Developers wanting to site a massive wind turbine scheme on hills above Guisborough have received a major blow to their multi million pound plans.
North-east family-owned business Banks Renewables wants to build a five-turbine, 433 foot high Bank Field wind farm on agricultural land on the north side of the A171 overlooking the town and has consulted with locals over the last year.
But now, following discussion at its planning committee, members of the North York Moors National Park Authority are urging Redcar and Cleveland Council to refuse the application.
The council’s decision is expected sometime in the New Year.
NYMNPA members say the proposed development would have “significant and harmful impacts in terms of views of important iconic landscape features and sites along the edge of the North York Moors.”
These would be, in particular, Roseberry Topping and the scarp edge of the Cleveland Hills, which form an important landscape feature of the north western boundary of the National Park.
Peter Berry, of the Fight In Guisborough to Halt Wind Turbines group (FIGHT), said campaigners are “extremely pleased”.
He said: “This confirms our belief that these enormous structures will destroy the views enjoyed by residents of and visitors to the area.
“Banks Renewables say this will be compensated by the possibility that the turbines will offset the emission of up to 22,280 tonnes of CO2 per year, contribute to national targets for greenhouse gas reduction and provide electricity for around 9,800 households.
“These claims are laudable, but would be equally achievable if the turbines were located at a more suitable brownfield site.
“They have also stated there will be a community package of £85,000 a year. But this miniscule amount squeezed from enormous profits generated by this wind farm for the developer and landowner will hardly compensate for the drop in house values for the people nearest the wind farm.
“We realise the NYMNPA recommendation is not binding on the borough council, but hope strong consideration will be given to it when its planning committee decides.”
FIGHT has already claimed the position of the turbines will destroy one of the most iconic views in the area, “particularly the view across Roseberry Topping – one of the most beautiful in England.”
Phil Dyke, Banks Renewables development director, said: “While we’re disappointed by the outcome of the National Park’s vote, we were encouraged by recognition from some delegates of the positive impact of our proposals.
“We’ll continue to work with all interested parties across the community to ensure they’re able to make up their minds about the proposed scheme based on accurate, comprehensive information.
“We remain certain this is a carefully-designed scheme sited in a wholly appropriate location for this sort of development.”
Anyone wanting more info on the proposals visit www.banksgroup.co.uk/bank-field
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