Jon Robinson, Deputy News Editor | Lancashire Telegraph | www.lancashiretelegraph.co.uk
Campaigners are celebrating after a controversial plan for three new wind turbines was withdrawn a day before a final decision was due.
Applicant Viridis Wind Turbines wanted to erect the 77-metre high structures on Hoddlesden Moss.
Blackburn with Darwen Council’s planning officers had recommended the proposal for refusal and it was due to be debated at a meeting last night.
However the plan, which had attracted almost 1,400 objections, was withdrawn from the planning process.
Planners had received 904 letters and a 387 signature petition against the plan as well as 556 letters of support.
Cllr Julie Slater, who represents the East Rural Ward on the council, said: “I was pleased and excited when the planning officer called me to tell me the news.
“However I do have concerns that the application will return in the future.
“I wish it had gone to the meeting so the council could formally reject it.
“If the plan ever comes back then it will be met by the same level of opposition.
“There was a large fire in the area the other night and I am worried that if a future application is approved and another blaze happens then the turbines and cables underground would make it worse.
“I think the applicant would be very silly to come back to the council with the same proposal.”
The area was named a Site of Special Scientific Interest by Natural England last year due to its rare breeding birds and peatlands.
The RSPB had formally objected to the plans submitted in July as it could have posed a serious threat to wildlife and moorland habitat.
Viridis Wind Turbines said in its plans: “The proposed energy converters would have a tip height of 76.5m with a hub height of 46m.
“The site has a very good wind speed resource.”
When recommending councillors refused the plan, officers said the proposal would have an ‘unacceptable impact’ on the ecological interests of the area.
Similar plans from the same applicant were lodged in 2015, which received around 400 objections, were rejected.
Matthew Jackson, of Viridis Wind Turbines, was unavailable for comment.
Dentist Adam Nulty, of Higher Aushaw Farm, lives in the property closest to the proposed development.
In a letter to the council he had said the turbines would be ‘unacceptably close’.
URL to article: https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2017/04/29/joy-as-hoddlesden-moss-wind-turbines-plan-withdrawn-at-11th-hour/