Wind Turbines

LATEST:   planning application PA13/04323* has been submitted on 14 May 2013 for installation of 2 x 5kw small wind turbines (evance R9000) on 15m towers | Gazeland Farm Warleggan Liskeard Cornwall PL14 6PJ
 

Application – 55 kW wind turbine, South Bofindle Farm, Mount, Warleggan

STATUS:  Approved with conditions
see: decision notice (28/01/13)  – officer report (28/01/13)  – other documents

>> BBC NEWS:  Cornwall wind turbine approved after parish decision change  – Warleggan Parish Council had voted against the proposals for South Bofindle Farm in December.  It changed its decision after being contacted by Cornwall Council planners…  BBC News, Cornwall, 05/02/2013 

E3120 turbine
proposed for both Bofindle Farm and South Bofindle Farm
from fineenergy.wordpress.com
click to see larger image

By a majority of four to three, the Planning Sub-Committee at the parish meeting of Thursday 20th December 2012 had voted not to support application PA12/10968 for “Installation of a single small-scale 55 kW wind turbine on a 36 m Monopole tubular tower (up to 47 m tip height) with 3 blades and a rotor diameter of 19.2 m and associated equipment’ at South Bofindle, Mount, Bodmin, PL30 4DU.”  Full details of the discussions and decisions made are given in the minutes of the meeting.

Click the link above to find out more about this application, and to review the documents held at Cornwall County Council;  note that in the documents listing some of the documents appear unlabelled, but they can still be seen by clicking on the acrobat logo on the left of each row. Comments and letters submitted to Cornwall Council can also be found there, both in favour and against, and those interested can submit their own comments by letter or through their website.

If you wish to see recent observations about this application from readers of Warleggan News, and/or to contribute your own thoughts and ideas, please go down this page until you get to the top of the ‘comments’ section.

.


Application – 5 kW wind turbine, Castle Dewey, Warleggan

STATUS:  Approved with conditions  – erected Nov 2012; up and running
– (decision notice not available online)

A parish meeting was held at the Jubilee Hall on 4th September, where, amongst other things, the planning application was discussed for a small wind turbine at Castle Dewey,  PA12/05804See minutes for this meeting.

Amongst the arguments made in favour were its relatively small height (‘a telegraph pole and a half’), the compatibility of its output (5kW) with the needs of the farm, its ability (according to some) to ‘fit in’ with the topography of the surrounding environment, its low noise levels, its green credentials as an environmentally friendly power source, its role in helping make the farm viable, its compatibility with a culture of centuries of change and progress in the area, and, according to one, the beauty of turbines.

Evance R9000

Evance R9000 5kw turbine
as had been proposed for Castle Dewey and has now been installed there
from greenreview.blogspot.co.uk
click to see larger image

Arguments against included the inappropriateness of its location deep within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and so close to historic sites (tumuli etc.), the insufficient consultation with neighbours, the proximity to some residences, the potential effects on health (both known and unknown), the spoiling of the landscape including when viewed from the road, and the fear of a precedent being set:  that if this one is approved, more will surely follow.

The planning sub-committee considered the application, and voted five in favour of the application, and three against.

Background: The proposed turbine is an Evance R9000, 5kW, on a 15 metre tower.  Like the turbine proposed for Bofindle (see below), it would be a three-blade turbine, but with a tower less than half the height, with blades less than half the size, and it would produce a tenth of the power output  (see photos above).

Note that on the planning website, some of the documents listed appear unlabelled in the ‘associated documents’ window, but can still be viewed by clicking on the PDF logo on the left, including the top listed item, the planning application itself.  It can be safely assumed, also, that the listing of it as a 5 watt turbine is also in error.

.


