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Residents object to windfarm plans on land near Newtown

Residents have set up a group to mount their opposition to a proposed new windfarm.

Montgomeryshire Against Pylons has been set up to oppose a new 22-turbine windfarm proposed by EDF Renewables on land at Garn Fach near Newtown with plans to be submitted and to and decided on by the Welsh Government later this year.

The group has described the plans as a “grotesque intrusion, act of vandalism on a massive scale and scar on one of the most famous, populated and beautiful valleys in Wales”.

EDF Renewables’ proposal for south Montgomeryshire and north Radnorshire is likely to consist of turbines, producing around five mega watts – enough to power about 66,000 households.

Ahead of submitting a planning application for the wind farm between Llandinam and Bwlch-Y-Sarnau, EDF has been carrying out ecological and other feasibility surveys.

The company has also said it will set up a community benefit fund which could be worth £550,000 per year – or more than £16.5 million over the course of the 30-year project.

Mark Vyvyan- Robinson, director of development and investments, said: “Garn Fach would make a positive contribution to our efforts to tackle climate change, as well as delivering benefits to the community. We are pleased to be developing Garn Fach in partnership with 14 local farming families and hope that the wind farm will be seen as an asset in the community.”

But the community group set up against the plans dispute some of these proposals, and outlined its objections in a letter which to the County Times.

The group warns the application overlooks protests against pylons, and the ban on onshore windfarms in England.

It also does not provide for how the electricity would be moved to the grid, creating the potential for new pylons in the Severn Valley.

Its position is on land that was previously refused for a windfarm in 2015 because of its impact on the landscape.

And information days were announced far to close to when they were held, allowing people no time to have their say.

The spokesman added: “It was a pure exercise in box-ticking. This was a blatant example of a multinational energy juggernaut steamrollering over the wishes of the local people in Wales.”