Controversial plans to build a giant wind turbine in the Shropshire countryside, which had attracted almost 200 objections, have been refused.
Planning officers at Shropshire Council ruled the proposed 327ft (99.7m) turbine in Tetchill, near Ellesmere, would have a severe impact on the surrounding area, outweighing any potential benefits.
The news has been greeted with delight by Lincoln McMullan, chairman of Ellesmere Chamber of Commerce, who said he believed most of the town would be thrilled.
The plans were initially met with anger from local people who believed it would create an eyesore and a potential distraction for motorists.
Shropshire Council received 198 letters of objection to the plans submitted by Intech Clean Energy compared to 36 supporting them. Tim Rogers, planning officer at the council, said the harm caused by the turbine would outweigh the benefits of harnessing renewable energy.
He said that the proposed turbine would have a “detrimental impact upon the character and quality of this countryside location” and that it would become a “detrimental defining characteristic of the area”.
Mr McMullan said: “I am very pleased, and I am sure that the whole town is just as happy about it. They could go to appeal. But it is just too big to dominate the area.”
He had also raised concerns about its location close to a site earmarked for a development of 250 homes, a leisure complex and marina.
The application was submitted in April on behalf of local farming family firm Seven Sisters and claimed the turbine could generate 1,400MWh of energy each year – enough to power 280 homes a year.
Speaking earlier this year, Angela Williams, 62, who owns the cattle farming business with husband Robert, 70, said they would be forced to go to appeal because of the size of investment. The Williams family has 28 days to appeal.
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