An application for two wind turbines that objectors said would ‘destroy the gateway to the South Hams’ has been refused.
South Hams Council turned down the proposal for two 46 metre tall turbines on land in Stone Farm, Ugborough.
The council gave a number reasons for its refusal including harmful visual and landscape impacts and additional danger to road users.
In the decision notice issued by the council, it said: ‘The proposed wind turbines at Stone Farm would result in harmful visual and landscape impacts within a rural and tranquil area and, in such close proximity to the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and Dartmoor National Park.
‘It would have a potential substantially harmful impact on heritage assets and their settings, given the number, proximity and significance of local heritage assets and their settings.
‘The proposed turbines are considered to have a significantly harmful impact on the amenity enjoyed by the neighbouring occupiers of Higher Well Farm, due to their proximity and elevated position in relation to the farm.
‘The proposed development would result in additional danger to all users of the highway network due to the manoeuvring required by vehicles, lack of visibility, inadequate width and gradient of the access resulting in congestion, and the proximity of the second turbine to the highway.’
The application had around 160 letters of objection sumitted by residents, the surrounding parish councils and the highway authority.
During the consultation process, resident Richard Dix said: ‘The proposed sites for two 50kW wind turbines is just south of Kitterford Cross on the B3196. Namely the major tourist route for Modbury, Dartmouth, Bigbury, Salcombe, Thurlestone, and Kingsbridge as approached from the A38 and thus an important gateway into the South Hams.
‘Their presence would have a significant, overpowering visual impact on the currently beautiful uninterrupted skyline.
‘The experience of arriving into this scenic part of Devon would be ruined by the effect of these turbines.
‘The very close proximity to the B3196 is also a concern.
‘This is a very narrow road – especially near the proposed site, where there are few passing places.’
Ugborough Parish Council objected to the application with concerns over its excessive height and prominent location, resulting in an ‘adverse effect on the landscape, affects the setting of the church, a listed building and the proximity to a busy road and crossroads at Kitterford Cross’, causing a distraction.
The highway authority said in principle it has no objection to two wind turbines in the location, however it recommended refusal saying there is insufficient information with the planning application in order for the authority to be satisfied.
The authority said: ‘The geometry of the access as proposed is likely to result in unacceptable manoeuvring on the highway, with consequent risk of additional danger to all users of the road.
‘The inadequate width of the access is likely to cause congestion, with consequent risk of additional danger to all users of the road.
‘The proposed second turbine is too close to the public highway and the gradient of the access would likely result in additional danger.’
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