THE public inquiry into the proposed wind farm at Cotton Farm near Graveley closed yesterday (Tuesday) after two weeks of evidence had been heard – and the protesters are confident of victory.

THE public inquiry into the proposed wind farm at Cotton Farm near Graveley closed yesterday (Tuesday) after two weeks of evidence had been heard - and the protesters are confident of victory.

Energy giant npower wants to overturn the decision by Huntingdonshire District Council to refuse permission to site eight 127m-high wind turbines in the village.

The inquiry opened on May 18 at Pathfinder House, the headquarters of HDC in Huntingdon, and has been heard there and at Wood Green Animal Shelters in Godmanchester, where the closing session took place.

Inspector Martin Pike heard evidence from npower, HDC, South Cambridgeshire District Council and protesters, the Cotton Farm Action Group.

The action group's spokesman Bev Gray, from Graveley, told The Hunts Post yesterday that he thought the inquiry had been "robust" and had exposed npower's environmental evidence as flawed.

He said: "A lot of local people have given speeches at this inquiry and spoken movingly. They have been phenomenal. They have come up with hard evidence that npower's barrister has had to answer."

Those opposed to the wind farm have argued that the plans would have visual impact, increase noise pollution, destroy the countryside and have a detrimental impact on wildlife.

HDC planners refused permission for the scheme saying it failed on two key landscape measures and also raised concern about the impact on the nearby Grade II-listed Toseland Hall.

The inquiry has heard evidence from a witness living near the Red Tile Wind Farm near Chatteris, who said she was living under "noise and shadow flicker".

Another woman said she had 
to abandon her home near a wind farm in Lincolnshire because the noise made it impossible to live there.

On Friday, Huntingdon MP, now the Minister for Justice, Jonathan Djanogly attended the inquiry.

Matt Pinfield, principal developer at RWE npower renewables, told The Hunts Post before the inquiry started: "We are confident that our proposals will stand up to the scrutiny of a public inquiry.

"We believe that Cotton Farm is an excellent site and, if constructed, it would generate enough electricity to meet the annual average needs of thousands of homes and reduce emissions of carbon dioxide."

Today the inspector, Martin Pike, was due to inspect the site accompanied by protesters and representatives from HDC and npower. A decision is expected in eight weeks.