Ministers have refused planning permission for a 970MW windfarm off the coast of the Isle of Wight, officials confirmed today.
The Telegraph newspaper had previously predicted that the 194 turbine Navitus Bay project would be denied development consent by a planning inspectorate, following opposition from local MPs, councils and the National Trust.
In recommendations to the government, the Examining Authority highlighted that the visual impacts of the project - a 50-50 joint venture between Eneco Wind UK and EDF Energy - were of "serious concern".
"Careful consideration has been given to the application, and the planning and energy issues involved," a spokesperson for the Department of Energy and Climate Change said in a statement.
The project was due to feature the world's most powerful wind turbine, an 8MW model made by MHI Vestas, a joint venture between Denmark's Vestas Wind Systems and Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.
On top of the turbines the project would have involved building three offshore substations, a meteorology mast, electrical connections between the turbines, six export cables to the coast at Taddiford Gap in Hampshire and onshore connection works including six underground cables to a new electrical sub-station at Three Legged Cross in Dorset.
Stuart Grant, project Director at Navitus Bay, said: “While we are clearly disappointed by today’s decision, we would like to thank the communities of Dorset, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight and all our stakeholders for the high level of engagement they've shown in the project, including their responses to our consultations and during the examination process.
"During the past five years the project team has carried out comprehensive stakeholder and community consultation. We will now discuss the options available with our shareholders and update stakeholders in due course.”