The Secretary of State will decide upon a planning appeal by a power company against the rejection of its plans for a wind turbine in Stone.
Hallmark Power’s application for a 272-metre turbine near Cotwalton Road, Cotwalton, was refused unanimously by Stafford Borough Council’s planning committee in May 2014.
It was the firm’s second attempt to get permission; an earlier application for two wind turbines at the site was rejected in November 2013.
Stone MP Sir Bill Cash wrote to the Secretary of State Greg Clark MP, to request that he recover the latest planning appeal.
Now Minister for Local Government Marcus Jones MP has confirmed the Secretary of State will be ruling on Hallmark Power’s appeal.
In a letter to Sir Bill, Mr Jones wrote: “Following your request to Rt Hon Greg Clark in May, I am writing to let you know that I have decided to recover the above appeal, as I think that the issues it raises are such that the appeal should be determined by the Secretary of State. The Planning Inspectorate has been asked to take the necessary action to inform the appeal parties.
“I am sure you will understand that I cannot make any comment on the merits of the appeal as I must not prejudice consideration of the Inspector’s report in due course. I should also add that recovery of the appeal cannot be seen as an indicator to the way it will ultimately be decided – the decision will be taken on the facts of the case.”
A final comments statement on behalf of Hallmark Power regarding the appeal said residents formed an action group which gathered more than 200 objections and a 1,800-signature petition. But the statement added that only 48 letters were received objecting, some of which were from the same address and that equated to only 2.4 per cent of the original opposition. The statement added: “The appellants consider this level of opposition is not overwhelming.”
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