Molesworth wind farm objections ‘must be in by Friday’

CAMPAIGNERS against a proposed six-turbine wind farm at Molesworth are urging objectors to get their comments in to the planning authority this week.

RWE Npower Renewables has applied for planning consent for what it calls Molesworth Wind Farm – a prospect that is sure to generate huge local opposition.

The company wants to put up six three-bladed turbines up to 126 metres (416 feet) in height to blade tip, together with a lot of associated infrastructure, on 245 hectares of land south-west of RAF Molesworth, off Warren Lane Bythorn.

The Stop Molesworth Wind Farm Action Group, which was formed after the idea originally surfaced in 2010, believes the proposal contravenes Huntingdonshire District Council’s own policy on wind turbines in the northern wolds, which is that there should be only one such installation, of no more than three turbines.

With permission granted on appeal for four 130-metre turbines near Ellington, that should be enough for the ridge to the north of the A14, the action group believes.

In a recent survey covering 10 villages surrounding the site 93.4 per cent were against the application, said spokesman Lorna Lane-Ley on Monday.

“The Stop Molesworth Wind Farm Action Group believes that this shows a clear message to Huntingdonshire District Council that this application does not have local approval. The deadline for objections to be lodged with HDC is Friday, and we urge anyone who has not already done so to write to HDC planning department.”

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The action group recently organised a protest walk along Warren Lane, a footpath used daily by many residents of Bythorn and the surrounding area for rambling, dog-walking and horse-riding.

“The proposed turbines would be either side of the footpath and those who attended agreed that the turbine would spoil their enjoyment of this recreational facility,” Ms Lane-Ley told The Hunts Post.

The group plans to hand its response the Npower’s 1,430-page application documentation to planners on Friday, having spend the past six weeks poring over the detail of the application.

RWE Npower Renewables says the six turbines now applied for would generate up to 15 megawatts of electricity, sufficient to power 8,700 homes.

If permission is granted, the turbines and other equipment will be shipped from Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands. On days when concrete for the bases is being poured, construction will generate up to 168 heavy lorry movements a day.

There will be protection for great crested newts and badgers, and the development will benefit other wildlife including birds, small mammals such as bats, invertebrates and amphibians, the applicants claim.

They acknowledge that there will be impact on many of the 170 listed buildings – nine of them Grades I and II* – five conservation areas, four scheduled ancient monuments and a Roman road.