Controversial plans to build five 100m turbines on farmland near Wellow have tonight (Monday) been thrown out by the Isle of Wight Council.
The Vectis Wind Farm application, submitted by Dorset-based company Infinergy, was refused by the authority’s planning committee.
Infinergy told the County Press it would appeal against the decision.
More than 2,000 comments were submitted in relation to the application – 1,274 in favour and around 836 opposed – to build the turbines on agricultural land surrounded on three sides by Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs).
The application included plans for control buildings, a substation and access tracks from Thorley, off Broad Lane and Thorley Street.
The five turbines would have generated a maximum of 12.5MW of electricity per year, according to Infinergy, which would have been supplied to the national grid via underground cables.
In addition to the renewable energy benefits of the scheme, Infinergy said the wind farm would contribute financially towards a community fund to be invested in community projects. Infinergy would have provided £2,000 per MW per year for the lifetime of the project.
But despite local and national policies encouraging renewable energy schemes, the planning committee accepted the officer recommendation that it be refused.
After hearing from supporters and objectors, committee members agreed the adverse visual impact of the wind farm on the character of the landscape and surrounding AONB would outweigh the benefits.
Councillors voted nine to one in favour of refusal, with Cllr Reg Barry the only councillor not to vote in favour of the recommendation to refuse.
Previous high profile wind farm applications, including one for six turbines near the Wellow site, submitted in 2006, and another at Cheverton Down, Shorwell, dating back to 2009, have also been refused by the council.
*Infinergy project director Herb Lindlahr said: “The decision is very disappointing and we will appeal within weeks.
“I do not think democracy worked tonight. The majority of people who wrote to the council clearly supported the application.
“I think the reasons for the objections were quite weak.”
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