The Derry City and Strabane District Council have backed a decision to refuse planning permission for a new wind farm comprising of seven large turbines.
The applicant, RES UK and Ireland, had hoped to construct Barr Cregg Wind Farm in the townlands of Barr Cregg Ballymaclanigan and Slaughtmanus near Claudy in Co. Derry.
Each of the seven turbines would measure 125 metres (410 feet) in height.
The application came before a meeting of the council’s Planning Committee held in Strabane yesterday afternoon.
The meeting heard that while 134 objections had been lodged against the application, 338 letters of support had also been received in favour of the application going ahead.
However, a planning officer told the meeting that they were of the opinion to refuse the application, due to a number of reasons, including the impact the wind farm would have on the surrounding environment.
The meeting was told that the ‘detrimental’ effects of the farm outweighed any ‘economic advantage’ it offered.
The DUP’s Hilary McClintock then asked for a deferral on the decision being issued, which was supported by the SDLP.
A representative of RES then told the meeting that they had not been given the chance to address the planners’ concerns over ‘insufficient information’.
A senior planner then told the meeting that they were not seeking any further information from the client.
The deferral then went to a vote, with the three SDLP councillors and two DUP councillors present voting in favour of it, but it failed after the six Sinn Fein members in attendance voted against it.
The refusal was then issued after the six Sinn Fein councillors voted in favour of it, which was the majority vote.
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