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I’ll fight to stop turbine growth

The new county councillor for Aspatria and Wharrels has pledged to fight any more wind turbine developments in Cumbria.

Conservative Mike Johnson, 38, was elected this month in a by-election called following the death of former council leader Jim Buchanan in April.

Mr Johnson said: “I am against further development of onshore windfarms – many are already blighting our lovely countryside.

“I think Cumbria, and our area in particular, has more than enough turbines.

“I recognise the need for renewable energy and we must identify and invest in the best and most economical resources available such as hydro and tidal power, along with [offshore] wind power.”

He added: “I fully support the nuclear industry. The jobs that a new [nuclear] power station will create and protect are vital for our community.”

Mr Johnson, who grew up in Cockermouth, is an operations manager with Amey – the company that maintains Cumbria’s roads for the county council. He lives at Crosby, near Maryport, with his wife and their 15-year-old son.

He joined the Conservative Party only this year but says he has long been a supporter. He served as a parish councillor in Camerton in the 1990s.

Mr Johnson said: “Politics is something I feel passionate about. I want to make a difference.

“I didn’t expect to be able to stand for the council so soon but the opportunity came following Jim’s sad death.

“I knew Jim and worked with him. I will work to continue the excellent work he did.”

Mr Johnson was elected with a comfortable majority of 481. He polled 823 votes in the by-election on September 9. His only challenger, Helen Graham of the Greens, polled 342.