A famous Yorkshire landscape artist is backing an anti-wind farm campaign, describing controversial plans for wind turbines in Bronte country as “money-making vandalism”.
Watercolour painter Ashley Jackson contacted the Thornton Moor Wind Farm Action Group following concerns that plans to put up turbines will “desecrate” views believed to have inspired Emily Bronte’s novel Wuthering Heights.
Mr Jackson, 70, said: “As a 16-year-old boy I wrote in my sketch book that I wished to create with a brush what the Bronte’s did with a pen. I cannot then stand back and watch as the landscape that inspires me is desecrated by concrete and metal. These windmills on the moor have been set in tonnes of concrete beneath them. What happens to this when the windmill is no longer productive. Who will remove this from our landscape? Man is destroying the world and this is money-making vandalism.”
Mr Jackson has allowed the campaign to use one of his watercolour paintings on their campaign literature. The artwork, called ‘Ma Look What They Have Done to My Moor’, formed part of his 2010 exhibition at the Mall Galleries in London.
Anthea Orchard, chairman of the action group, said: “Mr Jackson contacted us after the media coverage of the test mast because he was so concerned about what was happening and the damage to the moors.
“We are delighted that he is supporting us.”
Earlier this year, Bradford Council gave planning permission for a 200-foot wind monitoring mast on Thornton Moor.
That approval could lead to developer Banks Renewables building four 330-foot turbines on the green belt.
Phil Dyke, development director at Banks Renewables, said: “Selected parts of the West Yorkshire landscape and the wind speeds recorded in these areas make them suitable for this sort of development, but it is crucial that such projects are taken forward in an inclusive and sensitive way which actively involves local people and enables them to put their own ideas forward about what can be achieved at any given site, as we are doing with our Thornton Moor proposals.”