September 5, 2013

Headon: Turbine turned down

Guardian | 05/09/2013 |

Councillors voted overwhelmingly to reject a wind turbine in Headon, despite officer recommendations.

Just a single member of Bassetlaw District council’s planning committee voted to approve the application, which would have been the applicant’s second turbine in the same field.

Citing the cumulative effect of turbines – the proposed generator would be the fourth in the area – councillors refused to sanction what they described as a ‘wind farm by stealth.’

The lie of the land was also taken into consideration, with the proposed turbine being visible from all directions.

Speaking in opposition to the turbine, local resident Mrs Harvey told councillors that feeling in the village was “higher than it had ever been” against the application.

She added: “They know a wind farm won’t be approved, so they do it one by one.”

“This would be the third turbine to be built within 300m, how is this not a wind farm?”

Doubts were also cast over noise assessments, which claimed the turbine would not be a nuisance at a distance of over 115m.

The proposed site would be the second within 250m of a house in the village.

Councillor Dave Challinor raised the issue of how a wind farm is defined, as there is no numerical definition in law.

Councillor Graham Oxby suggested that further applications would follow if the turbine was approved.

He added: “This is beginning to look like a consecutive process.”

“In my opinion it looks like they’re trying to build a wind farm, and every couple of months could be back with another one.”

The proposed turbine at Headon would have been 24m tall, 6m smaller than originally planned after residents voiced their concerns.

The application stated that construction of the turbine would create jobs for local people, while excess energy generated would have been sold to the National Grid.

However, Coun Oxby disputed the amount of energy generated by an individual turbine, adding: “A little windmill in a field wouldn’t make a great deal of difference.”

The turbine would have remained in place for the next 25 years before being decommissioned and subsequently deconstructed, with some councillors concerned about the cost of returning the land to its current condition.

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