Wind Farm Appeal Refused
11 February 2016
Secretary of State for Communities has intervened personally to reject Energiekontor’s appeal to erect three, 100 metre tall turbines at Brightenber Hill.
Secretary of State has decided that the wind farm will have too big an impact on our historic buildings, on our beautiful landscape and, more importantly, on the life quality of people living and working close to the proposed site.
This battle has lasted more than eight years. Our Planning Committee turned it down twice, three planning inspectors have rejected it and now the Secretary of State for Communities has said no. We can only hope that Energiekontor finally gets the point that Brightenber Hill is the wrong place to build a wind farm.
We can’t thank this community enough for all your support over the years. It has buoyed us through some dark times. We can only hope that this is our last entry on this website.
And that’s really all there is to say. Best wishes to everyone for a wind farm free 2016.
Secretary of State for Communities to Decide Appeal
Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Communities, has announced that because of all the local interest, he will personally decide the Brightenber Hill wind farm appeal. He has promised to make his decision based on the recent Ministerial Statement declaring that communities must have the final say on wind farm applications. It means yet more delay but we’re all heartened by the move. Of course, nothing is decided so we won’t speculate on the outcome. We’ll keep you posted.
Planning Appeal Hearing
The hearing went ahead on Tuesday 16 June. As expected, Planning Inspector Mike Robins was very courteous and made sure that everyone who wanted to speak had a chance to present their views. There were more than a dozen speakers opposed to the wind farm and none in favour. This is particularly important – see the item on this page, under the heading, ‘New Planning Guidance.’
Our lawyers and the Craven District Planning Officer thought it went very well but at this stage, we prefer to be cautious.
New Planning Guidance
At the end of the appeal hearing, Inspector Robins commented that if any new planning guidance were to emerge, he would ask all parties to comment. The next day, Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, announced new planning guidance. With immediate effect, local planning authorities must ensure that any plans to build a wind farm have the backing of local communities. That includes Brightenber Hill.
Is this a game changer? It looks that way but as ever, we’ll wait to see how it all develops.
The planning inspector has called for comments on this new guidance and we are preparing our response. We will mention the new rules and ask the inspector to give our community concerns a lot of weight.
Web Site Back on Line
Sorry for the interruption – we’re back.
New appeal hearing
This is set down for the 16th and 17th June, starting at 10 a.m. Venue is the Council Chamber of Craven District Council offices:
1 Belle Vue Square,
There is ample parking nearby. We will be well represented by a specialist planning barrister and we’re all ready to go. A good turnout will convince the inspector that the community is behind us but this time, we will not hand out placards and we encourage an air of quiet dignity.’
Over the last eight years, we’ve taken issue with EK’s behaviour so we thought it time to give everyone an idea of what we’ve been up against. Check out the new link to ‘Energiekontor Conduct.’