Controversial plans for a wind farm near Aberford have been scaled down following fierce opposition by residents.
Banks Developments revealed proposals in July last year for as many as eight propeller-style turbines on green belt land at Hook Moor, overlooking the village and nearby Micklefield.
News of the project drew a furious reaction from families in the area, particularly those living in Micklefield, who said the site was too close to their homes.
But this week Banks unveiled a revised version of the scheme which it hopes will prove more acceptable.
The Durham-based firm has shifted the proposed location of the wind farm 500 metres further away from Micklefield village.
It also says the scheme will now involve no more than five turbines.
Their likely height, however, remains unchanged at 125 metres.
Banks Developments is expected to submit a planning application for the revised wind farm by the end of this month.
The company’s renewable projects director, Rob Williams, said feedback from people had helped reshape the proposals.
He added: “Where the energy that we use comes from and how it is generated is one of the most important issues facing everyone in the 21st century.
“We believe the Hook Moor scheme could make a very positive local contribution to meeting this challenge.”
But The Hook Moor Wind Farm Action Group, which spearheaded the campaign against the original plans, was unimpressed by Banks’ announcement.
Group spokeswoman Carolyn Walker said this week: “Our stance hasn’t altered. We are still opposed to this project.”
Banks says the scheme will generate enough energy for more than 8,000 homes without the production of environmentally-damaging greenhouse gases.
The company is currently waiting to see if it has succeeded in its appeal against Leeds City Council’s rejection of its plans for a 60-metre initial “monitoring mast.”
Data from the mast would be used to fine-tune the main wind farm proposals.
The rejigged plans will be on show at the Old Fire Station, on Great North Road in Micklefield, from 3pm to 7pm on Wednesday, February 20.
15 February 2008
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