A wind turbine plan is in the doldrums after councillors gave it the thumbs-down.
Wychavon District Council’s planning committee refused plans for a turbine up to 91 metres high on a ridge over-looking junction 6 of the M5, near Worcester.
Councillor Judy Pearce, elected planning chief, said the lack of detail on wind speed in the area, the geology of the ground which would hold the turbine’s foundations, and the “invidious” inclusion of the developer’s forecast it could power “up to 600 homes” was worrying.
But she and other councillors agreed the visual impact on the landscape and the effects on wildlife habitats were reasons to turn down the application by Distributed Generation Ltd.
John Zamick, developer, said it would have “a relatively modest impact” on the surroundings.
He said “the age of cheap energy was over” and described the developer firm as “the good guys”.
“We may not be doing what some people want,” he said.
“It reduces CO2 emission, it helps energy security for the UK, and it will employ British workers.”
Under a proposed income share deal, he said Tibberton Parish Council – opposed to the plan – would take an estimated £20,000 a year in energy income from the turbine.
However, all but two councillors voted for refusal – contrary to their planning officers’ advice.
Coun Rob Adams supported wind power but but said it was “not the right area”.
Coun Adrian Darby said there was a risk to birds and bats flying through.
He said there was “a lack of biodiversity evidence” about wildlife in the area, and the risk of harm was therefore too great.
Coun Pearce said the area by Tibberton was “typical Worcestershire countryside” with copses of trees, hamlets, farmhouses and churches visible.
“To ruin that with a wind turbine that may or may not power 600 homes is not acceptable,” he said After yesterday’s meeting, Chris Hartwright, parish council chairman said he was “very pleased” with the outcome.
The developer has the right to appeal the decision.
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