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Windfarm plans policy must change say Cumbrian campaigners  

Credit:  By Julian Whittle, The Cumberland News, www.cumberlandnews.co.uk 30 September 2010 ~~

Anti-windfarm campaigners are hoping for a change in government policy towards wind turbines following the defeat of a controversial scheme for Cumwhinton, near Carlisle.

Planning inspector Paul Griffiths threw out proposals in March for three turbines up to 377ft high at Newlands Farm, near junction 42 of the M6.

He said the windfarm would have a “significant detrimental impact” on nearby Cringles Farm and Beech Cottage.

Cringles Farm would have been only 420 metres from the nearest turbine.

Since the public inquiry into the Cumwhinton scheme last year, 783 people have signed a petition on the Prime Minister’s website – number10.gov.uk – calling for England to fall into line with Scotland where turbines are not allowed within two kilometres of a habitation.

This would have ruled out the Cumwhinton proposal from the start.

David Cameron’s office has responded, promising to: “Reform the planning system to give neighbourhoods far more ability to determine the shape of the places in which their inhabitants live.”

However, the official statement stops short of pledging a two-kilometre ‘exclusion zone’ as in Scotland.

Allison Stamper, who lives at Cringles Farm with her husband Colin, was one of the signatories.

She said: “The response is slightly encouraging but nothing has changed yet. They have to start taking notice of local residents on these things.”

Nicola Clarke, a Conservative city councillor for Dalston, also signed the on-line petition.

She said: “The [present] approach of looking at windfarms on a case-by-case basis is dangerous. The process does need to be reviewed. It needs tightening up. Decisions should be devolved to local communities.”

Another signatory was Ron Williams who lives 800 metres from a windfarm at Bothel.

He showed a video to the Cumwhinton inquiry to demonstrate the flicker effect of sunlight through the blades and he described the “relentless and repetitive” swish-swish noise of the turbines as “mental torture”.

Source:  By Julian Whittle, The Cumberland News, www.cumberlandnews.co.uk 30 September 2010

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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