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Bernard Matthews wind turbine refused

Plans for a single wind turbine at a poultry farm have been turned down due to the detrimental impact it would have on the landscape.

Anti-windfarm campaigners turned out to hear East Lindsey District Council’s planning committee refuse plans at Causeway Bridge Farm on Church Lane in Manby.

Bernard Matthews Wind Energy Cooperative Limited want to build a single 78metre high 500kw turbine close to the farm’s poultry sheds.

A substation would have also been built and alterations made to a pond and access track.

The wind turbine would be around 2km away from the recently approved wind farm at Gayton le Marsh.

The committee heard there were over 300 letters of objection.

Grimoldby resident, Mike Starsmore said: “East Lindsey is faced with a huge number of applications the cumulative effect of these is disastrous to the landscape and tourism. They are totally detrimental to the area.”

He also objected to the removal of a tree on Church Lane for the access route and did not believe the turbine would simply get removed after its 25 year life span.

He also suggested that the approval of a single turbine could set a precedent for a larger commercial development.

John Malone from Bernard Matthews Wind Energy Cooperative said there had been no objections from statutory consultees and that there were over 90 letters of support.

The wind turbine would be owned by the public through a co-operative which would have ensured the economic benefit from the turbine can remain in the local area.

Mr Malone added: “There will be a significant benefit to East Lindsey district through the project. We estimate that £2.5million will be raised for cooperative members over the life of the project.

“There will also be a community fund to help local projects. The social and economic benefits outweigh the reasons for refusal.”

Ward Councillor Terry Knowles suggested that the letters of support were not from local people.

He said: ““I just hope there are not people on the fringe out there using my villages and the lives of my electorate as a battle ground.

“My primary concern is for the people affected by this application. The people of Grimoldby and Manby don’t want it, the parish council don’t want it and I do not it.”

Councillor Hazel Newcombe said: “I believe the people in the area have the right to a say in their environment and they should have a say in how their future evolves.”

Councillor Laura Stephenson said she found only two letters of support from local people.

Chairman of the committee, Councillor Neil Cooper, noted from site photos that there are arge open skies and a flat landscape.

He said it would have a detrimental effect on the long views towards the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the distinctive local character.

The application was refused by 10 votes with only Councillor Phil Kemp in favour. Councillor Steve O’Dare abstained from voting.