Anti-windfarm protesters have flown a blimp to galvanise support against Peel Energy’s plans to erect nine 125m turbines on land between the Asfordby villages and Ab Kettleby.
The helium balloon went up on the southern end of the proposal site, about 750m from Asfordby Valley, on Friday and Saturday.
Opposition group STOP decided to fly the blimp, with the permission of landowners UK Coal, after a previous joint exercise with Peel back in March was affected by adverse weather. This time the initiative was entirely funded by individuals and organisations opposed to the turbines, including Ab Kettleby Parish Council, at a cost of about £1,800.
Bill Musson, on behalf of STOP, said: “When the first blimp was flown people living in Ab Kettleby, Wartnaby and the Horseguards Way area of Melton were shocked to discover the visual impact the turbines would have. We considered it was important that people living in the Asfordby villages should have that same opportunity.”
Alan Duncan, MP for Rutland and Melton, welcomed STOP’s action. He said: “If we could harness the energy of these doughty campaigners we wouldn’t need the wind farm. The local community has really got behind this initiative to give people a good idea of what is at stake.”
Peel Energy said it had agreed to fly a blimp earlier this year as a gesture of goodwill but insisted the best way to appreciate the wind turbines, the noise levels when operational, how public access is managed and how they sit within the landscape is to visit one of the many operational windfarms across the country.
Melton Council said it was awaiting additional information from Peel, amended plans and the correct planning fee these new plans would generate.
A spokesman added: “Once these amendments are received we will need to publicise them and re-consult all interested parties, and then consider the plans and comments before taking the application to committee.”
l For more visit:- www.STOPtheturbines.org www.peelenergy.co.uk/asfordby-wind-farm and www.melton.gov.uk