A controversial block on the expansion of two wind farms in Denbighshire is to be re-considered.
Planning councillors took the shock decision last month to turn down two applications to build another 29 wind turbines in the Nantglyn area – going against both the advice of their own planning experts and the recommendations of Parliament
Now the county’s planning officers fear the decision could be challenged – which means the authority could end up paying costs if the proposals were called in to a planning appeal.
They have asked for the applications to now be debated by the full Denbighshire county council on Tuesday, February 26. At the meeting councillors will be asked to reconsider approving the wind farms.
A council spokesman said last night: “Members of Denbighshire County Council will be recommended to approve two planning applications for wind farms in the Nantglyn area that were originally refused permission by members last month.
“Council officers can refer a matter to the full council if a previous decision is likely to result in a successful award of costs against the council at appeal.
“Officers have taken this step in respect of the two applications, based on professional advice.”
The plans included an application from Brenig Wind Limited on land east of Llyn Brenig at Nantglyn. In involves building a wind farm of 16 wind turbines with a maximum tip height not exceeding 100m, along with transformers, access tracks, and other ancillary buildings.
The other application is from Tegni Cymru Cyf on land at Gorsedd Bran, Nantglyn involving the construction of 13 wind turbine generators (up to 125m in overall height), electrical control room and compound area, new and improved access tracks, underground cabling, 80m mast, ancillary works and equipment.
Both applications were refused by the planning committee on the grounds of noise, flooding and landscaping.
But the officers’ report to the full council in Ruthin on February 26, says: “Having regard to the decision at planning committee, officers have considered whether there are grounds on which the council could reasonably consider refusing planning permission.
“Thorough consideration has been given to the debate at planning committee and all the material planning considerations.
“The conclusion is that officers can identify no satisfactory grounds for either of these applications to be refused.
“Officers are of the opinion that there is a significant risk of costs being awarded against the Council should a refusal on any of the grounds identified by planning committee be pursued.”
By Carl Butler
23 February 2008
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