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Protesters win legal fight to stop wind turbine in Northamptonshire village

Protesters have today won a legal battle to stop a wind turbine being erected in a Northamptonshire village.

During a High Court hearing, deputy judge John Howell QC quashed the plan for Poplars Farm in Wappenham because he said the contribution it would make to fighting climate change would be too small to make up for the damage it would do to the landscape.

Permission for the 60 metre high turbine – which reached 86.45 metres to the tip of its blade – had been granted last July to farm owner Aidan Jones by the Government after the South Northamptonshire Council did not decide his application in time.

Inspector John Braithwaite gave the go-ahead for the wind turbine for a period of 25 years after ruling that the environmental benefits of renewable energy would outweigh any harm caused to the landscape and heritage assets in the area.

But, after protests led by Jane Mordue, chair of the Wappenham Wind Turbine Action Group, and the local council, Judge Howell said: “The inspector failed to give reasons demonstrating that he had given considerable weight to the harm to the setting of each of the listed buildings that he wound would be harmed to some extent by the proposed development.”

Mr Braithwaite agreed that it would cause “more than negligible but less than substantial harm” to the Grade 11 listed Church of St. Mary.

He also said: “The turbine would have a “significant adverse effect on the character of the landscape up to a distance of 0.5 km, and a moderate impact up to 1km.”