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Fight against egg farm's wind turbine scheme  

Credit:  Staffordshire Newsletter, www.staffordshirenewsletter.co.uk 24 June 2011 ~~

Angry residents are fighting plans for three huge wind turbines in a quiet Stafford village as they fear it will wreck the countryside.

Householders in Chebsey say the 80ft turbines, planned for Park Farm in Shallowford, will have a devastating impact on the area.

The application has been submitted by Parkland Farm Eggs, which currently uses the site as a ranging field for hens and sheep grazing.

The turbines would serve the associated egg production unit, generating 90,000kw of electricity, which is 100 per cent of its total use, for lighting, ventilation, conveyor belts, egg packing and feeder tracks in the buildings and electric stock fences outside. At times of low demand power would be fed into the National Grid.

The plans have been recommended for approval and are set to be given the go ahead by councillors at a planning meeting on Wednesday.

But villagers have major concerns about the scheme and are being supported by ward councillor Frank Chapman, who has called the item in for debate at the committee in a bid to persuade councillors to vote against it.

They fear the turbines will be a blot on the landscape, as well as being too close to houses.

There are also concerns as the wind farm is at the site being earmarked by Network Rail to build extra track to improve the Norton Bridge junction.

Helen Emery, speaking on behalf of residents in the village, said: “The proposed site is an area of outstanding beauty with the main characteristics for which this landscape is valued are its open fields, its stretching skylines and patchwork of mixed farmland and woodland. “Residents fear that should this application be granted this could lead to further applications for turbines in the neighbouring communities which will lead to a devastating impact on the Staffordshire countryside and local communities.

“Residents feel that government legislation is this country is needed to ensure that wind turbines are sited appropriately. As per other countries, legislation within the UK should identify a minimum distance to dwellings and lessen the impact on our precious countryside.” In a report to the planning committee the applicant said other technologies, including solar panels, were looked at but were not considered viable.

The applicant said the turbines would be visible in the landscape but more distant views of them would be interrupted by landscape, trees and hedges and rising land up to Shallowford Road would substantially screen the village from views of the turbines. The applicant says the nearest property would be about 220metres from the southern most turbine and the next nearest would be about 270metres away, and while the turbines would be visible, they would not be overdominating or overbearing, and noise from the turbines would not impact on properties.

Source:  Staffordshire Newsletter, www.staffordshirenewsletter.co.uk 24 June 2011

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

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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