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Giant wind turbine to be built in Holsworthy after campaigners lose battle

A giant wind turbine for Holsworthy has been approved at appeal by the planning inspectorate.

The 77-metre high machine is due to be built on land at Youldon, Sutcombe near Holsworthy.

The appeal was made by Mr W J Watkins against Torridge District Council who had previously refused planning permission.

This month planning inspector Alan Novitzky said the appeal was allowed and planning permission was granted.

In his report Mr Novitzky said: “Being sited near the high point of a landscape ridge, the proposed turbine assembly has the potential to be visible from public viewpoints up to a distance of some 1.5km to 2km.

“However, having regard to the existing effect of the electricity line and pylons, the local effect on visual amenity would be only moderately harmful.

“Harm to the fabric of the landscape would not be material because of the limited footprint of the turbine and the short access track.”

Grade two listed buildings in the vicinity of the turbine site would not be harmed, according to the inspector.

He said: “The Church of the Holy Trinity at Milton Damerel, Grade II listed, is some 2.25km to the south of the site.

“Mature trees surrounding the churchyard might well block views of the turbine.

“In views from the south, the church would appear in a small group of buildings amongst trees, on a gently rounded hill.”

In his conclusion Mr Novitzky said: “The public benefits of the proposal comprise the environmental effects of the production of renewable energy and the consequent reduction in carbon emissions.

“The appellant suggests that the turbine would be capable of satisfying the electricity demands of some 350 dwellings or more.” Phillip Bratby, a spokesman for the Campaign to Protect Rural England, said the group was disappointed with the inspectorate’s decision.

He said: “There are now 320 wind turbines throughout Devon, either operational, permitted or in the planning process, with 118 of them in the Torridge district alone.

“Torridge has far more than any other part of the county. In fact there are so many in the Holsworthy area that it is now resembling one giant unplanned wind farm.”

The Journal tried to contact Mr Watkins but he was not available for comment.