Plans have been submitted to install a 189-ft high wind turbine on land to the south of Kirby Bellars and west of Great Dalby.
Vox Energy Ltd, agents for the applicants, say the proposal would have wider benefits to the local community as well as allowing sheep farmers Mr and Mrs Stephens, of Pasture View Farm, to secure the long-term sustainability of their business by having their own energy supply.
Based on calculations and assessments Vox Energy claims the proposal will generate enough electricity to power more than 140 homes - which it says is the equivalent of almost the entire number of properties (154) within the parish of Kirby Bellars - with much of the energy being consumed locally.
And the energy firm says it has also offered to pledge £20,000 to a community benefit fund which would be paid upon commissioning of the turbine.
In addition it claims the proposal complies with new ministerial guidance stating that a wind energy development should only be approved if, following consultation, the proposal has the backing of the affected local community.
Its design and access statement says: “During a community consultation process phase a single objection (an email from Mr and Mrs Rudkin of ‘The Spinney’) was received out of the nine consultees which were contacted. It’s therefore considered the proposal has the support of the local community and thereby complies with the legislation.”
According to Vox Energy the Rudkins objected on grounds of the turbine’s serious visual impact on the surrounding area, its unacceptable cumulative impact with other turbines in the local area, impacts on highways safety, threat to wildlife and natural environment, with specific concern for bats, and concerns that Thorpe Satchville Road couldn’t cope with delivery vehicles.
The firm said it had responded to the Rudkins, addressing each of their concerns.
Its design and access statement adds: “This proposal is expected to save 258 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per annum, equating to over 5,000 tonnes over its lifetime.
“It will ensure that Pasture View Farm can continue to operate on a sustainable level and is likely to open local employment opportunities to young people, with income received from the sale of electricity to the National Grid enabling the applicants to hand responsibility of the day to day farming activities on as they approach old age.”
At the time of going to press it was understood Melton Council hadn’t yet received responses from some consultees including Kirby Bellars Parish Council.
More to follow.