As a resident living in a property overlooking the site of the proposed wind turbines off Greenhead Lane, Fence, and as secretary of SHAFT (Stop Higham and Fence Turbines), I was delighted to receive the news from British Telecom that the proposal is not to proceed.
There are numerous questions and detailed available information regarding the viability of turbines as a suitable form of renewable energy but the fact remains no commercial enterprise would proceed with such turbines without the knowledge of the significant incentives available from Government.
The question as to whether this particular site was suitable has never been in doubt in my mind.
Factors such as damage to the greenbelt landscape and resident wildlife, unsuitable ground conditions, unsuitable access roadways, issues relating to our heritage and the proximity of listed buildings are all important.
However, of over-riding importance was the projected harmful effects on the wellbeing and health of those living in proximity to the proposed site.
The initial application almost “sneaked through” on a Pendle Council officer’s recommendation for acceptance. However, those of us that had been alerted to the application managed to have it referred to the Development Control Committee and set about alerting as many residents as possible to what was actually happening.
The attendance at the said meeting was wonderful and heartwarming. There was a tremendous “village feel” as one after another voiced their concerns to the committee, to who we are grateful for their understanding and the consideration they gave to the points made.
The result was a unanimous refusal of the application. However, it subsequently became clear BT would not go away and those same villagers rallied themselves to object to an anticipated substantive application for the turbine development.
The strength of our argument was never in doubt and the response was wonderful to behold. Great thanks for the success is due to our local councillors (especially Coun. John David), to our MP who supported us throughout (Mr Andrew Stephenson), to our bold and courageous chairman, Arthur Stuttard, and all the committee members of SHAFT, but mostly to the ordinary residents of the villages who made their feelings known.
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding