Plans for an 80m wind turbine in the grounds of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn were thrown out by councillors this morning.
Health chiefs devised the scheme with renewable energy company Ecotricity as the hospital attempts to become the first public sector organisation in the country to generate its own green energy.
But an objection was received from the MoD which claimed the turbine would cause “unacceptable interference” to the air traffic control radar at nearby RAF Marham.
West Norfolk Council’s Development Control Board was told that the Defence Estates’ claims, along with concerns from the operators of the Hospital Air Ambulance about flight safety, were viewed as fundamental objections to the plan.
Councillors voted against the development and added further reasons for refusal including the possible impact on road safety, wildlife and the surrounding neighbourhood – even though no objections were received from highways or environmental officers.
A spokesman for Ecotricity said the company was in direct contact with both of the major objectors and asked for the decision to be deferred to give them time to resolve the issues.
But a motion to postpone the decision was defeated by a single-vote margin.
Cllr William Daws said: “It seems to me there has not been enough discussion before coming to planning.
“It could be months before the MoD decide to respond. We are talking about something that is 200ft high with helicopters buzzing around it. I don’t think that is safe.
“There is enough information in the report to refuse it.”
28 April 2008
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