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Villagers have fresh battle on wind farm  

Credit:  Leek Post & Times, www.thisisleek.co.uk 7 January 2011 ~~

Villagers e Abbots Bromley and Marchington Woodlands Wind Farm Action Group are opposing a £30 million scheme to put up eight 110-metre turbines at Bagot’s Park.

SSE Renewables, formerly Airtricity, is the latest firm to seek permission from East Staffordshire Borough Council after a decade of resubmitted applications.

The Reading-based company is waiting to find out whether it can start work.

The plans have sparked protests from residents who fought off a similar scheme by renewable energy firm ABEnergy four years ago.

The action group is hoping that its voice has been heard and plans for the are turned down.

Mark Newstead, who formed the group in 2000, said: “Every application for a wind farm has been passed on from one company to another, and each time we have made sure our opinions are taken into consideration.

“Many of us have sent letters to the council and we have hosted several campaigns to express our opposed views about the wind farms.”

However, East Staffordshire Alliance for Cleaner Energy, which was set up to support the wind farm, believes residents should back the eco-project.

Member Mike King, of Abbots Bromley, thinks residents are not looking at the bigger picture.

He said: “I appreciate that people who live close to the wind farm will be affected and I understand their concerns, but we will have to accept different resources of energy sooner rather than later because the costs of sourcing and using traditional fossil fuels is becoming increasingly expensive.”

SSE Renewables claims the park could supply power to 10,000 homes, a quarter of East Staffordshire households.

It states that the wind farm could generate £3 million for the local economy and 25 jobs during the construction process.

Bagot’s Park is an open area of agricultural land.

Source:  Leek Post & Times, www.thisisleek.co.uk 7 January 2011

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