Windfarm plans for a Northumberland moor have been thrust back into the public eye – with protesters gaining an unexpected second chance to oppose the region’s biggest green power bid.
Npower renewables has just issued public notices over its plans for 18 turbines at Middlemoor, north of Alnwick near North Charlton.
It extends the deadline for any submissions or comments on the proposed scheme until November 9, following new information being submitted by the company about the project.
That involves the recent completion of archaeological digs on the site, which have now been submitted as further evidence to the Department for Trade and Industry, which will determine the application.
Documents have also been lodged at Alnwick District Council’s offices, Alnwick Library and Northumberland County Hall for public viewing.
Clare Wilson, regional development manager for Npower renewables, said: “We have re-advertised the application after submitting further information about the project.
“This follows archaeological trial trenching we were asked to carry out on the site.
“This is standard practice for the Environmental Impact Assessment process.
“However it means that the consultation window reopens and it offers those who wish to make a comment about the wind farm the opportunity to do so.”
Npower says the wind farm at Middlemoor would be capable of meeting the average annual electricity needs of more than 27,000 homes – enough to power every home in both Alnwick and Berwick with clean, pollution-free electricity. Each turbine would stand five times higher than the Angel of the North.
But both the local authority and people living in the area have already voiced strong objections to the plan, saying it will have a massive impact on its beautiful surroundings.
A public meeting held at the Northumberland Hall in February witnessed an overwhelming show of hands urging Alnwick District Council to object to the proposals.
Dominic Coupe, whose family farms near Middlemoor and who is a strident campaigner against wind turbines, said the re-opening of consultations would allow people time to make further representations.
“I only hope locals will take the opportunity to view the documentation and contact the DTI with any further views they may have on this application,” he said. “It’s vitally important for local people to have their say on what is a major application which will have significant consequences for our landscape.”
By Robert Brooks, The Journal
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