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Eric Pickles urged to stop Selby wind turbine plan  

Credit:  by James Reed, Political Correspondent | The Yorkshire Post | 17 March 2014 | www.yorkshirepost.co.uk ~~

They chose to live in the hamlet of Wistow Lordship drawn by the landscape which had barely altered in generations.

But vet Louise Davison and her family fear the building of a 60m wind turbine a few hundred metres from her home will shatter their rural idyll.

The mother-of-two and her neighbours are trying to block the building of the turbine and now Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles has become involved.

Proposals for the turbine were first set out last year and later referred to a planning inspector.

But in an unusual move the inspector will not now make the judgement but will instead offer a recommendation to Mr Pickles who will have the final say.

Last year he promised to toughen the rules on onshore wind turbines to force developers to consult communities before they ask for planning permission.

Mrs Davison, who lives in Wistow Lordship with her husband and two children, said the turbine with 52m diameter blades would be less than 400m from her home.

“The first we were aware of it was when a letter dropped through the letterbox informing us of the application. It came as a bolt from the blue.

“As you look across the broad expanse of countryside there are other turbines we can see in the distance but the immediate location they have chosen to apply for is on an expanse of flat arable land with barely an established tree.

“It is on the edge of a small hamlet of houses. There will be no missing it in any way.

“We won’t be able to escape it visually and we are all down wind of it so we won’t be able to get away from the noise.

“We have chosen to live there because it is quiet and rural. This is going to ruin the character of the area.”

The planning inspector will prepare a report and recommendation for Mr Pickles who is due to make a decision by June.

Wistow Lordship residents have banded together to hire a planning consultant to make their case.

Mrs Davison added: “I am hopeful that in view of the comments he has made in the recent past where he has stated that local residents should be taken into consideration and while renewable energy is important that shouldn’t trounce the views of local residents, that we will be listened to.

“Because we are a small community, it is always going to be hard to make ourselves heard.”

The residents of Wistow Lordship have been supported in their campaign by Selby and Ainsty MP Nigel Adams.

He said: “This turbine is simply too large and too close to homes.

“I visited Wistow Lordship early in January to see for myself the site and the proposed position of the turbine and saw that it would dominate the main view from the nearest property.

“It is now up to the Secretary of State to make the final decision, rather than a non-elected planning inspector.”

There have been 38 applications for single wind turbines in the Selby district in the last three years.

The Government set out new rules governing onshore wind turbines last year that mean developers wanting to build more than than two turbines or any turbine higher than 15m will need to consult the local community before submitting a formal planning application.

Source:  by James Reed, Political Correspondent | The Yorkshire Post | 17 March 2014 | www.yorkshirepost.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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