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Inquiry to decide on Northumberland wind farm plan  

Credit:  By Paul Tully, The Journal, www.journallive.co.uk 23 May 2011 ~~

The long-running dispute over plans for a wind farm in Northumberland will be settled at a public inquiry this summer.

A date of July 26 has been set for the inquiry into an appeal by RWE Npower Renewables Ltd over Northumberland County Council’s rejection of their application for the site at Kirkharle.

RWE want to set up four wind turbines on land to the east of Bavington Hill Head Farm, though they have scrapped plans to erect another four west of Northside Farm, near Kirkharle.

The Swindon-based company has appealed over the claimed failure of Northumberland County Council to give notice of its decision within the statutory 16-week deadline. It has submitted a revised environmental assessment which has now been made publicly available.

The noise assessment company commissioned by RWE, Hoare Lea Acoustics, says operational noise from the four turbines “will be within levels deemed by national policy and guidance to be acceptable for wind energy schemes”.

The closest residence in the sparsely-populated area is 570 metres away and HLA says noise levels will be “acceptable” while construction noise would be “negligible”.

Northumberland National Park Authority withdrew its objections when RWE halved its objective from eight turbines to four.

Its development management committee agreed the 125-metre-high turbines would not “impact significantly” when viewed from key sites such as Hadrian’s Wall and Simonside.

They would be situated five miles from the Northumberland National Park boundary.

Objectors and campaigners fear the possible cumulative effect with other wind farms nearby.

Northumberland County Council’s Planning and Environment Committee refused the application last year because insufficient data was provided.

But now a detailed 96-page dossier has been put forward by RWE which will go before the Government Planning Inspector at Prospect House, Hexham, on July 26.

Source:  By Paul Tully, The Journal, www.journallive.co.uk 23 May 2011

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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