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Hundreds oppose new turbine plan  

Credit:  The Sentinel | www.thisisstaffordshire.co.uk 29 September 2012 ~~

More than 850 residents have objected to plans to build a wind turbine at a beauty-spot.

Dairy farmer Stuart Heath has asked Staffordshire Moorlands District Council for permission to build a 34.2m (112ft) mast at Red Earth Farm, Rudyard.

But a total of 860 people have so far objected to the scheme, which would generate 135,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of energy.

Objectors say the application would ruin the Roaches skyline and spoil the scenic views of a nearby bridleway.

Protesters also say the turbine would be clearly seen from the Peak District National Park and could have a detrimental impact on wildlife.

Eleven letters have also been received by the council supporting the application, on the grounds that it will provide energy for future generations.

Mr Heath says the wind turbine is a fraction of the size of a previous application which was thrown out last December.

It will also be sited at a lower point on a hill, which he says, will mean it won’t be visible from many points along the bridleway, the Roaches or Peak District National Park.

Mr Heath’s agent, Simon Oborn, said: “It is a completely different application.

“The electricity will be used by the dairy farm. At the moment, he is paying quite a lot of money for energy and farming is struggling, nationally.

“No-one is going to be looking at this turbine.

“It will not cause an ecological problem. Where it is, no-one will be able to hear it.

“It is supporting a sustainable farming business.

“It is significantly lower down the hill than the previous application.

“From many views, you won’t be able to pick it out at all.

“The original turbine would have been seen for miles.

“This is nothing like that – it is a farm-sized scheme.”

The previous application was for a 72-metre (236ft) mast which would have provided energy for the whole farm and for up to 472 other homes.

But the scheme sparked more than 1,500 objections – making it the most controversial dealt with by the district council in recent years.

Horton councillor Norma Hawkins, Conservative, said: “Last time, I had a tremendous amount of calls about it, because of the sheer size.

“This time, there has not been as many. I have still had some calls but there doesn’t seem to be the same amount of objection.

“People are concerned about a proliferation of wind turbines.

“We live in a beautiful area. I wouldn’t want to see a proliferation of wind turbines.

“You have to accept the green argument – but it would be quite easy to spoil a beautiful area.”

Source:  The Sentinel | www.thisisstaffordshire.co.uk 29 September 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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