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National park plan for Yorkshire Wolds

The Yorkshire Wolds should be made a national park or area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB), campaigners have said.

Conservationists and wind-farm opponents spoke out after East Riding of Yorkshire Council refused plans for a mast near Driffield.

Had it been given the go-ahead on Thursday, the plan would have seen the construction of a 200ft wind monitoring mast on land near Blakedale Farm, in Nafferton.

But Steve Hey, chairman of the No To Wolds Wind Farm Group, welcomed the council’s decision and said: “This could be the wind of change needed; a significant moment where the bigger picture has finally been seen.

“It would seem the future protection of the Yorkshire Wolds has now become a high priority for East Riding of Yorkshire Council.”

He said: “There has never been a better time to work together and achieve national park or AONB status for one of the country’s finest landscapes.”

The group said its calls for a new national park were repeated by councillors at Thursday’s meeting.

Mr Hey said: “As a group we are now seeking East Riding Council support to get some form of designation under way and will also be requesting the full support of the parish and town councils across the boroughs and districts involved.”

In refusing the plans for the mast, council members went against the recommendations of their own planning officers.

According to Gaoh Energy, the company which submitted the application, the mast would have been used to test wind speeds with a view to installing wind turbines in the area in the future.

According to East Riding of Yorkshire Council, the plans were refused on the grounds of the impact the mast would have had on the surrounding landscape.