IT was more than eight years ago when renewable energy company Energie Kontor first revealed plans to build 11 wind turbines towering at almost 400ft at Brightenber Hill, a farmland/drumlin field site between Coniston Cold and West Marton.

Last week, Greg Clark, the Secretary of State in charge of planning, sided with a Government planning inspector and Craven District Council to reject a vastly reduced three-turbine scheme – largely because of its unacceptable impact on the lives of not one, but three farming families.

Two of the families would suffer "unacceptable harm" to their living conditions and "very significant" visual impact caused by living next to the massive, omnipresent structures.

A third farm would also suffer "significant" visual impact, but not as severe to render the property an unattractive place to live.

In addition, the Secretary of State mentioned the harm caused to the setting of the listed Edwin Lutyens-designed Gledstone Hall, its park and gardens. Greg Clark, who called in the appeal because of the high level of public interest, appears to have left very little wriggle room for Energie Kontor, although it can still challenge the decision at the High Court within six weeks.

There will be many people, including the farming families, one of whom went ahead and bought their property following the first rejected appeal six years ago, who will hope the decision marks the end of wind farm proposals at Brightenber.

Ward councillor, Alan Sutcliffe, believes it is the end of any such proposals in the whole of Craven.

When Energie Kontor first launched its plans, its then project manager said it was the only suitable site in Craven. It certainly won't be without a successful challenge to the High Court, but it remains to be seen whether the company will look elsewhere.