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Protesters vow to fight on against wind farm plan for east Cleveland

Campaigners have vowed to continue their fight to block plans to build wind farms across east Cleveland.

Developer Banks Renewables has planning permission from Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council to erect 60m test masts on the site of the proposed Bank Field windfarm, on land north of the A171, near Guisborough.

The test masts will be installed on Monday.

The decision to approve the mast has angered the FIGHT (Fight In Guisborough to Halt Turbines) action group, which is continuing to oppose the overall project.

Members protested outside Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council’s planning committee meeting before permission was granted for the wind speed monitoring mast to be erected.

Co-chairman George Tinsley said: “These masts are only going up as planning committee members, who represent the public of this area, did not have the courage to turn them down, as has happened elsewhere.

“Our petition against this scheme has reached 10,000 signatures – and rising. We’re confident it will be rejected in due course.

“The public says it will spoil an attractive area of Cleveland’s countryside, tourism and overshadow thousands of homes and the town’s historic priory.

“FIGHT is gathering evidence to counter all developers’ claims.

“This is going to be massive – one of the biggest fights Cleveland has ever seen on windfarms.”

A number of 410ft high wind turbines will be installed at Park Woods, on Gisborough Estate, if plans are approved.

Developers say the masts will enable an assessment of wind conditions on site, gathering data for the design process, over a temporary period of three years. The installation is expected to take around two days to complete and “will not involve any disruption to local traffic.”

Phil Dyke, Banks Renewables development director, said the masts will be “unobtrusive structures”.

He says he has been “encouraged by feedback received about our plans from many locals who recognise the importance of generating more of the energy we use from renewable sources”.

A planning application for the turbines is expected to be submitted later this year.

For further information about the proposed Bank Field wind farm scheme, contact the Banks Renewables’ community engagement team by calling 0844-209-1515.