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Campaigners urge artist to join fight

Anti-wind farm campaigners are urging world-famous Yorkshire artist David Hockney to join their fight.

It follows Mr Hockney’s surprise visit to workers digging up a gas pipeline in a country lane near his Bridlington home.

The 74-year-old painter warned Northern Gas Networks against causing lasting damage to Woldgate and invited them to his studio to see his paintings of the unspoiled lane.

Now, David Hinde, of the newly formed No To Wolds Wind Farm group, wants the artist to speak out against turbines as well.

His plea comes after an application to erect nine giant turbines in Thornholme Field, right on Mr Hockney’s Bridlington doorstep.

Mr Hinde said: “Woldgate runs right next to the Thornholme development, maybe that will tempt Mr Hockney out of the woodwork.

“If he’s been kicking up about gas pipelines, surely the turbines right next to it are worse. I think the wind turbine battle is more important.”

The Thornholme development comes after 12 huge turbines were built in the same area in Lissett, only three miles away.

Wind Prospect Developments Ltd has drawn up plans for the new scheme, which will generate electricity for more than 10,000 homes.

If approved, construction work would start next year and take about nine to 12 months to complete.

The Bridlington scheme is one of several under consideration in the East Riding.

The Mail revealed the biggest one on Saturday, with the news Scottish Power is considering putting up to 26 turbines on more than 1,700 acres of land between Hornsea and Skirlaugh.

Bridlington mayor Cyril Marsburg welcomed Mr Hockney’s intervention in relation to the gas pipeline work.

But he said: “I would urge Mr Hockney to use his influence to stop wind farms in Bridlington.

“We don’t want any more. They are spoiling the landscape.”

Northern Gas Networks was able to reassure Mr Hockney that Woldgate would not be spoiled by its work.

John O’Grady, director of communications, said: “This has certainly been an unusual job for our engineers, as it is not a regular event for arguably Britain’s greatest living artist to take such a close and hands-on interest in our gas mains laying activities.

“A representative of Mr Hockney’s got in touch to say he wished to discuss the planned works and an on-site meeting was arranged.”