Battle lines drawn over Chulmleigh turbine

11:43 16 October 2012

Work appears to have started on a single wind turbine development at Mounticombe Farm, near Chulmleigh.

Work appears to have started on a single wind turbine development at Mounticombe Farm, near Chulmleigh.

Archant

Work starts on 112ft farm turbine ahead of planning consent.

WORK has started on a controversial wind turbine development near Chulmleigh before being given the go-ahead by council planners.

The application for a 35-metre generator at Mounticombe Farm is not set to be determined by North Devon Council’s planning committee until November 7.

But in a move that has angered some local residents, preparatory work has already been carried out at the organic family-owned dairy farm.

Keith Marriott, who lives in Chawleigh, told the Gazette that foundations and a concrete access track had been laid in the last couple of weeks.

“It feels as though they are flouting the whole democratic planning process and by doing so they are treating the parish council and neighbours with a high degree of distain,” he said.

“Parish councils at Lapford, Chawleigh and Chulmleigh represent some 3,000 residents and all have recommended refusal. I understand there are around 150 written objections to this proposal.”

John Wetherill, from Chulmleigh, said he would be able to see the turbine from his home at the top of the village.

“You don’t do this kind of work without a good reason,” he said. “It’s wrong that people ride roughshod over public opinion.”

Julia Newbould, who lives at Cheldon Barton, around a mile from the proposed development, said: “It’s totally against planning rules as I understand it. Most people are very upset at the thought of it and that it is going ahead without planning permission.

“My fear is that they have been told it’s going to get the go-ahead, but other applications within yards of this one have been turned down previously because they were considered to be completely inappropriate.

“It just seems completely wrong; the turbine is the size of a 10-storey building – 112ft – it can’t be right. It will stick out like a sore thumb.

“The hand of man is almost non-existent here in terms of buildings. The countryside is very pretty with lovely rolling hills.

“It will look dreadful and so will all the others that follow; there are a lot of planning applications waiting in the wings if this one succeeds.”

A spokesperson for North Devon Council said: “The applicants are aware that the work that they have carried out is at their own risk.

“Should the planning application fail, enforcement action will be considered to remove the unauthorised works.”

A similar planning application was submitted to Mid Devon Council by the same applicant in October 2011 but was withdrawn after a large number of local objections were raised.

The latest proposal falls on North Devon’s side of the fence and according to the agent acting on behalf of the applicant, is in a ‘less visually intrusive location’.

A supporting statement submitted to planners on their behalf said that the proposed development would produce ‘significant economic, environmental and social benefits’.

It added: “The proposed wind turbine is robust, quiet and safe in design. It will contribute towards renewable energy generation and make an important contribution to the sustainability of the farming enterprise operated by the applicants at Mounticombe Farm.”

0 comments

Other News Stories

07:24
The coastguard pole today.

National Trust launches appeal to restore a unique part of North Devon’s coastal heritage.

Read more
Yesterday, 14:34
On the campaign trail in North Devon.

Catch up with the latest General Election goings on and ministerial visits in pictures

Read more
Yesterday, 14:26
Home secretary Theresa May with Conservative candidate for North Devon Peter Heaton-Jones

The Government minister answered questions covering everything from North Devon’s tourism industry to her favourite flavour of crisps

Read more
Yesterday, 14:16

Councillors have approved contentious plans for 105 houses in Pilton.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:51
Princess Anne visits the Lynton Cliff Railway on Friday morning. Picture: @LLCliffRailway

Princess visit kicks off 125th anniversary celebrations in style.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:24
Labour Party leader Ed Miiband and Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon during the BBC Challengers' Election Debate 2015. Photo: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

David Cameron has warned of more borrowing and taxes if Ed Miliband does a deal with the Scottish National Party (SNP) to become Prime Minister.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:46
beer

Beer festival will see music, barbecue and beer follow rugby matchers in Barnstaple on Saturday.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:43
James Pugsley with his late brother, Tom

The 21-year-old will be running the London Marathon to raise funds for the RNLI in memory of his late brother Tom Pugsley.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:00
Lyndsay Platt, with The Glorious Oyster horsebox on Westward Ho! Picture: Sarah Howells

As part of our campaign to promote North Devon’s fish and seafood, we spoke to The Glorious Oyster in Westward Ho!

Read more
Thu, 17:17
Catch Ed Byrne in Barnstaple this autumn. Picture: Roslyn Gaunt

Catch the famous funnyman on stage at The Queen’s Theatre this autumn...

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 4°C

Most Read News

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition today E-edition



North Devon's trusted business finder