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Cumbrian villagers sign petition opposing new windfarms

A petition against further windfarm development at Bolton Low Houses collected more than 100 signatures at two exhibition days last week.

There are three wind turbines at the High Pow site, which is less than 3km from the proposed Little Waver and High Pow 2 sites and if they both went ahead this would increase the number of turbines in the vicinity to 14.

Both Little Waver and High Pow 2 are in the pre-submission phase of planning and the current application by Your Energy is for a 70ft tall mast to test the area’s power-producing capabilities.

However, the 71 signatures collected on the first day prompted Bolton’s parish council to vote overwhelmingly against the current application.

All in all 115 signatures were collected over the two days and Marion Fitzgerald, a resident of Bolton Low Houses, believes this shows that the majority of the community oppose the development.

She said: “I know from living here that there are fewer than 100 houses in Bolton Low Houses and I got 115 signatures. That suggests that a high percentage of people feel that we have enough wind turbines.

“I wasn’t surprised at the number of signatures but I was very pleased, and I think it’s very important that people say what they really feel.

“The local people of this parish are saying that they feel this area is not suitable for further development.

“The danger is that if someone doesn’t do something soon we are going to end up with a ring of steel around the Lake District.”

Official documents say that government policy encourages “continued protection of the open countryside for the benefit of all, with the highest level of protection for our most valued landscapes and environmental resources”.

It also says policy will promote “good quality, sustainable development that respects and, where possible, enhances local distinctiveness and the intrinsic qualities of the countryside”.

However, Ms Fitzgerald does not agree with this, and said: “The petition itself was not against renewable energy, but against these plans.

“The feeling against the turbines is getting stronger and stronger.”

Rory Stewart, MP for Penrith and the Border, has set up a website to help people fight wind farm proposals in Cumbria. It can be found at www.cumbriawindwatch.co. uk.

Your Energy, the company behind the proposals, has a website at www.littlewaverwindfarm.com.