December 2, 2011

Massive opposition to turbine plan

By Tom Johannsen, 2 December 2011

Controversial plans for a ‘micro-generation’ wind turbine on farmland near Market Drayton have been met with a storm of opposition from residents following two public meetings.

More than 60 people in Adderley have raised fears that a planned 55kw turbine on land at Bawhill Farm would be a ‘monstrosity’ in the unspoilt countryside and could be a source of background noise.

Wildlife enthusiasts at Shropshire Wildlife Trust have also raised fears for bats and birds because the planned turbine is about 500 metres away from St Peter’s Church in the village.

It comes after Stephen Cope applied to Shropshire Council for planning permission for the scheme.

It would stand 46 metres tall to the blade tip on agricultural land and is classed as a small micro-generation turbine.

According to documents supporting the application, the applicants want to use the energy generated by the turbine to slash their fuel bills by supplying eco-friendly renewable electricity to the farm and farmhouse as utility bills continue to soar.

But now dozens of residents have submitted objections to the scheme with the planning department, meaning it is likely to go before Shropshire Council’s north planning committee for a final decision.

Robin Mager from Shropshire Wildlife Trust said: “The turbine is only some 500 metres from St Peter’s Church, which is recorded as supporting a roost of natterer’s bats, and there may be a potential for negative impact.”

Adderley resident Gavin McCann said: “Not only will this monstrosity ruin the lovely little village of Adderley, it will scare all the wildlife and ruin the beautiful scenery.”

Another resident, Paul Shepley, said: “The proposed tower would be almost as tall as Nelson’s Column and be taller than the highest tower in Shropshire – Lord Hill’s Column.

“Everyone in the village is concerned about the permanent change to the landscape and destruction of the beauty we all enjoy.”

He added: “The opinion from almost the entire village of Adderley is against a wind turbine so very close to houses, the grade-I listed church and the entire village.

“The village is not necessarily against wind turbines – just a sensitive and considerate location.”

Shropshire Council is aiming to decide the application by mid December and public consultation ends on Tuesday (6).

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