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Families fight windfarm plan  

More than 200 people gathered to protest against plans to build a windfarm with up to 17 wind turbines and a biomass factory at a former airfield.

Developers want to turn Chelveston Airfield and its redundant Ministry of Defence buildings into a major new renewable energy plant, but action group Preserve wants to protect the greenfield site.

They claim the turbines could be as tall as St Paul’s Cathedral, standing at 364ft.
On Sunday they met at the airfield to walk along its four miles of public footpaths which were re-opened last week thanks to years of pressure by the Ramblers Association.

Chris Pentland, 44, of Caldecott, said: “The footpaths have been opened for the first time in 60 years.

“The developers didn’t want them opened but they had to because of highways law. We are not happy about the industrial-style fences they have put up around them.”

Chelveston Renewable Energy has lodged a planning application for the renewable energy scheme with East Northamptonshire Council.

Nearly 1,200 people have objected to the plans by signing an on-line petition against the windfarm planned for a site near the A6.

Part of the former RAF site was sold to Chelveston Renewable Energy at the end of last year.

If the scheme goes ahead it will have between 14 and 17 turbines.

Protesters claim the proposed development would have the biggest land-based wind turbines in the country, bringing more traffic to the area.

Preserve chairman Pieter Mommersteeg said: “The turbines proposed will be the biggest inland turbines anywhere in the UK and will dwarf the surrounding ancient villages, towering over historical monuments, churches and houses.

“Meanwhile, the biomass plant recycles animal, human and crop waste and, according to the developers, will be ‘fed’ by approximately 40 giant HGV lorries per day, seven days a week.

“These lorries will be thundering through the local villages on narrow lanes and roads that are frequented by children, cyclists, horse riders and walkers, along with local village traffic, and are not designed for the tens of thousands of lorry journeys per year.”

He said: “We want to stress we are not against environmental protection but we believe this is more about making money for the developers, especially as they are being built in areas of proven low wind speed.”


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