March 20, 2013

Town councillors’ ‘no’ to wind farm

Eastbourne Herald | 20 March 2013 |

Revised plans for a wind farm in Polegate have been turned down by town councillors after they said the proposed scheme was in the ‘wrong location’ and ‘an intrusion on the landscape’.

Galliford Try Renewables put new plans on the table after it withdraw an application for five wind turbines on land off Shepham Lane.

The latest plans are for three wind turbines and were discussed by Polegate Town Council’s planning committee last Thursday.

Tom Porter from Galliford Try spoke to the committee and said the new plans had been adjusted to address concerns by removing two wind turbines, reducing the height of the remaining three and pushing them slightly closer together.

Other people in the audience spoke in favour of the plans with Andrew Durling from the Yes to Polegate Wind Farm group stating that renewable energy was important to the country, while another resident, Trevor Stone, said, “This would be an ideal location for them. A lot of people I spoke to are in favour as well.”

But other residents said they were against the proposals and concerns over the distance between the turbines and the nearest property were highlighted, with one resident saying that the distance was closer than Mr Porter had stated.

Roy Van der Kieft said, “All the issues I brought up at the last meeting are still relevant, wildlife, the loss of amenity.

“The majority of local people object and that’s important.”

Councillor Hugh Parker kicked off the debate saying he had no problems with wind turbines per se but added, “I fail to see that three turbines stuck in a field in Polegate will be worth the effort.

“My personal view is it’s an inappropriate location and insufficient to be of any value to the national grid.”

Councillor Chris Berry said she was also against the location, while Councillor Margaret Piper said, “In the summer and spring we have swans and Canadian Geese flying over, these turbines are directly in the flight path.

“As a council we have a duty of care that our residents are entitled to live in the homes they worked hard for in peace and comfort.”

A motion for no approval was put forward by Councillor Tim Voyce and was backed unanimously by the committee. After the meeting the Yes to Polegate Wind Farm group issued a statement saying it was disappointed by the council’s decision.

A final decision will be made at a later date by Wealden District Council.

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