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Wind turbine plan for Addingham rejected by government planning inspector

Objectors to wind turbines proposed for a farm at Addingham are celebrating after they were rejected by a government planning inspector.

The two 121ft (37m) high turbines planned for Chelker House Farm were refused planning permission by Bradford Council in August last year.

The decision has now been upheld on appeal to the Planning Inspectorate because of the harm to the greenbelt and to the setting of historical assets at Bolton Abbey.

Government inspector, Philip Major, agreed with Historic England that there was ‘insufficient evidence’ to show the turbines would not be visible from the nationally significant heritage assets at Bolton Abbey.

Mr Major, who viewed the proposed site from paths at the Bolton Abbey estate, said: “On balance, I think it likely they would be visible and this would be harmful to the setting because of the intrusion into views associated with the cultural significance of the assets.”

He added that the turbines would however be in ‘full view’ of grade two listed cottage Low Sanfitt.

“The significance of the building is in its historic relationship with the landscape as a small rural dwelling. This relationship would be impaired, though not substantial in heritage terms.”

Mr Major noted that the turbines had received ‘some support’ from Addingham Parish Council, but much opposition from nearby residents, from Addingham Civic Society, and from Draughton Parish Council.

And he disagreed with the view of appellant, Charles Ashton, that Addingham Parish Council represented the community, adding it was ‘simplistic’.

In conclusion, Mr Major said there would be substantial harm to the greenbelt, significant harm to the landscape and considerable harm to the setting of heritage assets, all of which outweighed any benefits of the scheme.

Holly Flather, of Low Sanfitt, said: “I agree wholeheartedly with the inspector’s views that these turbines would have not only intruded into the rural setting of our home, but would have harmed our beautiful landscape, loved by so many.

I am delighted that the right decision has been made. It would have been totally inappropriate for these two wind turbines to be erected in this location and I am thrilled for the communities of Addingham, Draughton and beyond – we can now get on with enjoying our beautiful countryside.”