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Wind farm blown out over fears of impact on surrounding landscape  

Credit:  Scunthorpe Telegraph, www.thisisscunthorpe.co.uk 5 March 2011 ~~

Councillors threw out plans for a wind farm over fears of the impact it would have on the surrounding landscape, a meeting next week is expected to reveal.

North Lincolnshire Council’s planning committee voted last month to deny permission for the six-turbine Grange Wind Farm facility at Flixborough Grange over the potential impact on landscape.

Applications from developer RidgeWind to build turbines on the site had already been rejected twice by the council.

One of these plans was also turned down by a Government planning inspector after a public inquiry.

A decision on the exact wording of the reasons for refusing the latest application was deferred at the planning committee meeting.

Now officers at the council have drafted a version of the reasons for refusal, which the planning committee is expected to formally adopt at its next meeting, on Wednesday.

If the wording proposed by the officers is rubber-stamped, papers show the authority’s position would be: “The proposed development would introduce very substantial industrial structures into an area of significant natural beauty.

“The site is largely unspoilt and is open farmland on the eastern side of the area characterised as the Humberhead Levels, essentially flat and open arable land.

“The site is immediately adjacent to the ‘Cliff’, a natural geological feature of simple linearity which is especially pronounced at Burton-Upon- Stather, where the steep scarp slope, covered by ancient woodland, meets the simple form of the Trent floodplain.

“The Cliff is one of the highest and most prominent points in North Lincolnshire.

“In this area, vertical structures of the size and scale proposed would be particularly harmful to the visual amenity of the landscape.

“The proposals are therefore contrary to policy LC7 (Landscape Protection) of the North Lincolnshire Local Plan.”

A spokesman for RidgeWind said the firm did not wish to comment on the reasons for refusal until after the planning committee meeting.

The meeting will be held at Pittwood House, on Ashby Road, Scunthorpe, from 2pm.

Source:  Scunthorpe Telegraph, www.thisisscunthorpe.co.uk 5 March 2011

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