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Blimp protest over turbines  

Anti-wind farm protesters in Northumberland yesterday flew blimps at three proposed development locations to coincide with a planners’ site visit.

Save our Unspoilt Landscape (Soul) and the Moorsyde Action Group (Mag) flew balloons at Barmoor, Toft Hill and Moorsyde, all in close proximity in Berwick borough, where three separate wind farms are proposed to be built.

The blimps were flown at the exact height as the proposed turbines as Berwick Borough Council’s development control committee undertook site visits at all three locations before members determine the applications together early in the New Year. Soul member Amanda Worlock, who lives at Western House, Lowick near the Barmoor site, said: “We have managed to get flying permission from the Civil Aviation Authority to have the three blimps flying simultaneously so you can get a broad view as you are driving along of three blimps flying at the height the turbines will be.

“We are hoping it will give them (the councillors) an idea of cumulative impact.” Soul says the balloons, all orange and bearing the slogan No to Turbines, are visible from the likes of Cheviot, Berwick, Kyloe and Wooler. One was borrowed from campaigners fighting npower renewables’ plans to erect 18 125 metre turbines at nearby Middlemoor in Alnwick district, which was recently the subject of a public inquiry. The blimps will be in the sky again on Saturday as protesters aim to display them to the largest audience possible.

Soul was set up to oppose Force 9’s plans to erect six 110.5-metre turbines at Barmoor while Mag is contesting Your Energy’s application to put seven 110 metre turbines at Moorsyde. npower renewables is also seeking to site seven 112 metre turbines at Toft Hill.

The borough council is planning to decide all three applications together at the same meeting early in the New Year.

The Journal

12 December 2007

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