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Protesters to lobby plans for dairy farmer's wind turbine

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: August 31, 2012

  • St Neot Villagers came out in force to oppose a proposed Wind Turbine. on left Lynn File Picture by Sean Hernon ©

  • UNITED: St Neot Villagers came out in force to oppose a proposed wind turbine.

  • Farmer Joe Rowe addresses the people of St Neot. Picture by Sean Hernon ©

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ST NEOT residents have organised a group to lobby Cornwall Council in opposition to a proposed wind turbine development.

'Save our Cornish Landscape' are concerned by St Neot Parish Council's decision to support plans for a 150ft turbine at Great Tredinnick Farm, only 380 metres from a residential area.

Dr Lynne Jones, whose home is one of the closest to the intended turbine, said: "Given the strength of local opposition, it is outrageous that the local parish council has approved this.

"The role of the local parish council is to express the views of the local residents. The situation is not helped by the fact that there are inadequate planning guidelines for wind turbines in Cornwall."

The locale in question around Great Tredinnick Farm is classified as an Area of Great Landscape Value (AGLV), meaning that planning permissions are subject to higher levels of scrutiny.

Matthew Rowe, the son of St Neot parish councillor Joe Rowe, operates the dairy farm at Tredinnick. He said that milking and chilling processes were keeping energy bills high, and they had considered all sustainable options available to reduce costs.

"We looked at smaller sizes of turbine but they still have the same visual impact, and solar energy would take a whole field out of production," he said.

"There is a lot of debate in the area, but I need to protect the future of my business and make everything sustainable."

Mr Rowe added that the farm currently employs four people, and that there was increasing pressure on farmers to reduce their carbon footprint.

"I care about the environment and the landscape as much as the protesters. I love this part of Cornwall."

At the time of going to press, Cornwall Council planning department has received more than 100 letters condemning the proposed turbine.

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  • Fotografo  |  October 12 2012, 2:32PM

    Dear CathyRozel, I am a documentary photographer living in Cornwall. I have been interested in the current affairs relating to the Installations of Wind Turbine around the County. I wanted to develop a photographic project around the theme and wanted to know if you would be kind enough to help me on this. I have followed some of your comments and it seems you re the ideal person to have a little chat about this situation. I want to explore some of the areas that may be affected and interview some of the residents involved in this whole scenario. Please if you would like to participate let me know. You can visit my website http://tinyurl.com/9fyvljl and contact me from there. Thankfully Artur

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  • CathyRozel  |  September 01 2012, 7:21PM

    Dear Friends, The problem is that we are discussing wind turbines on a case by case basis. There is no doubt that leaving the landscape as it is will please everyone, yet building turbines will make many people unhappy. In each case, one family and/or business gains but many other businesses particularly tourist businesses may suffer, and there are associated harms to health, wildlife etc. Therefore, there is a very strong argument in favour of not building turbines. The case that farms need turbines to survive has also not been made convincingly on these pages - I believe that farms will continue in business but of course require support. This support does not have to be in the form of turbines located on individual farms. The way forward is to ensure that Cornwall Council develops a green energy policy for the whole county. Wind energy can form a part of this, but there needs to be basic zoning policies eg not within AONBs or other designated areas, wind turbines should be located in agreed areas that farmers and other supporters can buy (subsidized) shares in in order to benefit directly by receiving subsidized electricity/ and or profits - this has been a model in Germany for decades - you don't need the turbine next to your house. All this should be part of a whole energy strategy. We should request Cornwall Council to take time out to consult widely to discuss all the relevant issues/ balance different forms of energy generation/ etc and thus produce a strategy that agrees with other national and Cornish policies, supports farms alongside other businesses, and which everyone agrees is the product of a democratic process

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