "following procedure".
Controversial plans for a wind farm in Nottinghamshire are back on after previously being rejected by planners. UK Coal wants to build turbines on an area between Bilsthorpe and Eakring near Newark to generate green energy. But after a number of protests, planners rejected original plans for seven turbines in November 2006. The energy company now wants to install five shorter turbines but villagers say they will be an eyesore and intend to fight the plans again.
YORKSHIRE will meet targets on renewable energy only if every wind power scheme which is currently proposed is built, a report says. Research by Yorkshire Futures, which is responsible for compiling intelligence on the region, says that 13 square miles of countryside would have to be given over to wind farms to satisfy requirements. The Yorkshire and Humber regional assembly set its own target for ten per cent of its energy to be provided by renewable means by 2010. Four wind farms currently operate in Yorkshire, including one at Chelker Reservoir, near Skipton, and one is under construction at Knabs Ridge, near Harrogate. The Yorkshire Futures report says 26 would be needed over the next three years, with a total of 218 turbines.
Swathes of Yorkshire about the size of Leeds and Bradford combined will have to be carpeted over with wind farms if the region is to meet strict renewable energy targets, the Yorkshire Post can reveal. About 34sq km (13sq miles) of Yorkshire's rolling countryside will need to be given up to the giant turbines in order to meet the region's target of producing 10 per cent of its energy by renewable means by 2010. At present there are only four wind farms operating in Yorkshire, and only one has been built since 1993 - the seven-turbine scheme at Out Newton, near Hull. With great public opposition to every wind farm application, few get past the planning permission stage. But all that will have to change if the region is to meet its targets, according to a new report by Yorkshire Futures.
Campaigners are celebrating victory in their battle against controversial plans for a windfarm near Pontefract. Twelve members of Wakefield Council's planning board yesterday unanimously rejected Banks Development's application to erect a 60m wind monitoring mast for up to three years on land off Westfield Lane at Darrington. They voted against council officers' recommendation to approve the test mast on the grounds that it would be an ‘inappropriate development in green belt.' More than 760 people had objected to the temporary mast which the developers said is needed to determine the type of turbines needed to generate maximum electricity from six planned masts at the site.
The fight against wind turbine proposals has been accelerating since November 2005 when details of a planning proposal by a wind power development company were made public. The Save Our Unspoilt Landscape (SOUL) action group is in complete agreement; they are all for changes for the good. But when those changes mean their workplaces and recreation areas are threatened by being covered in 110-metre wind turbines, it's time, they say, to take a stand against "progress". "It's poor value if it comes at the expense to people's lives," says Andrew Joicey, the Northumberland farmer who admits that the issue of windfarms "is in danger of taking over my life".
The ballot response rate was high for a local matter and demonstrates the level to which residents feel they would be affected by the proposal. That over 62 per cent of the returns gave a thumbs-down to the wind farm finally gives a true picture of local opinion, despite a well-timed campaign to highlight the potential financial spin-offs by supporters of the development.
Ann and Hedley Lamb have spent what seems to be a lifetime developing Barmoor Country Park near Lowick in Northumberland. Now with 100 caravan pitches, it is one of 22 such parks in Berwick borough alone, welcoming thousands of visitors virtually year-round. Bizarrely, strict planning guidelines insist that caravans should be screened from view but a clutch of proposed wind turbines barely a mile up the hill over Barmoor will be highly visible for dozens of miles around - with no such restrictions. "We've planted 8,000 trees to screen the caravans," says Ann. "It's for the planning rules, but it's also good for the wildlife and good for the local environment. I daren't even think about how this will affect our business. The landscape with its historic value is the essence of the place; you're going to kill the golden goose. We need a little bit of common sense.
The simple plaque reads: "Flodden 1513. To the brave of both nations". It sits on a plinth beside a stone cross on the hill above Branxton, barely three miles south of the Scottish border. If local wind farm proposals get the green light, two areas of development will be clearly visible from there - Barmoor, some five miles to the east, and Toft Hill towards the north. To romantics, it's a disturbing thought.
Visitors spend horseback holidays roaming the high moor around Ford Moss Nature Reserve and neighbouring grassland then take beach rides on Holy Island Sands. Many return on a regular basis, like the group of ladies from Cambridgeshire who made a pact several years ago to book the same few days every year. It is part of Ford and Etal Estates and is a good example of a rural diversification enterprise. Dickie Jeffreys, who runs the riding centre with his wife Jane, says: "This is beautiful countryside, totally unspoilt - and it's what our business relies on. The wildlife here is so vivid and real. Can you imagine 360-foot high turbines here? It's an absolute scandal." Ford Moss is a nature reserve where, quite apart from the wildlife, the trees sink into the bog the bigger they get. It's millions of years old - some of the moss found there is unique to the area. Nearby is Routin Lynn, an ancient British settlement with a waterfall said to have magical powers. It is in the care of English Heritage. Mr Jeffreys adds: "It's a very, very special place and it'll be surrounded by inefficient turbines. And, the horses will be terrified - a wind turbine is not a noise they understand, they hate hissing sounds."
Plans for a windfarm on the outskirts of Linton have been met with opposition from countryside campaigners. Independent energy company Enertrag UK Ltd is exploring the possibility of putting eight turbines, up to 125 metres high, on land off the A1307 Cambridge Road. The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) claims some of the most beautiful countryside in South Cambridgeshire and North Essex will be destroyed if the scheme goes ahead. And residents have got together to set up an action group.
Anti-wind-farm group ThWART has promised it will fight Your Energy's plan to build a scaled-down wind farm at Wellow. The energy company, which earlier in the year announced it was not lodging an appeal against council refusal of a six-turbine farm on fields at Wellow, confirmed this week it was still considering a smaller-scale scheme, for three or possibly four 100-metre-plus turbines.
Members from SWATT (South Wales Alternative To Turbines) joined more than 100 people from anti-wind turbine action groups for a protest rally at Cefn Coch. The group was protesting at plans to build a 22-turbine windfarm between Carno and Cefn Coch. A spokesman for SWATT was delighted with the turnout for the protest. He said: "The North-South divide, much talked about in the run-up to the Welsh Assembly elections, was not in evidence. Welshmen, women and children, came from the hills, the vales, villages, towns and cities from across the principality. "They were joined by action groups from Devon and Sutherland in Scotland."
Proposals for a community wind farm on the hills above Selkirk will not go ahead unless locals agree, the head of the local regeneration group has said. The pledge was made by Dr Lindsay Neil, chairman of the Selkirk Regeneration Group. The group has passed a report on the idea of building turbines on common land to the community council. But the site is controversial because it is close to the Common Riding route and the Southern Upland Way.
Community leaders in North Harris are furious that a plan for three wind turbines that would earn £150,000 a year for local investment is to be delayed by a public inquiry. The inquiry could recommend ministers refuse permission for the 2.5-megawatt development, despite having been approved by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar (Western Isles Council). Crucially, it is opposed by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) because the turbines would be on part of a national scenic area.