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Survey gives thumbs down to wind turbines

A new survey suggests there is strong opposition to the idea of installing wind turbines on Brown Clee.

This follows a survey conducted by Councillor Robert Tindall and Ludlow MP Philip Dunne.

They say that 445 residents of the Brown Clee area, 16% of all adults who live in the electoral division, responded to the survey.

Of these almost two thirds (64%) were against or strongly against wind turbine development, compared to fewer than one in five (17%) who were in favour or strongly in favour of it.

Nearly four times as many local residents who took part in the survey oppose wind turbines as approve.

The results also indicated worries about proliferation of turbines, with 68% concerned that approval of current applications would lead to more development in the future.

“Cllr Robert Tindall and I undertook this survey to get a sense of how local people felt on a wide range of issues,” said Mr Dunne.

“But our results clearly indicated strong opposition to wind development in the Brown Clee area, and there are particular concerns about proliferation of wind turbine development.

“These developments can affect local landscapes for years to come, and one only has to look over the border in mid-Wales to see how wind turbine proliferation can blight an area.

“Given that enough projects are in the pipeline to meet Britain’s renewable energy obligations, I believe any decision on local wind development should take into account the views of the local community, as well as issues such as landscape, heritage and ecology.”

Robert Tindall, Shropshire councillor for Brown Clee ward, believes it is an issue that provokes strong opinions.

“Wind turbine development is something local residents in Brown Clee feel very strongly about, which was reflected in our survey results,” he said.

“The local planning committee has shown it is responsive to local concerns about wind turbines in recent decisions, and I hope it will continue to take a robust view on remaining applications in my ward.

“The survey was also particularly revealing about the lack of reliable mobile phone signal and broadband in the area. More than half of those who responded said they had poor or no mobile phone signal, and almost two thirds said their broadband speeds were either slow or very slow.

“We have already written to Arqiva, responsible for delivering the Government’s Mobile Infrastructure Project, to ask what steps are being taken locally to improve mobile signal for residents, and will be feeding in our results to Shropshire Council’s Connecting Shropshire broadband programme.”