The firm behind a controversial scheme to build a wind farm has submitted an application to prevent its planning permission from lapsing.
Infinis Energy Services said it wants Hambleton District Council to allow it to change numerous conditions in the planning permission it gained in 2010 – to build four 132-metre-high turbines at Bullamoor, near Northallerton – to allow preliminary construction work to get underway before the expiry of the permission in December.
It said amendments to the wording of conditions needed to include those relating to notifying the Ministry of Defence, ice formation prevention, the storage of potentially polluting goods, mitigating shadow flicker on radar and noise monitoring.
It is understood the firm does not intend to complete the building the turbines, which generated 99 letters of objection and 129 in support of the scheme five years ago, immediately if permission for the changes are granted.
A spokesman for Infinis said: “As with all development activity it is very difficult to determine a precise date for completion of construction at the outset, because it is dependent on numerous variables, such as availability of construction personnel, deliveries of materials, and not least the weather.”
A meeting of Osmotherley Parish Council, which opposed the plan in 2010, heard the application featured “a total lack of details” and there was no mention of progress over how the firm would overcome Ministry of Defence (MoD) concerns that the turbines could have an impact on both military and civilian aircraft.
A spokesman for the council said: “As well as the fact that this document is devoid of detail, members and those residents present remain totally committed to refuse any application which will have an adverse effect on the amenity value of this quiet valley already despoiled by the National Grid power line erected some 12 years ago.”
Residents of villages surrounding the site said if the application was granted it would lead to further uncertainty over the area’s future.
In a letter to the district council objecting to the planning conditions changes, Robert Birch, of Stokesley Road, Brompton, said the developers had had four years to sort out many of the conditions and were only seeking changes because the permission is approaching time expiry.
He said the council should be wary of allowing a foot in the door approach.
Mr Birch said: “These variations represent a huge relaxation of conditions that the council sensibly applied to safeguard residents and other interested parties, crucially, before development commenced.”
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