Go-ahead for ex-Tory MP's wind turbines

Plans by former Conservative defence secretary Sir John Nott to build two 80ft wind turbines on his country estate have been approved.

The proposal to build the turbines on land near the village of St Erth, Cornwall caused outrage among some residents who claimed the structures would ruin the landscape and disrupt wildlife.

Sir John, 76, is understood to want to halve the annual energy bill for his house, farm buildings and holiday homes and said he was "very pleased" that the project was given the green light.

However, resident Lesley Bickley said the community was upset and felt the structures would "dominate the landscape". The parish council officially objected to the scheme, saying the turbines were too big and "potentially unneighbourly", and letters of objection cited noise, visual impact and potential to scare livestock.

However, the planning authority, Penwith District Council, found the turbines did not contravene regulations and granted the scheme conditional approval on Monday.

Sir John said: "I do not wish to say anything on the matter other than I am very pleased it has been approved."

The turbines will be mounted on 59ft towers and measure 81ft from the ground to the tip of the rotor blades.

A report to the planning committee stated: "It is considered that the proposal is in accord with all relevant policies and will have no significant adverse impact on the surrounding landscape or neighbouring properties."

A number of residents complained about the turbines and wrote to the council.

Mrs Bickley, 53, said they now felt "ignored" and believed the turbines were "forced on them".

"Those of us that live nearby are very upset, very frustrated. I am amazed that the council has pushed this through. It is such a shame that in our lovely countryside those huge things will suddenly spring up, it's outrageous. It is not that we are against wind turbines, other people here have them, but these are enormous," she said.

The conditions for approval include set noise levels and the district council can remove the turbines if they are not being used.

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