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Wind firm wants an inquiry into windfarm appeals  

An energy firm is asking the Government to hold a joint inquiry to consider appeals into the rejection of plans for two windfarms in West Cumbria.

Broadview Energy Developments Ltd on Monday appealed to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government into Allerdale Borough Council’s non-determination of its plan for five wind turbines at Warwick Hall Farm, Westnewton.

The planning application was submitted on September 8 and, under the Town and Country Planning Act, it should have been determined by December 27.

It wants a joint inquiry held into plans for that development, and for a plan by Nuon renewables for five turbines at Brownrigg Hall Farm, near Allonby.

Broadview’s managing director Jeffrey Corrigan said: “Broadview had not been concerned with the delay in determination as it normally takes much longer than the 16 week period allowed to determine wind farm applications. More importantly, it hoped that the Brownrigg Hall appeal would be concluded prior to the Warwick Hall application going before the council’s planning committee.”

He said that while Broadview believed that there is capacity for both projects, it recognised that the uncertainty created by the ongoing Brownrigg Hall appeal added complexity to the decision faced by Allerdale on the Warwick Hall scheme.

He added: “It now appears that the Brownrigg Hall appeal will not be concluded for several months, partly as a result for the requirement for a public inquiry rather than written statements.

“While Broadview would have preferred its application to be determined by Allerdale Borough Council, it believes that it is now in the best interests of all parties to have both projects considered jointly, at a public inquiry.

“This will provide a more efficient process and, ultimately, a better decision.”

The proposed Brownrigg Hall project was refused council planning permission after a huge local protest last April, and developers Nuon Renewables lodged a notice of appeal in October.

Times & Star

21 February 2008

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