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Residents win fight against wind turbines  

Credit:  Gloucestershire Echo | February 06, 2013 | www.thisisgloucestershire.co.uk ~~

Residents opposed to the plans to install three huge wind turbines near Tewkesbury are celebrating victory.

It follows the borough council’s decision yesterday to reject Bristol-based Wind Prospect’s planning application.

It wanted to put the 126m-high structures on farmland overlooking the M5 and M50 motorways.

They would have been close to Upper Strensham, about 300 yards north of the M50 and near to Harbour Wood.

Wind Prospect said the renewable energy source would have provided enough electricity to power 3,000 homes for a year. It had been waiting since 2009 for the application to come before the planning committee.

Councillors refused it after hearing that there had been 279 letters against the scheme and just nine in favour.

Residents feared the turbines’ noise would disturb them, as would a flickering shadow caused by the sun shining between the rotating blades. They also felt the turbines would be a blot on the landscape.

After the decision had been made, Dave Wallbank, chairman of the Strensham Wind Action Group, said: “It’s great news for the local area and for the residents that would have been affected.

“It reinforces the fact that it’s not a suitable area for this. There are more than 140 homes within 1,000m of the planned turbines, so it’s not a remote area where there are one or two isolated dwellings.”

He added that he would not be surprised if Wind Prospect appealed against the decision.

“It’s another battle won but not necessarily the end of it, ” he said.

Councillors backed their officers’ view that the application should be refused for various reasons. They included the fear that they would spoil the view of the nearby Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and the nearby Malvern Hills AONB.

Another concern was that the turbines could impinge on the setting of the nearby 18th-century Croome Court.

Members also heard that two families living in Strensham feared their autistic children’s health could be seriously damaged by the turbines.

Source:  Gloucestershire Echo | February 06, 2013 | www.thisisgloucestershire.co.uk

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