Wind turbines plan for Carlton Scroop rejected by SKDC councillors

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COUNCILLORS went against planning officers’ advice on Tuesday to pass an application to erect two wind turbines on farmland at Carlton Scroop.

The application for the turbines, which had a planned hub height of 29.6m and total height of 39.6m, was deferred by the Development Control Committee in March because of concerns over noise, ecology and benefits.

The South Kesteven District Council Planning Officers recommended that the application, on land off Hough Lane, be approved.

Conor McAllister spoke on behalf of the applicant, Dick Baines of Lodge Farm, Carlton Scroop.

He said the applicant had addressed both issues of noise and ecology. The noise levels were within acceptable levels and the ecology survey revealed that the turbines were unlikely to have an adverse affect. These results were supported by Natural England and the RSPB.

But members of Hough on the Hill and Carlton Scroop Parish Councils were among nine people that spoke against the application, raising concerns about noise and lack of benefit to the community.

Speakers also raised concern about ecology, stating that there are bats in the area and a barn owl nesting project, which started four years ago. But Natural England raised no objections to the turbines.

Michael Worth, who was part of a campaign group against the turbines, said: “Damage and harm on matters concerning ecology have not been addressed satisfactorily. The voices of local people should be heard.”

Councillor Charmaine Morgan and others questioned the validity of the survey, which followed guidelines but was completed over a short period. She said in three days 52 bats were detected.

Councillors were advised that they should follow the directions of Natural England but they disagreed.

Councillor Rosemary Kaberry-Brown said: “We as councillors are elected to do a job. Are we not elected by constituents to look after and represent their interests?”

Councillor Bob Adams was supported by other committee members when he raised concerns over the turbines’ proximity to the Viking Way.

Councillor Helen Powell proposed to reject the application on the grounds that it would impact on the character of the landscape of the area. Thirteen councillors voted to reject the application and two voted for it.

l The decision on a planning application for three 15 metre wind turbines off Doddington Lane, Claypole, was 
deferred.

l The first stage of the Poplar Farm development, which features 105 houses, off Barrowby Road, Grantham, was approved by councillors after a short debate. The vote was eight for, one absention and two against. The discussion was limited after the deferral last month.