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Villagers embark on fresh wind power battle  

Credit:  By Helen Russell, Reporter (Wear Valley), The Northern Echo, www.thenorthernecho.co.uk 5 June 2012 ~~

People who spent 18 months campaigning against a wind farm in their village are now fighting plans for a turbine in the area.

More than 20 people from Bolam attended an emergency public meeting to discuss a planning application submitted to Darlington Borough Council involving a plan for a 47m-high turbine at Leggs Cross Farm, which is located on the outskirts of the village.

About three-quarters of those who attended the event voted to fight the proposals and many have submitted statements of objection to the borough council’s planning department. Phillip Tweddle, who chaired the meeting, said: “When the meeting was opened for discussion and opinions for and against the plans, the overriding feeling was that the turbine would have a substantial effect on the impact of the natural landscape value in the area.

“It would also affect the historic, listed Leggs Cross monument and the conservation area of Bolam itself.

Concerns were also raised that it could possibly distract motorists travelling through the already dangerous junction on the road through the village.”

He said a letter would be submitted to Darlington Borough Council on behalf of residents at the meeting, stating their concerns and objections.

A document contained within the planning application stated that, if it was given the go-ahead, the turbine would generate 150 per cent of the energy needed to run the farm and that a nearby plantation would block large parts of the turbine.

Despite the fact that some of the facility would still be visible, the document also stated it would not be enough to cause unacceptable harm.

In 2009, RWE Npower Renewables applied to install seven 125m turbines near the village but withdrew the plans after an 18-month David and Goliath-style battle with residents. During the campaign, the village was classified as a conservation area.

The plans for the turbine planned at Leggs Cross Farm have yet to be discussed by the authority’s planning committee.

Source:  By Helen Russell, Reporter (Wear Valley), The Northern Echo, www.thenorthernecho.co.uk 5 June 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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