May 29, 2008

Action group gears up for wind turbine fight

An action group is urging people to back their campaign to stop wind turbines the height of the London Eye being built in their village.

Developer Wind Power Renewables wants to build two 126-metre turbines at Potash Farm, Wyverstone, although a planning application is yet to be submitted.

But residents calling themselves the Stop Wyverstone Wind Farm Action Group (SWWAG) are so worried about the plan, they are encouraging others to get on board.

On Tuesday, villagers packed into Wyverstone Village Hall to hear SWWAG’s concerns.

Neil Macey, chairman of SWWAG, who lives in Potash Lane, said: “Most of us have chosen to live here because we like the way it looks and it’s peaceful. These turbines will be barely 500 metres from the nearest houses and 50 metres from bridlepaths.

“We should all be concerned for the future of this village. If we stand any chance, we must fight this because any subsequent ones will be near on impossible to fight, as a precedent will have been set.”

Andrew Coxhead, an engineer who lives in The Street, said 50 per cent of houses within a 3km radius of the site would have a view of the turbines.

“They are almost as big as the London Eye and are going on a greenfield site. It will impact on everyone living in this area,” he added.

Simon Williams, whose house would be just 500 metres from the turbines, said he was not against wind generation, but this was in the wrong place.

He said: “We don’t live in a high windspeed area. The reason they are doing this is down to subsidies. Money is the key driver here not renewable energy.”

Other concerns raised include the impact on health, wildlife and property prices.

More than 500 people have already signed up to SWWAG, while others have written letters of objection to Mid Suffolk District Council.

Andy Hilton, managing director of Wind Power Renewables, said he would not have put a wind monitoring mast on the site if he did not think it was suitable.

The company hopes to submit a planning application by August.

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By Karen Wilson

Bury Free Press

23 May 2008

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