Wind turbine inquiry opens

A PUBLIC inquiry into plans to build 400ft wind turbines at a village beauty spot opened today (Tuesday).

The hearing, led by an independent government planning inspector, will look at plans for the wind farm between Benington and Watton-at-Stone.

East Herts Council will defend its reasons for refusing the application and the inspector will also hear the opposing arguments put forward by the appellant, the Bott family.

Campaign group Stop Benington Wind Farm will put forward its case against the proposal.

The application is for three 2MW wind turbines of up to 390ft (119m) in height, as well as a permanent weather mast and a substation.

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Planning chiefs refused the application, deeming it “inappropriate development” on Green Belt land. They also said the height and movement of the turbines would harm the landscape, and the renewable energy benefits did not outweigh the negative impact in a rural area.

The inquiry started yesterday and continues today (Wednesday), and then from next Monday to Friday.

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It will be held in the East Herts Council chamber at Wallfields, Hertford, every day except Monday, when it moves to the River Room in Castle Hall, Hertford.

The inquiry starts at 10am each day and is open to anyone wishing to attend.

The inspector’s decision should be issued within five weeks of the inquiry ending.

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