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‘Turbine near Rudston monolith could lead to near-destruction of historical landscape’

Campaigners say plans for a wind turbine near the UK’s tallest prehistoric monolith could lead to the “near-destruction” of an East Riding beauty spot.

Proposals have been unveiled for a turbine measuring almost 70 metres in the village of Rudston, near Bridlington.

Now, campaigners are calling for English Heritage to have a say in whether or not the turbine should go ahead.

Maureen Bell, of Bridlington Civic Society, has sent a memo to the watchdog, warning planning approval could smooth the way for further turbines.

She wrote: “I am sending this memo to let you know how concerned Bridlington Civic Society is about the potential proliferation of large wind turbines on the high Wolds.

“The Rudston turbine could well be a test case, resulting in the near-destruction of the historical landscape.”

The plans were submitted to East Riding Council on July 4 but planning officers did not contact English Heritage about the proposals until last week.

Bridlington Civic Society said the group should have been asked earlier for its views.

Ms Bell, the group’s secretary, said: “The Civic Society wants all the relevant bodies to be consulted – I can only assume this was an oversight.

“The proposed site is quite close to and within sight of the Rudston Monolith.”

The monolith stands in the village churchyard and probably dates from about 1600BC.

Rudston is also the birthplace of Winifred Holtby, who made the landscape famous in her novel South Riding.

The turbine will be visible from the windows of her house.

Ms Bell said: “When people look at that landscape, it’s a very sacred landscape in that it was used for rituals centred on Rudston.

“It’s a very important area and there are ditches that run for miles and end up in Rudston.

“Although farming has taken place in the hundreds of years since, the landscape is still recognisable.”

Neil Redfern, a team leader at English Heritage’s Yorkshire office, said they had been aware of the concerns and had asked the council to see the application.

A council spokesman said English Heritage was contacted by phone on Wednesday, August 8, but there was a delay in sending formal documents out.

He said: “We’re now consulting them and it’s important they give any views they might have.”