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Plans for two wind turbines are recommended for refusal

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: July 17, 2014

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Plans to erect two wind turbines in the Staffordshire Moorlands have been recommended for refusal by planning officers.

The planning applications are for a 82 feet to blade tip turbine at Ballington Grange, Lowe Hill, Leek, and a 113 feet to blade tip turbine at Crowgutter Farm, Park Lane, Ipstones.

Both applications will now go before the Staffordshire Moorlands Districts Council's planning applications committee this Thursday, July 17, for a final decision. In a planning report to councillors the applicant for the Ballington Grange application said the site had been chosen with regard to the landscape and there would be no detriment to ecology.

Leek Town Council has recommended that the application be refused. There have also been 12 letters of objections stating it would cause intrusion and incongruity in the landscape; would be seen all around Leek; make dramatic alterations to character both nearby and for important vantage points and that it would have a negligible contribution to renewable energy."

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In recommending refusal planning officer Arne Swithenbank said: "The proposed development, by reason of its form, scale and prominence will give rise to unacceptable harm to landscape character and unacceptable visual impact with additional cumulative harm detrimental to the character and visual amenity of the landscape including adverse cumulative significance for the setting of Leek."

The applicant for the Ipstones turbine predicts that it would generate 220kWh per annum, and would produce electricity equalling the typical consumption of 54 houses.

It is stated that the electricity consumption for the farm is "considerable" with the milking of 250 cows daily.

However Ipstones Parish Council and the National Air Traffic Services, along with 15 letters of objections, have opposed the scheme.

The parish council states the proposal is considered an eyesore over a wide area; detrimental to wildlife and not in the public interest."

In recommending refusal Mr Swithenbank said: "The proposed development would have an harmful impact on the effective operation of equipment operated by the National Air Traffic Control."

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