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Giant turbines get even bigger

A controversial plan to build England’s largest wind farm in East Yorkshire has been scrapped.

The plans for the wind farm at Rotsea, near Hutton Cranswick, have changed from having 43 wind turbines to 10.

However, the turbines would be significantly higher than those in the original plans and campaigners have vowed to continue the fight against them.

The decision to reduce the number of turbines was taken by developer Renewable Energy Systems (RES) after consultation with residents.

But the turbines would be 25m (82ft) larger than previously planned.

The 125m (410ft) structures would dwarf nearby Driffield’s landmarks, including Somerset Tower at All Saints Church, which stands at 33.5m (110ft) and the converted flour mill at Riverhead, which is 17m (56ft) tall. RES today announced it would apply for planning permission for the wind farm early next year.

The company has already been given planning permission for an 80m (262ft) wind measuring mast at the site.

The mast contains devices to measure wind speed and direction.

Project manager Nick Bristow said: “We are looking at a significantly smaller project of 10 turbines.”

Mr Bristow welcomed the decision by East Riding Council this week to approve the wind measuring mast.

He said: “It is only a temporary device to assess the suitability of the site.

“We need to know how hard the wind blows to judge if the site is economically viable.

“The mast will help plan the wind farm.

“We need to do background noise measurements near the site.

“To do this, we need to know the wind speed and direction at the time.”

But people living nearby are still opposed to the plans.

Martin Bailey, 54, of Main Street in Skerne, is a member of Wolds Wind Farm Opposition.

East Riding Council recorded 197 letters of objection to the wind measuring mast, but Mr Bailey said he had seen 264 objections.

He said: “Hundreds of people wrote in to voice concerns about the mast.

“The fact RES has reduced the farm has not reduced the level of objection.

“If you look at other areas of the country, there are examples where a single-figure number of turbines was proposed but then there were further applications wind farms nearby.”

The wind farm would be capable of continually powering about 10,000 homes.

The turbines on the previously planned site could have powered about 28,000 homes.

But campaigners opposed to the development say, because of fluctuations in the wind, turbines rarely operate at full strength.

The proposed wind farm at Rotsea is just one of number across the region.

Plans for a 10-turbine wind farm at Routh, near Beverley, have been submitted to East Riding Council by developer Ridgewind.