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MoD blocks wind turbines proposal

Paul Gray, the boss of Grantham-based property development company Bickford, has expressed his frustration regarding plans he had to erect 20m high wind turbines on industrial land at Sleaford.

He had proposed to site 10 wind turbines on land previously occupied by Staples Disposables off East Road but he claimed the matter had been blocked by the Ministry of Defence amid concerns over the dangerously confusing affect wind farms have on aircraft radar.

Mr Gray said: “North Kesteven District Council’s planning officers have been very helpful but no-one can put up a wind turbine in the whole area without the approval of the MoD and so NKDC had to refuse it. But it negates wind turbines being put up within a 20 mile radius.”

He said the only way round the block was to spend many thousands of pounds on a sophisticated electronic radar warning system but that, he claimed, would be uneconomic for a wind turbine site of this scale which was only likely to involve an investment of around £70,000.

At the moment the land is used for lorry parking. Mr Gray said any turbines lower than 15m high would not be viable.

The company had looked at solar power but found the returns were disappointing. Mr Gray added: “I am annoyed because our site was perfect. We have written to NKDC and the MoD to find out what the minimum height they would allow would be.”

In response to an enquiry from the Sleaford Standard, the district council stated the MoD has advised that it should be consulted if a proposed wind turbine is 11 metres to blade tip or taller and has a rotor diameter of two metres or more.