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Council turns down 77m South Molton wind turbine which has been taken to appeal

By NDJFran  |  Posted: January 16, 2014

Comments (2)

AN application for a 77-metre wind turbine near South Molton would have been turned down had the applicants not appealed against North Devon Council for non-determination.

An application was submitted by Murex Energy Limited in April 2013 for a wind turbine on land near Lower Webbery Farm in Ash Mill.

But on November 20 Murex appealed against the council for taking too long to make a decision on the application.

On the appeal form Murex stated: “Having taken into account all consultation responses received, no issues have been raised which would tip the planning balance towards refusing this application.”

It was brought before the council this month for planning committee members to determine whether they would have approved or refused the application.

Dozens of letters of objection had been submitted to the council and it was recommended for refusal by the planning officer.

Several people spoke against the application at the meeting.

Representatives from Rose Ash, Bishops Nympton and Knowstone parish councils, all of which recommended refusal, raised concerns including the size, its position in relation to nearby houses and the cumulative impact of the turbine alongside others such as the impending Batsworthy Cross wind farm.

Geoffrey Ley lives at West Port farm which lies 473 metres away from the proposed turbine.

“I am a third generation farmer and spend the majority of my time here but our family life is also spent here,” he said at the meeting.

“All our neighbours have invested large amounts of capital in making loving family homes and do not wish to see this ruined.”

Members of the planning committee also raised issues regarding the application.

Councillor Jeremy Yabsley said: “This crosses the line between small turbines well related to small businesses and those much larger that are not related to any local business.”

Jasmine Chesters said: “Normally I would support a turbine if it was to support a business or farm but this I cannot support.

“It is industrial sized and in North Devon we have done our fair share. I think it is going to ruin too many people’s lives.”

Committee members voted they would have unanimously refused the application and a planning hearing will now be held to determine the outcome of the appeal.

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  • Cynicalous  |  January 17 2014, 4:21PM

    Let's hope that the Planning Inspectorate also see sense and turn this down. How any renewables business like Murex can justify building an industrial structure of this size 473 metres away from someone's property is beyond belief. This is simply a money making machine proposed by people with zero moral fibre - they should be ashamed of themselves.

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  • PAWB46  |  January 17 2014, 3:41PM

    Not only is it a huge and useless turbine, but it would be downrated to produce less electricity but get more subsidy (known as the wind turbine scam). It would have led to yet more fuel poverty.

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