Developers behind a bid to build a multi-million pound wind farm near the Yorkshire coast have pledged to forge closer links with villagers who remain staunchly opposed to the plans.
Officials from Banks Renewables met residents for the first time on Monday in a new forum set up to allay concerns over the controversial scheme earmarked for agricultural land close to Hunmanby, near Filey.
Opposition has been mounting to the project that would see as many as 14 475ft turbines built amid claims the wind farm would ruin the views across the countryside.
Questions have also been raised over whether onshore wind farms present a viable source of renewable energy as they only work when the wind blows.
But the development director at Banks Renewables, Phil Dyke, maintained the company remains committed to the South Dale project to build the wind farm at Hunmanby.
About 30 people attended the first meeting of the forum, and Mr Dyke claimed there is “clearly room” for more engagement with the local communities.
A second meeting of the panel is now being planned for September, and more events are due to held during the coming months to engage with residents.
Mr Dyke said: “The community panel will provide a valuable forum for discussing the key issues surrounding our proposals, and the greater degree of local representation that we get, the more effective they will become.”
The planned wind farm scheme has, however, already been hit by setbacks.
Proposals to install a 260ft monitoring mast, which would have helped Banks Renewables select the most suitable site for the wind farm, were blocked by Scarborough Borough Council’s planning committee in April.
A spokeswoman for Banks Renewables confirmed the company has submitted an appeal against the council’s decision.
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