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£300m movie studio gone with the wind?  

Proposals to build a wind farm near to the A19 could scupper plans for Seaham’s £300million film studio.

SLP Energy has submitted an application to Easington Council to build three turbines on land between Murton and Hawthorn.

It says the farm would potentially provide 4,190 homes with clean green electricity, and a two-year study has found there would be no adverse affects on the environment.

But Seaham Town Council has lodged a formal objection to the plans, saying if the development was built it may jeopardise or even result in the abandonment of the film studio scheme in Dawdon.

A letter from the town council to Easington Council states: “In our discussions, several members of Seaham Town Council drew attention to the public consultation meetings which were arranged by the developers of the Centre of Excellence and Film Studio scheme.

“The consultants representing the Centre of Excellence scheme made it very clear in answer to a specific question that if there were any wind turbines constructed in the near local/vicinity of their development, then this was likely to jeopardise their scheme and might, in fact, result in them abandoning the whole project.

“It is the town council’s view that the building of the three-turbine wind farm on the site proposed is likely to fall within a relatively close vicinity to the proposed Centre of Excellence.

“The town council, therefore, feel it is vital at this stage to highlight this important fact and if, as we believe, the possible construction of the wind turbines might jeopardise or even result in the Centre of Excellence scheme being abandoned, then we feel there is no other option but to register the strongest objection to the proposals of SLP Energy.”

Plans for the country’s biggest film studio complex at Dawdon were given the go-ahead in May, promising more than 2,400 jobs and £300million-worth of investment into East Durham.

The Centre for Creative Excellence will be built on 180 acres off the A182 and is the biggest planning application the district has ever seen.

Ronnie Ramshaw, mayor of Seaham, said: “The film studio gave us a list of what was required to build there. One of the statements said they needed an area where it was quiet. They even took three years to monitor flight paths from Newcastle Airport. We have the belief that a wind farm will have a noise effect.”

The application will go before the council’s development control committee on July 22.

Sunderland Echo

17 June 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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