September 27th, 2016

Wind turbine plans unveiled

Updated: 4:57 pm, May 07, 2015

PLANS to build two 35-metre-high wind turbines in Hockley Heath – the first in the area – have been submitted to Solihull Council, The Observer can reveal.

Urban Wind has applied to build what it describes as two ‘small scale’ wind turbines on land at Box Trees Craft Centre so the centre can run off the electricity and reduce its carbon footprint.

Hockley Heath Parish Council has already objected to the application, listing a number of issues including the wind turbines being too close to houses, having a negative visual impact on the village and being a distraction to motorists.

Despite consulting with villagers, just two letters of objection were received by the Parish Council – both listing, among other things, concerns about the damaging effect on house prices.

The two turbines will stand at 35 metres high, the same as seven double-decker buses on top of each other, and will have a 12m-long rotating blade.

If approved, the wind turbines would be permitted to generate electricity for the next 25 years – after which the owners can either apply to renew the application or remove them.

In a bid to calm potential concerns claiming they will be destroying the Greenbelt the developer has said the turbines will protect the land from further development, particularly housing and therefore comply with the Unitary Development Plan (2006) policy.

In its application Urban Wind also made a list of other special circumstances explaining why it should be given approval to build on the Greenbelt.

These included helping Solihull hit its own Renewable Energy targets and the fact it will contribute to the National Renewable Energy and Carbon Reduction Targets.

They also said the application would be financially and environmentally sustainable for the Craft Centre.

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