Planners approve 100ft wind turbine at Rathmell

Councillor Donny Whaites

Councillor Donny Whaites

First published in News

A wind turbine, more than 100ft high, can be built at a Rathmell farm after it won the support of Craven councillors.

Despite being recommended for refusal by planning officers, the scheme for Boostagill Farm was approved by Craven District Council.

Officers agreed with Ribble Banks Parish Council that the turbine would have an unacceptable visual impact on the surrounding area, but a majority of councillors thought there were sound reasons for its approval.

The application, by the Brennand family, was referred to committee following the request of ward member Coun Donny Whaites (Cons) He argued that the purpose of the turbine was to make the farm more economical for milk production and pointed out that there were already a number of turbines in the area, especially in Lancashire, which effectively broke the skyline.

Councillors, who visited the site before making a decision, were told that the Brennands wanted the 113ft high turbine to help power the farm.

The council received representations from ten people, eight in support, and two against. Supporters argued for the need for renewable energy and that the farm - one of the few dairy farms left in the area - had a vital need for affordable energy.

Those opposed to the turbine, including the Council for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE), believed it would harm the character and appearance of the countryside made worse by the cumulative effect of more than one.

But, the majority of councillors thought the needs of the farm on balance outweighed any negative impacts of the turbine and that it was not overlooked by other properties.

Committee chairman Coun Richard Welch (Cons) did not want to comment on the application.

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