People in Witheridge have formed a campaign group to voice their concern at plans for a wind farm development on the outskirts of the village.
Concerned residents objected to Nuon Renewable’s plans to erect four 100-metre turbines at nearby Pilliven Farm, at a well-attended meeting held at Witheridge Parish Hall.
Campaign spokesperson Jessie Morton, said news of the development – to be named Franklyn Wind Farm – became a reality when four large microphones were placed on nearby properties as part of an environmental assessment.
Mrs Morton, owner of adjoining Foxdon Farm, said she and husband David had been approached by a power company to build on their land but, along with other local landowners, had resisted the monetary incentives being offered.
“We are devastated about what this could mean,” she said. “We live in a particularly quiet, rural environment and consider this possible industrial development as misplaced and intrusive. Although we may all want green energy, these monsters are not what they might seem.”
Speaking at the meeting, Bob Barfoot, chairman of the Campaign to Protect Rural England, presented a photomontage of the visual effect of turbines in North Devon.
The group has started a campaign website:www.savenorthdevon.com/Pilleven.html
Although a planning application is still to be submitted, Witheridge parish councillors plan to arrange a pre-consultation meeting with Nuon Renewables. Parish Clerk Pete Dunn told the Gazette it was hoped a private meeting could be held mid-February. “It was felt that if a meeting was held in public, it could be hijacked by opponents and that councillors’ ability to give the developer a fair hearing would be compromised,” he said in the council minutes.
23 January 2008
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