Energy bosses have been given the all clear to start testing for wind power near a postcard village in Doncaster’s countryside.
Doncaster Council’s planning committee voted by a six to five majority to back NPower Renewables’ request to set up testing equipment in a field near Hampole Grange.
They rejected pleas from Hampole and Skelbrooke Parish Meeting that the scheme should be blocked, after the community based organisation had voted to fight the scheme.
Campaigners told councillors they believed the scheme could endanger motorists and bats, but officers looked into the claims and said Natural England raised no concerns.
Residents are also unhappy about the choice of a green belt site for possible wind turbines.
But the committee’s decision means the electricity firm can now set up equipment to investigate the strength of the wind in near the
village on a site near Hampole Grange, around 600 yards from the A1(M).
If the findings reveal the site is suitable, NPower may look at the site for a possible windfarm.
Catherine Spencer, clerk to the Hampole and Skelbrooke parish meeting, said: ‘In our view it will present a distraction to drivers when people are filtering off for the junction. There will be a 197ft high mast with guy ropes. We think it is going to put drivers at risk.
“English Nature has told us that there are bats that feed along the dismantled railway nearby. We have a duty to protect them and there will be sites that are irrevocably spoiled. The wind farm plan at Marr is enough.”
Hampole resident Janice Rose added: “We oppose this because it would be inappropriate use of green belt land.
“This is just 600 yards from Hampole Wood, where the trees are descendants of those of the medieval Barndale Forest.”
By David Kessen
1 September 2007
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