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Rejection calls over planed 99m turbines near Ulverston

Five giant wind turbines would be a blight on the Furness landscape, say council planning officers.

Plans to build the 99.5m (326ft) tall structures in Pennington are due to be discussed by South Lakeland District Council tomorrow, but look set to be rejected.

A report to planning committee members says the “intimidating” turbines would harm neighbours’ living conditions and cause the character of the area to be “completely lost”.

The turbines, with a 2.3MW power output, are almost twice as tall as five they would replace.

The application falls on council boundaries, meaning three of the turbines would be within the Barrow Borough Council area and the other two within South Lakeland.

However, a single application has been submitted to both authorities “due to viability”, meaning refusal from either council would likely put an end to any development.

The application is from energy firm Infinergy, which would own the three turbines in the Barrow borough.

The owner of the exiting turbines, Baywind Energy Cooperative, would retain the two turbines in South Lakeland.

While it is accepted that the development would improve renewable energy generation in the area, the impact on the surrounding area is deemed to outweigh the benefits, according to SLDC planning officials.

The five new turbines would provide energy for around 6,000 homes and offset between 11,000 and 26,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year.

But a visual impact report submitted to the council said the effect of installing the bigger turbines would be “significant”.

The report advises members: “The importance of protecting existing assets must be expressly weighed against the benefits that would result from the proposal.

“Given the severity of harm to individual properties, the fact that relatively few properties are affected is not significant.

“The proposal will make a tangible contribution to targets for renewable energy generation.

“However, the contribution to achieving regional and national targets for renewable energy generation does not outweigh the adverse visual impacts of the proposal, the harm to living conditions of local residents and the significant impacts on users of the adjacent public footpaths taken together.”

A decision from Barrow planners is pending.

A date for them to discuss the application has yet to be set.