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Fears turbine applications will ‘open the floodgates’  

Credit:  North-West Evening Mail, www.nwemail.co.uk 26 October 2011 ~~

Angry residents have hit out at windfarm proliferation at a time when decisions are expected on 10 separate developments in Barrow borough.

A public meeting was called at Rampside Village Hall following concerns over applications submitted to Barrow Borough Council.

Councillor Ray Guselli, who represents Roosecote on the council, took on board points raised at the meeting and was to raise them with planning officers and members of the planning committee.

The meeting was chaired by Councillor Ken Williams, who also represents Roosecote and is a planning committee member.

Cllr Guselli said turbines were a blot on the landscape and that Aberdeenshire should be looked at as an example of a county now dominated by hundreds.

Paul Jackson, of Stank, accused the borough council of being unprepared for an influx of turbine applications, despite the trend in other parts of the county.

He said: “Barrow Borough Council has no policy, no strategy, no plan.”

Mr Jackson and wife, Gayle, said the council’s policy that turbines should be no closer than 400 metres from a home was not enough.

Jackie Casson, of Stank, said turbines were “ugly”, bad for tourism, and that proposed sites such as Furness Abbey and the hill above Stank were inappropriate. A resident who lives next to a Newton farm at the centre of a planning application said: “Our fear is, if they pass one on the farm, they will want another one and another one, and it will open the floodgates.”

But Eunice Pearson, whose son Philip Pearson is behind the turbine planned for Newholme Farm, Rampside, defended the application, and said: “You mention the countryside and everything looking lovely, I agree – we want it to look nice. But how are farmers going to make a living later on? There’s going to be a shortage of food in a few years’ time and farmers are finding it hard.

“They were encouraged to go in for it. It’s just one. We’re not wanting a load.”

Some residents claimed turbine applications were all about the subsidies developers stood to make.

Alan Stoker, of Furness Windturbine Action Group, argued the energy generated by several of the proposed turbines did not justify them being built. He said: “We want to stop it and we pray that when these come before the committee and when they’ve analysed these numbers in depth, they can find justifiable reasons to reject them.”

The meeting, of around 25 people, applauded Marton, Askam and Ireleth Windfarm Action Group member, Les Nichols, who told of the group’s determined, but failed, bid to block the windfarm built on Far Old Park Farm, Ireleth.

Mr Nichols, of Ireleth, said: “Turbines are destroying this place and I don’t think Barrow Town Hall has got its act together. They need to get their ducks in a row.”

Source:  North-West Evening Mail, www.nwemail.co.uk 26 October 2011

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

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