Both sides urge Wiltshire turbine debate
2:00pm Saturday 27th October 2012 in By Chris Melvin
Campaigners on both sides of the debate about wind farms in Wiltshire have urged the public to make their views known ahead of the deadline for comments on changes to planning rules.
Wiltshire Council is consulting on an amendment to its Core Strategy, the document framing development policy for the next 15 years, which would see minimum distances between homes and turbines come into effect.
The new rules would impose a minimum distance of 1.5km from homes for turbines higher than 50m, 2km for those more than 100m, and 3km for 150m turbines.
Campaigners for the amendment argue it would safeguard homes and residents from ugly and noisy turbines, but those against it say the plan would make it impossible to put turbines anywhere in the county.
Judy Glasson, of Stop Grange Farm Wind Farm’s campaigning against a three-turbine proposal for West Ashton, said: “If you get these three that’s just the start in Wiltshire. They’ll be everywhere.
"The distance being proposed for turbines of this size is 2km. If that goes through, then these giant turbines just won’t happen.
“It’s very important that we get people to write in, that we get people motivated. “We just need this to get through. It’s being proposed by the council, but it needs to go to public scrutiny.”
Rowena Quantrill, of Climate Friendly Bradford on Avon, said: “I feel strongly that the current regulations are adequate for each application to be judged on its merits.
"This issue isn’t just about Grange Farm, it’s about wind turbines across Wiltshire.
“It seems very unfair to support this amendment so that other communities don’t have a choice.
“[The amendment] would mean it would basically be impossible to put any wind turbines of any size anywhere in the county.
“It seems very unfair for communities who may want a wind turbine. I think it’s very short-sighted.”
All the consultation documents can be commented on at www.wiltshire.gov.uk or at Wiltshire Council’s public libraries.
Subject to the weather and approval from the Civil Aviation Authority, SGFWF plans to fly a blimp at 130m on land at West Ashton this weekend, in order to demonstrate the height of the proposed turbines.
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