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Planning inspector set to decide in Ramsgill turbine row
Bradford Council could be forced to fork out more than £200,000 if a planning inspector overturns their decision to refuse a wind turbine.
Brendan Hudson is appealing the decision made in November to refuse an 18-metre high wind turbine on farmland in High Eldwick.
He already has permission for a 15-metre high turbine on the greenbelt site at Ramsgill, off Otley Road, dating back to 2010, but applied to replace this with a larger one that would generate more electricity.
Planning officers had backed the application, believing the difference of three metres in height to be negligible to the surrounding landscape.
But there were several local objections, and in November the Council’s Keighley and Shipley planning committee threw out his application. They said there was not enough evidence to justify the additional height and that the larger turbine could spook horses that are ridden nearby.
Mr Hudson has now appealed their decision and claims the committee of acting unacceptably and questions whether they even read his application.
In the appeal he claims that if the turbine were approved when the plans were first submitted, it would have made him £1,160,000 over the next 20 years.
But in December the feed-in tariff rate dropped from 25.4 pence per KWH to 21 pence. Even if he wins the appeal, the turbine will bring in £200,991 less than if he had registered it last year.
His appeal, lodged by Ilkley-based Paralegal Services, says: “We note that this was a local committee of councillors from Keighley and Shipley, and not a full committee of Bradford Metropolitan Council.
“The planning committee have not behaved in an acceptable or reasonable way to the extent that, by refusing the application, they have caused the applicant to suffer a reduction in the income he would have received from the installation.
“The reasons that have been cited for refusal clearly demonstrate that the members of the committee failed to either read or properly digest the information that accompanied the application.”
Councillor Doreen Lee, chair of the committee, said council legal officers attend each planning meeting, and would have stepped in if there were any wrongdoing by councillors.
The appeal will be decided by a Government planning inspector in the coming months.
Nobody at Bradford Council was available for comment when contacted by the Telegraph & Argus yesterday.