Barnwell Manor wind farm Court of Appeal case quashed

February 20, 2014 by  
Filed under Green Energy News

Lyveden New BieldCouncillor Sylvia Hughes said green energy developments should not be to the detriment of heritage sites

Plans for four 300ft (91.4m) wind turbines on land close to a 17th Century lodge in Northamptonshire have been quashed by the Court of Appeal.

West Coast Energy applied to build on land at Barnwell Manor near Lyveden New Bield, home to an Elizabethan garden.

The firm tried to overturn a High Court ruling in March 2013 that the decision to allow the scheme was legally flawed.

The National Trust said the turbines were too close to its lodge. The firm is now considering what action to take.

Plans for five turbines at Barnwell Manor were rejected by East Northamptonshire District Council in 2010 following opposition by local residents who continued to fight the new proposal.

The developers won an appeal for four turbines but this was overturned by Mrs Justice Lang at the High Court who said the decision was legally flawed.

West Coast Energy decided to take the case to the Court of Appeal where three judges dismissed the case.

Managing director of West Coast Energy, Robert Tate, said: “We are disappointed with the decision of the Court of Appeal.

Duty to protect

“In our view this was a matter of professional planning judgement and careful balance where the Inspector concluded that the renewable energy benefits of the scheme outweighed any harm to the extent that planning permission could safely be given.

“However both the High Court and the Court of Appeal have not accepted the planning balance found by the Inspector so we will have to carefully consider the detail of the judgement before deciding what action to take.”

Wind turbine and Barnwell manor

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West Coast Energy said it was “disappointed” by the decision

The National Trust said it was delighted with the decision and said the turbines would have adversely affected the Grade I-listed Elizabethan manor house, lodge and garden.

Director general Helen Ghosh, said: “We are committed to renewable energy but it has to work in the landscape.

“The Trust aims to source 50% of its energy from renewables, including wind, by 2020, but this shouldn’t be at any cost.

“Our core purpose as a conservation charity means we have a duty to protect beautiful places like Lyveden and each wind proposal should be of a scale and location that works with the special qualities of its setting.”

Local councillor Sylvia Hughes, said: “Whilst we support the development of green energy, it must not be to the detriment of our valuable heritage sites.

“I think that the impact on the landscape is a crucial factor when considering a wind farm site and we know that the Lyveden landscape is highly valued by residents and visitors.”

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