A bakery’s plan to erect a 67-metre high wind turbine next to its Severn Beach warehouse has received a swell of opposition from villagers.
Warburtons is hoping to receive permission to build a turbine on its site at the Western Approach Distribution Park and its planning application will be reviewed at a meeting of South Gloucestershire Council’s development west committee on Thursday.
Although the proposal has been recommended for approval by the local authority’s officers, who found the plans would not have a significant impact on local amenities, villagers and the parish council said the 67-metre pylon would stick out like a “sore-thumb”.
Pilning and Severn Beach Council chairman Ian Roberts said: “It’s disgusting. The parish council is not against wind farms in general but against the impact it will have on residents. It is the noise and the visual impact we are worried about. It’s huge. People are worried about it.”
A total of 14 villagers sent letters of objection to the district council listing noise, visual impact, shadow flicker and proximity to neighbouring homes as their main concerns with the development.
However, in their comments, council officers disagreed with these objections stating the turbine would be located “in the least visual area of the site, with roadside vegetation along Western Approach Road, helping to soften views from the road”.
They also pointed out that as the structure would also help further the government’s renewable energy targets as it would generate 18 per cent of Warburtons’ annual electricity consumption.
The turbine’s proposed location on the site was questioned by villagers and their councillors, who did not believe Warburtons had chosen to place it in the least visible part of the site.
Cllr Roberts added: “They’ve got quite a big site. Why does it have to be in the front? It’s not the least visible. It’s just easier for them.”
His colleague, South Gloucestershire Councillor for Pilning and Severn Beach Robert Griffin, said: “I have knocked on the door of every home nearest to the proposed turbine site and the overwhelming majority of residents expressed their concerns about the application, particularly the visual impact and the economics that sit behind wind energy.”
No one at Warburtons was available for comment.