Application – 50 kW wind turbine, Bofindle Farm, Mount, Warleggan

STATUS:  PA12/05060 (Bofindle Farm) – Application refused, 15th Feb 2013
– (decision notice not available online)

A well-attended meeting was held on 7th August 2012, at which plans for the proposed turbine PA12/05060 at Bofindle Farm, near to Carne Wood, were discussed.  Full minutes  for this meeting are posted on Warleggan News. Below is an informal brief summary, produced earlier, which is NOT an official record:

  • Statements were made, firstly on behalf of the applicant, and secondly in opposition to the proposal.
  • A lively discussion followed on the various issues and factors raised.
  • The following resolution was proposed, seconded and voted on by Warleggan parishioners through a show of hands  –  36 voted in favour of the resolution, and 9 against:

    “This Parish Meeting strongly urges the Parish Planning Sub-Committee to recommend the rejection of the planning application for a wind turbine at Bofindle Farm, Mount. This Meeting would like the parish’s formal response to Cornwall Council – whatever that response is – to be accompanied by the following explanation:

    “The Parish Meeting of Warleggan views the application PA12/05060 as incompatible with the importance and protection afforded to an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in current national and local planning policies. As these are due shortly to be superseded, we believe the application could be resubmitted at that time and that, unlike the present application, a wildlife survey is undertaken together with adequate consultation with nearby residents – carried out and recorded according to the Council’s own guidelines.”
  • After further discussions, the Planning Sub-Committee then gathered to consider the application PA12/05060, and voted two in favour of the application, three against, and two abstentions.

RESEARCH:

  • Review the PA12/05060 wind turbine planning application;  and/or find out about other plans in the area by going to the council’s planning search page.  Comments to the council on this or any planning applications can be made online, or by letter.
  • Why not watch a short video showing the E-3120 turbine in action  – for example, there is one produced by an installer Solar Ventus.  Or read the 4-page brochure about the turbine produced by the manufacturers, Endurance Wind Power.
  • Or just google away…

 

Use the ‘comments’ window below to express your views. Please be careful in how you phrase things, especially if you want to disagree with someone else’s comment.  The idea of this site is to bring people together …

Comments received by email:

Advertisements
  1. At the meeting tonight I hope that you will elect councillors who represent the majority of the people in Warleggan Parish who are actively against wind turbines.

    I ask everyone to be very honest about Roger and his contributions. I place it again on record that I am furious about the Parish Clerk’s letter saying that Roger was not asked by him to put forward the objections on behalf of the subcommittee. Roger was a person of huge integrity and cannot be defamed in this way.

    Cathy FARNWORTH

  2. Well said Cathy, particularly under the current circumstances. I fully concur with all you have said which I consider to be a totally accurate picture of the situation which has turned out to be such a mess. It really is terribly unfortunate in such a small community that divisions are caused in this way but, at times, you have to crack the egg etc.
    I can in some way appreciate an application for just one turbine, especially South Bofindle which is outside the AONB, but certainly am appalled that the previous application for Bofindle is still being applied for, laying at it does in an AONB and which will be seen for miles around.
    On a separate matter I really cannot understand how a vote can be changed in the way it was in the case of South Bofindle and was surprised by the comments of Derris Watson to the effect that it followed Council protocol!
    I fervently hope that you have a positive response to your requests but I must say that I am not hopeful as the Council and its staff seem so fully committed to totally lay waste to this beautiful county.

  3. I had not wanted to comment on recent representations on the website regarding Roger and the wind turbine issue. However,I have learned that bbc cornwall will be covering the issues in the near future. It is true to say that I have been becoming increasingly unhappy over events and had thought to comment anyway. I feel I cannot leave my father undefended, with no voice of his own. Because I love him, I am compelled to speak the truth as I know it. I am afraid, too, of causing upset to others. Yet I feel a sadness and anger that troubles me at a time when I am trying to think of Roger and what he meant to me and to other people. I do not know exactly what the broadcast will say but I wish, in advance, to make the following points clear.

    I state categorically that it is completely wrong to state in a letter to Planning that my father, Roger Farnworth, was not requested to put together the objections of the meeting on December 20th. He phoned me the day after that meeting and described the meeting at length. He was upset by what he felt was hostility directed towards him by the applicant and a few others, and had found it difficult to speak. Roger lived in the parish for 42 years and so knew everyone well. He respected every one profoundly, including the applicant. Everyone knows that. Indeed, over the past few months he frequently spoke of Geoff warmly and respectfully to me – never a single bad word about him as a person – and Roger talked much on Geoff’s right to earn a living. At the same time, as you all know, he believed that what Geoff is doing to the parish – the community as well as the landscape – is profoundly wrong.

