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Craven Council strengthens its opposition to Brightenber wind turbine plan

Craven District Council has added to its opposition towards the siting of wind turbines near Gargrave following a shift in government policy towards onshore wind projects.

A ministerial statement, confirming the ending of subsidies paid to wind energy companies in April next year, was made the day after the conclusion of a public hearing to decide the building of three 328ft (100m) turbines at Brightenber Hill.

The statement on local planning added wind farms should be built on land identified for the purpose and should have the backing of the community.

Estelle Dehon, barrister acting for the council, in her written submission to the Planning Inspectorate, said it was clear from the resumed inquiry hearing the proposal by EnergieKontor UK did not have the support of the community.

She added: “The planning impacts identified by the affected local community have not been satisfactorily addressed by the proposed development, in that the impact on the residential amenity of the Coates family at Ash Tree Farm remains so severe the farm would become an unattractive place to live and work.

“The Coates family would have little respite from the presence of wind turbines and their enjoyment of their place of residence would be significantly undermined.”

s Dehon added it was the council’s belief it was exactly such situations the ministerial statement was aimed at avoiding.

“It is clear the proposed development is not acceptable in light of this guidance, and the inspector is asked to take this into account as another reason for dismissing the appeal.”

The two-day hearing into the resumed inquiry, which was held following the quashing of the second appeal for the site, heard evidence from appellants EnergieKontor, Craven District Council, Friends of Craven Landscape, and the two farming families closest to the site.

EK argued the current application for three turbines should be allowed as it had addressed the main issue of the first refused appeal by removing two turbines closest to Ash Tree Farm.