August 24, 2015

Battle over Doncaster village wind turbines

The Epworth Bells | 24 August 2015 |

Almost 150 people are calling for controversial plans to set up wind turbines near a rural Doncaster village to be ditched.

A total of 145 letters have been sent in to Doncaster Council by opponents of the scheme, which would see two wind turbines set up at Greengate Road and Whitelea Road between Norton village and the Barnsdale Bar junction with the A1.

A total of 154 representations were made.

Nine of those support the proposal because it would provide green energy and also put profits into projects to benefit the local community.

The scheme is due to go before Doncaster Council’s planning committee tomorrow for a decision on planning permission.

The application involves the construction of two wind turbines, each generating 2.5 MW of power, with 80m tall towers and 40m blades.

If the scheme gets the go-ahead, it would be connected to a community company with which local residents can get involved, with profits invested in the community of Norton.

The majority opposing the scheme, are concerned that the turbines will dominate the skyline, cause harm to wildlife, and impact on nearby homes and Campsmount School through noise and shadow flicker.

A vote in the village in 2012 came out against the scheme.

There have also been objections to the plans from Norton Parish Council, Askern Town Council, Burghwallis Parish Council and Kirk Smeaton Parish Council,and the Woodland Trust, which says there would be direct loss and damage to ancient woodland at White Ley Plantation.

The National Air Traffic Service and Robin Hood Airport also raised objections to the original proposal.

But since then the developer, Origin Energy, has entered into negotiations with both over a legal agreement which would involve them putting in place measures to overcome radar interference and clutter.

Council officers are recommending that the scheme is granted planning permission, but in a report they have suggested putting in place conditions including measures to protect radar, minimise any flicker, and to restrict any harm to the nearby woods when workers build the access routes to the turbines.

The report said consultations undertaken by Origin before it lodged its planning application had revealed the majority of respondents in the area were either supportive of the scheme or not against the proposal.

But it added: “This covered the parish area of Norton and consisted of a questionnaire.

“However other surveys conducted at the time of the pre-application organised by local councillors and the Parish Council showed opposition.”

“Additionally, a local protest group known as ‘NoNow’ has been formed in the locality and has been campaigning against the proposal.”

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