    Roger told me in that call, and when he came to see me in Germany three days later, that he had been deeply touched by the chair being prepared to support his right to speak and that this meant a great deal to him. He then said very clearly that Andy had approached him after the meeting to say he wasn’t rightly sure of what to write regarding the objections to the turbine, and could Roger do it on his behalf? He actually cited Andy’s exact words to me. It’s not surprising that Andy would have asked him. Andy has been doing a brilliant job as clerk/secretary for the parish over the years, but the pressures from the two sides are so great that it would indeed make sense for him to have suggested to Roger – who had done so much research on the issue, to summarise the concerns. If Roger did not think he had been asked he would certainly have submitted the objections under his own name only.

    Roger brought his notes to Germany and I helped him type them up. We spent quite some time over Christmas doing this. Imagine the time and dedication it took when he was already feeling ill, and when he wanted to be with his grandchildren. It has been said that the objections were not received within five days of that meeting by Planning. Well, this is harsh, counting in the limited working days between Christmas and New Year and possible postal delays. I would say he probably got the objection in to Planning on time. I know that he posted them on December 30th. However, this delay apparently seems to have become a further justification for setting aside the objections Roger wrote on behalf of the committee at their request.

    You will remember that Roger went to great efforts, plodding through the rain to try and get a true assessment of everyone’s views, knocking on doors. It is not easy for him to do that knowing that some people would be unfriendly. He contacted me before starting off but reiterated the importance of getting a good understanding of feeling about the new application. I was worried about him getting cold and wet and said so, but I did not put him off. Roger told me afterwards about his visits, noting to me that the neighbours on the farm closest to the proposed turbine said that they won’t move against the applicant and they won’t speak a word because they have known him since he was a boy – but that they truly don’t want the turbine. Roger was sad at the way their lives will be spoiled but he understood and admired their dignity and loyalty. And really, we all know that many people are bound to the applicant one way or another. They may not be happy about the turbines but they feel unable to speak, or they support the turbine simply because they deeply care for Geoff. I do not think that these are sufficient grounds for supporting the turbine even if they are deeply felt.

    There is nothing wrong with a member of the committee having a view on the turbine. In fact every single committee member has a well-known view and voted predictably on December 20th according their view. Roger is the only person who actually took the time to try and understand before that meeting what the wider community thought by canvassing widely across the parish. He had no personal axe to grind; he had no financial interest since he would never ever have sold the Rookery. Roger really wanted to know how widely his views were shared, and yes, to try and stimulate people to think about the great change that the turbine will bring. What is wrong in that? Isn’t it what every politician would do? How would anyone know who to vote for if you did not know their views? On what basis should the applicant have tried to stop Roger from speaking?

    Roger loved this landscape. His soul sang when he saw the Neolithic barrows on the horizons, already thousands of years old before Jesus was born. The ancient world is around us. Do you not see the privilege of living where we do? The structures of the ancient peoples call across Cornwall to each other and to the heavens especially the pole star. They call across this parish to the parishes beyond, from horizon to horizon. What a miracle that we, thousands of years later, can share in this. Roger loved the shifting landscape, the way the light changes, the wind bending the trees in ways entirely unknowable. Many people in the parish share that delight, and this is why they live here.

    Think about this: The proposed turbines will be the largest structures to be built in the whole immensity of time that humans have lived in this area. They will overtop the trees, they will not bend to nature, they will stop our seeing the ancient world and the ever present world of shifting light. They represent an industrialisation of the landscape in a place that should be kept free. In other countries like Germany – and I have often said this – strategic zoning of wind turbines allows places like Warleggan to remain unique and special, whilst still allowing the nation to pursue wind energy. Most of the parish is in an AONB as well, a testament to its unusual and fragile beauty, and turbines placed adjacent to the AONB will steal this loveliness. Surveys in Warleggan Parish show that the vast majority of the people in the parish do not want turbines. This is precisely why they live here, or why they came here. They love the place how it is. Some may not care much, but others deeply care, and that matters.

    Why should one person take away so much from everyone else? He is getting rich and so many others are losing. Really, who among the parish actually gains anything? There will surely be economic losses too. I am certain that many of the guests to the Rookery, including a family that has been coming for 25 years, simply will stop coming. That will be true of many holiday makers to other businesses in the parish who will just be horrified and will not return, or even book in the first place. It is wrong to advance your own business at the expense of everyone else’s.

