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Marching against the turbines

A march on Saturday, 12 July, from the Westwood to County Hall, in Beverley, is taking place as a result of deep concerns from East Riding residents about the growing number of wind turbines and the significant changes they are making to the landscape.

Driffield counncillor Symon Fraser, East Riding Portfolio Holder for Environment, Housing and Planning, wants to assure residents that East Riding of Yorkshire Councillors share these concerns.

However much the ERYC may support the drive to generate electricity using renewable resources, it is perfectly legitimate for the authority and the residents to care about the core rural character of the East Riding.

Coun Fraser said: “The growing and increasing industrialisation of the countryside by the continuing march of these monsters is a concern.

“People need to be aware that the approach which the ERYC must take as the Local Planning Authority is set by Government and must be fundamentally positive and enabling. Right from the outset, the Government requires Authorities to welcome renewable energy. This is understandable and fits with the Government’s own statutory requirement to source 15 percent of the nation’s energy from renewables by 2020.

Coun Fraser added: Having said the above, the ERYC has tried to reflect local opinion in its planning decisions. Many times this has resulted in our planning committees refusing such developments. Past experience sees these refusals taken to appeal by the applicants and, sadly, local refusals have been all too frequently overturned by the Government’s Planning Inspectorate or by previous Secretaries of State. These battles take place at some considerable cost to local council tax payers. So, East Riding of Yorkshire Council stands proud in its efforts to defend and protect our landscape.”

“The marchers should be clear that East Riding of Yorkshire Council is their ally in this fight and not their enemy. The ERYC shares their wish to see the East Riding landscape and villages safeguarded – it could be said that the proper place to march would be the Planning Inspectorate in Bristol, the Government body which has over-ruled local refusal decisions with alarming regularity.”