Noise fears scupper farm turbine


- Credit: Archant

NOISE issues and concerns over protected bat species have prevented a 100-ft wind turbine being built.

Proposals to install the structure at Grove Farm in West Town Road, Backwell, were halted by North Somerset Council’s central area committee on Thursday.

Backwell Parish Council recommended the plans be refused and many residents also objected via North Somerset’s planning website.

Concerned villager Linda Elliot, who lives in Chelvey Road, spoke to the committee about the proposed structure, which would have been sited less than 250m from some houses.

She said: “Chelvey Road is a quiet, rural area, especially at night, and the level of noise would be unacceptable and would cause potential sleep disturbance.

“We would suffer a reduction in our quality of life.”

Stewart Waters, the agent speaking on behalf of landowners E Vowles and Sons, suggested the turbine is needed to help with electricity costs on the family-run dairy farm.

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But the council’s planning leader, Simon Exley, said: “We feel the issue with noise has not been significantly addressed.

“On the ecological side, there are concerns the ecology survey was not carried out when asked.”

Cllr Geoff Coombs said: “I am very disappointed to have to support refusal, as I am all in favour of renewable energy, but overriding decisions must be based on neighbour and environmental impact.”

The committee voted unanimously to reject the application in its current form, but invited the landowners to carry out an ecological survey and collate more information on noise impact to resubmit the plans.