    Roger spent a great deal of time researching alternative green energy and was actively finding out about community energy planning by attending meetings organised by the New Economics Foundation and talking to various people developing green energy plans for everyone in their parishes. He had planned to put forward proposals to the parish on this. This is the way forward, a gentler approach, a coordinated approach, a parish-wide agreed approach. We all understand the need for new forms of energy, but not like this – individualistic, without consensus, causing active harm.

    What I see is that the age old ways of this community in managing how to live together is breaking down. I have for so many years been deeply impressed by the old ways of respecting each other in the parish. The courtesy, the deep and sincere loyalties, the willingness to share lives without infringing or imposing upon the lives of others. My tribute to the parish has been to record your life stories, for so many of you are remarkable people. I recognize fully the deep sincere and true loyalties so evident in the wonderful support given to Geoff by some of the older members of the community. This means so much because it is so deeply felt. Roger likewise understood and felt deeply that these loyalties are something wonderful and true and he never criticised a single individual who stood with Geoff. But now I see the whole wind turbine issue as setting neighbour against neighbour, perhaps for ever. That is wrong in the most profound way possible.

    I want to know:

    1. Why the vote of 20th December has been set aside. It may be technically possible to do this, but why was the original vote not ‘acceptable’? Is the parish committee a mere rubber stamp committee that has to vote again when the powers above are not pleased?

    2. I want to know why all committee members were re-canvassed only four days after my father died and a new vote ‘taken’ without any meeting with the parish. Is that ‘democracy’ in action?

    3. And specifically, what role did Derris (and Davina?) play in intimidating (and I mean that word) the committee about the ‘legality’ of their action? I have been informed that our committee were told by Derris that the committee cannot vote against ‘policy’. That cannot be right; the committee has an advisory function.

    I cannot understand that callousness of taking advantage of Roger’s death to assemble a new vote which now apparently stands at 4 in favour and 2 against (where previously it was 3 in favour and 4 against).

    This is not only about appalling ‘timing’; it is about the right of all parishioners to know what is going on in the place that they love. It is an absurdity that this new ‘vote’ has happened without anyone outside the committee knowing about it. Normally, notice has to be given before a parish meeting is held, but the deadline from Cornwall Council was shorter than the notice period required to hold a parish meeting, so the parish chair was placed in an impossible position. In sum, it seems to me that there has been completely inappropriate and unwarranted pressure from Cornwall Council, who have pressurized the committee to overturn their earlier vote, and given them impossibly little time to carry this out let alone consult with the parishioners. The way this parish has functioned, healthily and happily for generations, is being deeply damaged.

    I ask for the following:

    – I ask for the December 20th vote to stand.

    – I ask that the submissions Roger made on behalf of the committee regarding the South Bofindle turbine be scrutinised carefully by Planning. They make a very strong case that basic planning regulations are not met.

    – I ask that despite the conditional approval for the South Bofindle Turbine that all turbine applications be re-examined at the highest levels of County decision-making.

    – I ask for the active role of Derris (and perhaps Davina) in influencing parish level decision-making in Warleggan Parish, and in other parishes, to be examined by an independent person or body.

    – I ask Geoff directly to withdraw his wind turbine applications in the interests of the greater good.

    • Elizabeth banfield

      The Committee CAN vote against CC Policy, that’s Democracy. However it has to have legal and specific reasons if it wants to carry any weight. Otherwise it just stands as an objection. It sounds as though Roger had plenty of Legal and specific reasons.

      With regard to the notification, it would be useful to know the date of the letter sent to the committee and the return date (often it says ‘within 5 days’ but when you check it’s more often than not five working days and so if you include a weekend it is longer. In the last few weeks, I have known 5 days to mean 13 days in reality . Therefore, what was the rush to get this new vote back to CC Planners? A call to the Planning Officer – by anyone – will always clarify the situation and they are usually very helpful.

      Dare I say it sounds as though ……………… no perhaps I won’t say it. Leave it to you all to make your own minds up.

COMMENTS - write your comment here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: