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Locals’ anger over plan for wind turbine

Plans for an 80m wind turbine have left residents in a Cumbrian village dismayed and angry.

Consultation ended this week on proposals to erect a 79.6 metre turbine on a farm just north of Boltongate – the latest in a long list of applications – but it has prompted dissenting voices from nearby property owners.

Planning application documents contain a large number of objections from local residents who feel the proposed turbine is too big, will dominate the landscape and is too close to the existing High Pow windfarm and proposed Little Waver site.

One consultation response, submitted by Valerie Shipp and Peter Thompson, states: “Most damaging of all…is the effect this proposal has had in terms of the people of Boltongate.

“It has caused a lot of distress and anger, loss of neighbourly goodwill and loss of community harmony.

“It seems that the whole village has to suffer the effects of this development for the sake of revenue for one landowner and a company based in Ireland.”

Developers Stern Wind, however, say their proposals are consistent with the local development plan and national planing policy, which “offer overwhelming support for such wind energy development”.

They added: “The site at Lane Head Farm has been identified following extensive research and deemed to be an acceptable and suitable location, providing the necessary balance between capturing the wind resource and protecting the local environment.”

Anti-windfarm campaigner Marion Fitzgerald, a member of Friends of Rural Cumbria’s Environment (FORCE) says that the group has spotted a trend in wind mast applications.

She said: “We have noticed that a lot of people are asking for single turbines.

“They are middle-sized, and certainly not little 15-metre masts.

“It’s a rather worrying tendency and there’s a strong possibility that enough of them come in under the radar then it will change the landscape classification. We are very worried about it.”