A clarion call has been made for villagers to unite against plans for a wind farm on the outskirts of York amid warnings a costly legal battle could ensue.
The campaign against the development at Copmanthorpe has seen a surge of support after villagers held a public meeting at the end of last week.
More than 500 residents attended the meeting on Friday, although campaign leaders have maintained not all villagers are aware of the impact the wind farm could have on local communities.
The Copmanthorpe Wind Farm Action Group’s secretary, Alan Davidson, warned that any legal challenge to the proposals could cost in excess of £70,000 once planning consultants and barristers have been recruited.
Mr Davidson, a retired telecommunications manager who has lived in Copmanthorpe for 20 years with his wife, Dorothy, said: “The scale of the wind turbines would be immense, and would ruin the surrounding area.
“We need to educate as many residents as possible to realise the scale of the wind farm that is proposed. The sails alone would cover the equivalent size of the Wembley football pitch as they turn.”
One of the country’s leading green energy firms, Banks Renewables, is behind the proposals to build up to five 475ft turbines, each costing £2.5m, at Copmanthorpe, as well as another wind farm at Hunmanby, near Filey.
The Companthorpe wind farm would generate enough electricity each year to power about 8,300 homes.
An initial report on the project has been submitted by Banks Renewables to York Council, along with a planning application for a wind monitoring mast.
Planning applications are due to be submitted for both wind farms towards the end of the year, and they could be operational in 2013 if permission is secured.
As many as 100 construction jobs are expected to be created if both wind farms are built.
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