March 18, 2011

Campaign stepped up against wind farm

Yorkshire Post, 18 March 2011

A campaign to block controversial plans for a wind farm near the Yorkshire coast is being intensified amid concerns the multi-million-pound development will undermine rural communities.

One of the country’s leading green energy firms, Banks Renewables, announced proposals at the start of the year to build up to 14 475ft turbines on agricultural land close to Hunmanby, near Filey.

But a public meeting will be held on Monday to form an action group to campaign against the proposals.

Villagers have claimed that they will be forced to move away from the area if the wind farm becomes a reality.

Tony Aspinall, a former Foreign Office civil servant who retired four years ago, has lived in Hunmanby for 27 years.

The grandfather-of-three, 64, who lives with his wife of 43 years, Sue, said: “It will change the whole ethos of the area. We decided to move to Hunmanby because it is such a wonderful village.

“But if these turbines are built, we will have to move away – no matter how much money it costs us.”

The meeting on Monday will be held at Hunmanby’s community centre from 7.30pm, and will be chaired by a member of the parish council, Michelle Donohue-Moncrieff.

She said: “The turbines will not affect the skyline of Hunmanby, they will be the skyline of Hunmanby.”

The development director at Banks Renewables, Phil Dyke, claimed the company was keen to hear from the public about their concerns.

But he added that developments like the wind farm at Hunmanby will play a “crucial role” in meeting future energy requirements.

The company has also unveiled plans for a five turbines on the outskirts of York at Copmanthorpe, which have caused major opposition.

Planning applications for both schemes could be submitted by the end of the year.

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