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Approval likely for giant wind turbine in Northampton  

Proposals for a massive 417ft wind turbine in Northampton are likely to be approved by planners, despite objections from residents.

The turbine, which would generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of 1,250 homes and prevent the release of more than 5,000 tonnes of CO2, would be built in the car park of the Asda distribution centre in Brackmills.

A report from the West Northamptonshire Development Corporation’s planning office, to be discussed at a meeting of the WNDC next week, suggests the application should be approved despite some visual impact on the landscape.

It said: “The proposed development would result in the local generation of electricity from a clean, renewable energy source.

“While the proposal would have some visual impacts on the wider landscape these impacts are not considered to be sufficient to outweigh the overall benefit to the environment and national interest … that results from the generation of energy from renewable energy sources.

“The application has satisfactorily demonstrated how subject to conditions the development would not cause any undue harm to residents in terms of noise, shadow flicker or TV interference.

“The proposed development is also considered to have an acceptable impact upon ecological interests.”

People who live close to the supermarket distribution centre have raised concerns about the height of the turbine, which would stand at the same height as the Express Lift Tower.

A formal objection by neighbouring Great Houghton Parish Council said: “The proposed turbine would have an adverse impact on the skyline between Great Houghton and Hardingstone and would be hugely detrimental to the visual amenity of the locality.

“The wind turbine would become a blot on the landscape.

“There will only be benefits to the applicant from this proposal and no benefits to the local area; Great Houghton will suffer as a result of the turbine.”

The WNDC report recommends that Asda Stores Ltd must agree to provide “contributions for the promotion, installation and education of renewable energy or energy saving measures for the local community” and “contributions for the improvement of biodiversity in the Brackmills area” for the turbine plan to be approved.

Planners will discuss the application at a meeting of the WNDC on Tuesday, June 3.

Northampton Chronicle and Echo

27 May 2008

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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