Plans to install two 46m high wind turbines in Barnard Castle have been met with fierce opposition over fears they would cause a “devastating” impact on the landscape.
Durham County Council’s Planning Committee will meet at County Hall, in Durham, tomorrow (September 6) to discuss the two applications recommended for refusal by a senior planning officer.
Mark Thompson and Andrew Thompson are seeking permission to construct the turbines on agricultural land at Punder Gill Farm, south of the A66 and to the west of Rutherford Lane.
Dozens of letters of objection have been received by the council, with residents raising concerns over residential amenity, highway safety and visual impact.
Objections have also been made by Bowes Parish Council, Rokeby, Brignall and Eggleston Abbey Parish Council, North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), Bowes Museum and South Teesdale Action Group.
However, the National Farmers Union have backed the application, stating that the development is important to enable the farm business to remain profitable.
While no previous applications for wind turbines have been made on the site, an application to install a wind turbine at nearby Hulands Quarry was previously refused.
Bowes Parish Council argue the circumstances have not changed.
The parish council also said: “The harmful impacts of the development outweigh the limited renewable energy benefits. Concerns are expressed that a precedent may be set.
“The application fails to recognise that the site is located within an Area of High Landscape Value or that the turbine would be visible from the AONB.”
In a statement submitted with the application, the applicants said: “The proposed site lies next to the busy A66 in a pleasant landscape but one that has no national designation that makes it special or gives it greater protection.
“The AONB and Yorkshire Dales National Park lie some distance away and impacts here are deemed to be low or negligible.
“The proposed scheme will bring benefits to the area, generating renewable electricity, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and helping to address the effects of climate change as well as bring investment to the area and as well as work for local contractors.
“We feel the concerns raised by residents have been satisfactorily addressed.”
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