A council has conceded defeat in its battle against a large wind farm in Essex – after being advised there would be insufficient grounds for an appeal to the High Court.
Energy giant Npower’s plan for 10 turbines close to Bradwell-on-Sea had been rejected by Maldon District Council in a bid to protect the “peace and tranquillity” of the surrounding area.
But the company took the case to a public inquiry and it was announced last month its appeal had been successful.
More than 10,000 homes will be able to receive electricity from the on-shore development at Hockley Farm.
The council argued the turbines – standing at 121 metres on farmland to the south of Bradwell – would change the historic landscape and character of the area for years to come.
But its hopes of a challenge to the Planning Inspectorate’s decision have now been shattered after a barrister advised a High Court appeal was likely to fail.
Frank Delderfield , chairman of the planning and licensing committee at the council, said: “This is the end of the road for any challenge to the wind farm application from Maldon District Council.
“We are of course disappointed that, on the advice that we have received, there are insufficient grounds on which to challenge the decision by the Planning Inspectorate.
“The cost to the council tax payer of challenging and then losing a High Court case is not an issue that we can overlook.”
The council stands by its original objection, claiming it is not opposed to renewable energy but simply that the wind farm was in the wrong location.
Last month Cath Stevenson, development manager at Npower Renewables, said: “There is an urgent need to tackle the causes of climate change and wind farms are the most commercially and technologically advanced renewable to meet the challenge.
“The wind farm at Bradwell will power on average between 8,100 and 10,600 local homes, helping reduce the amount of carbon dioxide we produce.”
11 October 2007
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