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Landscape group hails appeal decision to reject turbines

Landscape campaigners have hailed a decision by a planning inspector to uphold the refusal of plans for a 246-foot (75m) wind turbine in North Devon.

The area has been the subject of a large number of applications from renewable energy developers in the past two years.

The proposed 500kW turbine was designed to produce 1,500MWh of power per year on farm land at Middle Huddisford, St Woolsery.

Permission was denied by planners at Torridge District Council and last week the ruling was upheld by the planning inspectorate.

Inspector Iwan Lloyd said: “I find that the impact on character and appearance could not be made acceptable and further information is required on protected species and heritage assets.”

In a separate appeal, a 66-foot (20m) mast at Lower Hele Barn, Bradworthy was also rejected, in line with refusal by Torridge.

The inspector found that the impact on the character and appearance of the area and inadequate information on the impact on heritage assets, ecology and noise meant that the small benefit of the turbine would not outweigh the harm to the surrounding area.

A third appeal for an anaerobic digester at Great Hele Farm, South Molton was allowed, reversing an earlier decision by North Devon District Council.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) in Devon said the turbine rulings were “official recognition that developers are still trying to gain planning permission without providing adequate information”.