Controversial plans for a wind turbine on green belt land on the edge of York have been withdrawn after defence chiefs opposed them.
Proposals for the 36-metre mast on farmland in Upper Poppleton were handed in to City of York Council last year, but sparked a wave of objections from local residents, whose claims that the structure was too big and too close to their homes were backed by one of the city’s MPs.
Renewable energy company Earthmill Ltd, the agents for the scheme at Grange Farm on Hodgson Lane, have now withdrawn their application following an objection from the Ministry of Defence (MoD).
The MOD told council planners the turbine – which would be 46 metres high at the tip of its blades – would cause “unacceptable interference” to the air traffic control system at RAF Linton-on-Ouse, ten kilometres away, and lead to aircraft not being picked up on radar screens.
The council’s environmental protection unit has also raised concerns about the noise which would be created by the turbine, saying it could affect “the amenity of residents” and asking the applicants for more information about expected noise levels. Meanwhile, the BBC has written to the authority to say the mast could affect television signals to nearby homes.
In statements sent to council planners, Earthmill had said the turbine’s impact on the surrounding landscape would be “minimised” and it would not be “an isolated feature”. The firm said it would help the farm’s environmental and business aims, and while wind turbines were considered to be inappropriate development in the Green Belt, this could be outweighed by the need to produce renewable energy and address climate change.
It is not yet known whether the application will be resubmitted, having led to 129 objections as well as six letters of support, while the council’s environment and conservation department said it did not believe the turbine would harm local wildlife.