- National Wind Watch: Wind Energy News - https://www.wind-watch.org/news -

Thrown out: Wind turbines for Yorkshire Wolds site near Burton Agnes Hall

Controversial plans for six wind turbines at Thornholme Field in the Yorkshire Wolds have been thrown out by the Secretary of State.

Planning inspector Paul Griffiths, who chaired a public inquiry last year, had recommended approval for the 110m turbines at the site near Burton Agnes Hall.

But Communities and Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles has disagreed and dismissed the appeal for planning permission.

The move has been welcomed by campaigners and East Riding Council, which had rejected the application by Wind Prospect Developments Limited.

The council, which had previously turned down nine wind turbine applications across the East Riding only to see them overturned on appeal, says the Secretary of State’s ruling gives a glimmer of hope for the future.

Councillor Symon Fraser, planning portfolio holder at East Riding Council, said: “It is great to see the Secretary of State has supported our refusal of this application.

“It has to be said this raises a glimmer of hope in our hearts that local opinion will begin to carry more weight in the future.”

Cllr Fraser said the planning authority is obliged to consider each application on its own merits and it was not a case of rejecting every single scheme.

He said: “We were getting a bit despondent that the refusals of planning permission were continually being overturned.

“This gives us hope that in the future, where we refuse permission and have strong arguments for refusal, that will carry more weight.”

He insisted the Thornholme Field site was a sensitive location in the Yorkshire Wolds.

He said: “It’s about the impact on the landscape.

“This site in the Yorkshire Wolds was critical to the setting and surroundings of such important attractions such as Burton Agnes Hall, which sites relatively close to it.

“We were very concerned about it. If this application had been allowed, it would have become increasingly difficult to have defended what so many people hold as a very precious landscape in the Yorkshire Wolds.”

Objector Susan Burt, of Burton Agnes, said: “This was always the wrong development in the wrong place.

“Eric Pickles has overturned the recommendation of the inspector and recognised the importance of our landscape, our heritage, tourism, the impact on ordinary people in their homes, and the adverse cumulative impact of the multiple wind farms in the area – which we have argued all along.

“It would be the icing on the cake if Mr Pickles’ decision were to deter future applications of this nature in our Wolds landscape.”

In his judgement, the Secretary of State considered “the landscape would suffer harm through its sensitivity to wind turbine development”.

He found the turbines would be “a distracting modern, discordant presence in views” from Burton Agnes Hall.

He also shared English Heritage’s view that the proposal would cause harm to the setting of many heritage assets, including Rudston Beacon.

He found the inspector had placed less weight on the issue of harm than was required.