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Rutland County Council to consider Morcott wind turbine plans

Plans to build a second 88ft wind turbine at a farm could be approved, despite strong opposition from nearby residents.

Dennis Pridmore has applied to build a second mast at Springfield Lodge farm in North Luffenham Road, Morcott.

The plans will go before Rutland County Council’s development control and licensing committee on Tuesday and has been recommended for approval by planning officers.

A number of Morcott residents and parish councillors have objected to the proposals. A total of 35 letters of objection were sent to the county council, along with two in support of the turbine.

John Judge, of South Luffenham Road, Morcott, wrote: “We are extremely concerned over the impact this proposal would have on both the immediate local area, and Rutland as a whole.

“We feel the risks to the unique landscape character of the area are immense, and once damaged will be all but impossible to remedy in the future.”

Mr Judge said that the turbine would harm the attractiveness of Rutland as a residential area and would have a damaging effect on tourism and associated businesses.

A Morcott Parish Council statement added: “The village as a whole will suffer as its principal outlook to the north will be adversely affected.”

The application came before the development control and licensing committee for the first time in June. Rutland County Councillor for the Martinsthorpe ward, which includes Morcott, Edward Baines, spoke against the plans at the meeting.

A decision on the plans was then deferred for a month so members of the committee could see the site for themselves.

The planning officers’ report to the committee says the proposal does not go against planning policy. It adds: “Given the height of the proposal, the cumulative impact and its positioning in relation to the existing unit and surrounding settlements, officers do not consider that the proposed wind turbine has a sufficiently detrimental impact on the character of the surrounding countryside to justify refusal of the application.

“Similarly, with regard to the views out of the conservation area and the associated impact upon it, the turbine is not considered to significantly alter the existing situation and there is therefore no justification for refusal on this basis.”

An application to build wind turbines in Ketton is also currently being considered by the county council.

REG Windpower wants to build two 330ft masts on land off Steadfold Lane. The firm has held a number of public exhibitions and consultations on the plans and has set up a website, www.steadfoldlanewindfarm.co.uk, with information about the plans.

Opposition has been raised by Ketton and Tinwell residents, who have set up a protest group called the Ketton and Tinwell Action Group against Wind Turbines.

The group has set up its own website, at www.stopsteadfoldlanewindfarm.co.uk.

The site contains information about the plans, including links to the application on the Rutland County Council website and a range of objections from the Ministry of Defence and the Hanson Cement plant, which is close to the site.

There are links to Rutland County Council members’ contact details and a form to contact the group itself.