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Councillors narrowly pass plans for 77m wind turbine in Aylesby

Plans to erect a 77m high wind turbine in Aylesby have been approved by the council’s Planning Committee.

Despite receiving substantial objections, councillors narrowly passed the proposals by six votes to five.

The turbine is expected to have the generation capacity of up to 900kW, which should be enough to power nearly 77 homes.

One wind turbine is already in place on land west of Pyewipe Farm, which was originally built to power the farm’s grain-dryers.

But it has since emerged that the power from the turbine goes directly to the National Grid. Paul Strawson, of Pyewipe Farm, Aylesby, spoke in support of the proposals.

He said: “The supply of energy is becoming more and more topical.

“Off-sea turbines are almost twice the cost and they also affect the fishing industry.

“If the application is refused it will just send out the wrong message to those who want to invest in green energy.

“The turbine will be hidden from all homes apart from just a few, and then trees and bushes will also break up the landscape.

“There have been a lot of objections, but it accords with planning policy.”

Robert Doughty, representing Manor Farm and concerned local residents, opposed the plans.

“We have already seen the adverse effects from the first turbine,” he said. “A second would just magnify that.

“A large number of people have objected to the plans, it will only be of benefit to the developer.

“It will significantly alter the landscape and will offer very little benefit to local people.”

Councillor Matthew Patrick (Labour, Heneage), said: “I welcome green energy and in this instance, there are no real grounds for refusal.

“The only concerns are coming from local residents, but time and time again that has not been enough to turn an application down.

“I do feel concerned about the adverse effect on the landscape, but for planning that does not carry any weight.”

Andrew De Freitas (Liberal Democrat, Park) added: “I am very keen on encouraging green energy, as there is no doubt we are suffering from global warming which will have a huge impact on the UK.

“You just have to look at Holland, who are starting to embrace green energy and looking at other sources of producing power.

“It this application was for a wind farm I would say it’s not acceptable, but as a second turbine it will not be a huge blot on the landscape.”