Advertiser – Delay in decision pleases campaigners

Swindon Advertiser today reported on the outcome of last nights planning meeting regarding Honda’s Wind Turbine application.

CAMPAIGNERS were able to breathe a sigh of relief as controversial proposals to build three 120 metre wind turbines were not given the go ahead last night.

Councillors on the Swindon Council planning committee voted seven against six for a motion to defer the application from Honda and sustainable energy firm Ecotricity for another month.

This will allow officers to provide more evidence in relation to the objections of ward councillors and residents.

Coun Dale Heenan (Con, Covingham and Nythe) proposed the motion to defer after hearing from representatives of Ecotricity, Honda and local residents.

He requested the council planning department produce a report setting out the legal grounds for refusal of the application.

“I don’t think we have the information to make a considered view,” he said.

Grant Macpherson, a director of Honda UK, said he hoped the application would be granted as it would help the firm achieve environmental targets.

He said: “The target for Honda in Swindon is a further reduction in CO2 emissions by 24 per cent by 2020. Some may say the application is controversial but all of us at some point are going to have to accept our responsibilities.”

Opposition to the plan has grown since it was announced last summer, with campaigners saying that each electricity-generating turbine would be almost the size of the 135m London Eye Ferris wheel.

Last night more than 100 people with ‘No’ placards gathered in the council chamber at the Civic Offices, in Euclid Street, to hear the decision.

Hazel Beaver, a South Marston resident and member of protest group Ill Wind, asked the committee to consider residents’ feeling against the proposal, saying: “Please recognise the strength of local opposition.

“We have got over 1,800 names on a petition and there have been nearly 400 personal letters sent to the planning department.

“We want Swindon Council to play safe with its residents’ health.

Coun Russell Holland (Con, St Margaret) said that if the committee were to grant planning permission it would open the doors to other wind turbine applications.

He said: “You would be setting a precedent here. As long as you have conditions you can build them where ever you want.

“It’s wrong for Swindon and the recommendations are built on shaky conditions. The residents are clearly right.”

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5 thoughts on “Advertiser – Delay in decision pleases campaigners”

  1. I am pleased to see that some further examination of the proposed wind farm may be reviewed further.
    The government are now proposing that communities may benefit from wind farms in local areas.
    The prospect of commuity charge discount has been discussed. This aligns with my previous
    suggestions about wind farms. Let’s have a proper wind farm in this area, not just for Honda. Ensure that it is sympatheically sighted in relation to residential properties and ensure that there is some tangible advantage for everyone.

  2. A fleeting glimpse on Oxford BBc News last night “Wind Generator at Reading”,subsidy paid £130,000,value of power generated £100,000,what does this mean?
    I can see that we need the services of a person to enquire into what really is involved in this form of “Power Supply”,are the proposers and owners in the Green Power Supply system in it for the subsidy paid? are they using the system to advertise that they are reducing their overall Co2 output but in fact are truly producing even more by the manufacturing and building of such inefficient generators,I am a little too long in the tooth to be able to work the real truthful cost out,but my pal in a local village grins when he gets his subsidy cheque.

  3. Allen, there is no question that wind farms are of commercial benefit to the likes of Honda’s business partners and to Honda, the former because the KWH tariff paid to them is currently 43p, which clearly is considerably more than the grid charges consumers. Honda of course will get a share of that, but also will reduce their carbon footprint and probably have carbon credits to sell on.

    You have to remember that this is an international decision driven by the EU, and it’s in a sense Britain’s own fault because our Government stupidly agreed to climate chains emission targets that were and are totally unrealistic.

    Britain is to pay out £18 billion a year until 2020 at least to reduce the countries carbon foot print, of which targets are being given to businesses.

    Does this really benefit the individual householder in SM. Absolutely not unless of course we had a wind turbine of our own.

    Are the various health claims etc true? Who really knows there is very little scientific research, and that which has been done is normally from self reporting studies in the main involving those who objected to the Turbines in the first place.

    In the end it comes down to you either like the look of them or you don’t. One thing is 100% certain is that Honda will get permission because the EU/IPCC policy will prevail.

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