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A windfarm too far for Romney Marsh?

Protest is mounting over plans to build another windfarm in the Rye area.

Energy company Ecotricity is looking to build six 125-metre turbines near the village of Snave.

Save Our Marsh, Block Rural Exploitation, or “Sombre”, a local pressure group, says that the marshes already have one of England’s largest onshore windfarms, with the 26-turbine scheme at Little Cheyne Court near Camber.

Sombre fears that a plethora of small onshore farms could become one giant network of turbines over time.

And Rye Town Council has voted to back Sombre’s position.

Environmentalists claim that Romney marsh is already under threat from the Lydd Airport extension, which recently won Government approval.

“Once so many have been placed strategically around Romney Marsh they will go for the infill,” said Mike Bartlett, a spokesman for Sombre. “We are fighting against it because we fear it will set a precedent.

“About 100 people attended a public meeting to discuss their opposition to the scheme.

“The mood was angry with many warning that the haunting bleak beauty of the marshes was in jeopardy.”

Sombre is led by New Romney councillor Patricia Rolfe who said: “

“These wind farms have significant long-term consequences for Romney Marsh. It should be remembered that 26 wind turbines were installed at Cheyne Farm despite a wave of protests both locally and nationally.

“The decision was taken by the then Secretary of State. A legal challenge was blocked. Despite warnings from various organisations that flora and fauna would be irreversibly damaged, it still went ahead.”

Adrian Knight, who lives near Cheyne Farm, told of the constant hum emitted by the 125-metre-tall turbines.

“It’s like having a conversation with yourself or listening to the waves washing on to the shingle. When you take the dog out for a walk, you don’t want that.” he said.