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Residents battle plan for wind farm test mast between Catterick and Northallerton  

Credit:  By Stuart Minting | The Northern Echo | 17th March 2013 | www.thenorthernecho.co.uk ~~

Residents from two North Yorkshire districts have united to battle a plan which could lead to a wind farm dominating the skyline for miles around their homes.

Householders in an area between Catterick and Northallerton, said while RWE Npower Renewables Ltd, one of Europe’s largest renewable energy generating firms, stands to make a fortune at the site, the value of their properties will plummet.

The firm which runs wind farms at Tow Law, County Durham and Knabs Ridge, near Harrogate, has applied to Hambleton District Council to erect a 91.5m-high steel meteorological test mast at Whitwell, near Scorton, overlooking the Coast to Coast path.

A spokesman for the firm, said it hoped to install the mast in the summer to collect data to provide a detailed understanding of the site’s wind characteristics, enabling it to assess if the site was suitable for wind energy development.

He said there would be no activity at the mast site other than twice a year for routine maintenance and that there was no designated sites of historical or landscape significance nearby.

He said: “The mast would be a slim lightweight structure that would increasingly become scarcely visible to the naked eye with distance.

“Given that the nearest non-financially involved residential property is over 800m from the proposed mast, it is unlikely that there would be any significant impacts on any properties such that they would be rendered less attractive places to live.”

But residents of Whitwell, Scorton, Kirkby Fleetham and Forest, say they will fight the plan.

Robert Hudson Blenkey, of Forest, said: “The uninterupted view that all of the cottages in the hamlet currently enjoy would be obliterated, and as such there would be a significant negative impact on the value of my property and those in the hamlet.”

While the Ramblers Association has said it has no objection to the test mast, some residents say it be a blot on the landscape beside the economically-important Coast to Coast path, which draws thousands of walkers to the area every year.

Kiplin and Kirkby Fleetham With Fencote parish council called on district councillors to refuse the application at their meeting on Thursday (May 23).

Source:  By Stuart Minting | The Northern Echo | 17th March 2013 | www.thenorthernecho.co.uk

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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