Budweiser want 450-ft high beer advert on wind turbine but opponents say it could distract motorists
A Budweiser advert could still be displayed at the top of a 150-metre high wind turbine on the Gwent Levels near Newport if a planning appeal is successful.
The contentious turbine, recently granted planning permission to be 20-metres taller than originally planned, will be built on a field off Rush Wall Lane near Redwick to provide renewable energy for the Magor brewery.
But while the turbine has won approval, a plan to display the logo of the brewery’s flagship brand, Budweiser, at the top of the vertical structure has been refused by Newport council planners.
In its reasons for refusal, Newport Council said: “Through its scale, prominence and incongruous appearance in a rural location, the proposal would have an adverse impact on rural character, landscape quality, wider visual amenity and would fail to contribute positively to the Caldicot Levels Special Landscape Area.”
Redwick Community Council also objected to the “unnecessary” advert and said it would be “unsafe” as it could distract motorists on the A4810.
But an appeal has now been lodged to the planning inspectorate in a bid to overturn the city council decision.
Under the plan, the logo would be displayed on both sides of the turbine’s hub which is 82 metres high, with a width of 1.4 metres and height of 4.5 metres.
The advertisement would read ‘Budweiser’ in white text on a red background.
“The display would portray the brewery’s flagship brand’s logo [Budweiser],” a grounds of appeal statement said.
“It will serve as a reminder to the community and other businesses, that sourcing clean renewable energy is not only possible, but also financially viable, and critically important in the fight against climate change.
“Without the brewery’s involvement, the turbine project would not have been realised, and thus this advertisement application for the brewery is intrinsically linked to the renewable generation that will result.”
The appeal argues the Budweiser logo would have “minimal intrusive visibility” and that it would be “unlikely to draw unwanted attention from passers-by to an unacceptable extent. With a backdrop of clearly distinguishable large scale pylons, industrial buildings and other large scale turbines, the landscape impact of a small sign atop such a large structure cannot be considered unacceptable,” it adds.
A Newport council planning report described it as “a large high level advert”.
“The benefit is the publicity for a business located away from the site that does need to have an advert in this location to support its commercial competitiveness,” it said.
“In short there is nothing to outweigh the visual harm and rural character; unlike the turbine.”
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