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Plans for Wetley Rocks turbine

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: March 24, 2014

By Leslie Jackson

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A WIND turbine with an overall height of 34.2 metres (112 feet) has been proposed in Wetley Rocks.

Carl Pointon has submitted a planning application to Staffordshire Moorlands District Council for permission to erect the structure at Woodend Farm.

A design, access and planning statement produced on behalf of the applicant by Bagshaws said the turbine would produce electricity to supply a new house and outbuildings on the site, with any surplus beingexported to the National Grid.

The planning statement said: "Approval will enable the applicant to produce electricity significantly more cheaply than the current cost of procurement.

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"A wind turbine should provide much of the power required for the substantial new dwelling at Woodend Farm, thus ensuring significant environmental and sustainable benefits by minimising the requirement for fossil fuel produced power.

"The applicant has incorporated ground source heating into the new house, and the development of the wind turbine will help him achieve his targeted objective that the property be 100 per cent powered renewable energy.

"This will be one of the first properties in the Staffordshire Moorlands to be powered without material reliance on fossil fuel, and this is seen as a key benefit of this proposal."

The proposed turbine would be sited in a field around 550 metres to the north west of Woodend Farm.

The planning statement by Bagshaws adds: "The land is away from the main homestead itself, but it has been selected following detailed pre-application consultation with the planning authority, and it is considered to be a suitable location.

"The planning officers' pre-application advice states that there appear to be only a small number of properties for which the proposal would fall within close range.

"The nearby small settlement of Wetley Rocks northward along Cheadle Road and including Folly Lane and the southern part of Ox Pasture, Cheddleton presents a larger affected community, but the impact is judged likely to be moderate by separation distances."

It is also pointed out in a summary of the application that the positive benefits of the scheme, including carbon saving and the production of renewable energy, are considered to provide the very special circumstances required to justify development in the Green Belt

The statement said: "While it is acknowledged that the proposed turbine is a relatively tall, vertical structure, the siting and topography of the landscape will help to reduce its visual impact, and great consideration has been given to the landscape aspect of this proposal, something acknowledged as a key consideration in this case."

It is expected that a decision will be made on the wind turbine by planners within the next eight to 12 weeks.

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