Massive wind turbine plans spark protest

Mid Wales | News | Published:

Plans for four massive wind turbines more than 100 metres tall in a village near the Shropshire border have been unveiled.

REG Windpower wants to build the windfarm at Knightley Hall, close to Gnosall near Newport.

The firm says that the turbines, which would be 130 metres (426ft) tall to blade tip, would produce enough energy to power 5,000 homes each year. But campaigners are already fighting the plans, describing them as "the biggest you will ever see".

The turbines are among the tallest of any application lodged in Shropshire and Mid Wales and would be much bigger than Big Ben, which stands at 96 metres (314ft) and the 120metre-high (394ft) London Eye.

Councillor Mike Smith, Stafford Borough Council member for Gnosall and Woodseaves, said: "Those who live near it won't want it. These are the biggest turbines you'll ever see.

"I have already informed the consultants that this area is subject to helicopters from RAF Shawbury. If it's going to be rejected, I'd have thought that would be the reason."

Jayne Cooper, clerk to Gnosall Parish Council, added: "The applicant is currently carrying out a mail drop to all houses. The council will at that point be able to make a more informed decision and make plans to seek the views of parishioners."

There are also plans are in the pipeline to build a 130 metre turbine at The Newnes, near Ellesmere, while nPower Renewables want to build a 65-turbine wind farm at Carnedd Wen, Llanbrynmair, near Machynlleth, with each turbine having a blade tip height of 137 metres (449ft).

The Carnedd Wen application is currently part of a public inquiry in Welshpool.

Three consultation events have been organised for people with questions about the Gnosall scheme. The first is at Woodseaves Village Hall on December 5 from 4pm to 8pm, followed by meetings at Norbury Village Hall on December 6 from 4pm to 7pm, and at the Grosvenor Centre in Gnosall's High Street on December 7 from 10am to 2pm.

REG Windpower intends to submit a planning application in spring next year.

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