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Groups braced for wind farms fight in South Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 08:00 05 January 2013

Peter Forest, project developer talks to members of the community from Hempnall and surrounding areas during the second public exhibition held by TCI Renewables explaining the details of a proposed wind farm near the village. Photograph Simon Parker

Peter Forest, project developer talks to members of the community from Hempnall and surrounding areas during the second public exhibition held by TCI Renewables explaining the details of a proposed wind farm near the village. Photograph Simon Parker

Archant

Wind farm objectors in two south Norfolk communities are preparing for new battles in 2013 after a renewable energy firm declared its intention to develop two sites.

Campaigners in Hempnall are poised to respond to new plans by TCI Renewables for four 126m-high turbines in the village following a public consultation last year.

And residents in Tivetshall St Mary, near Diss, are also waiting to see whether plans for three 140m-high turbines will be determined by district councillors in 2013.

The proposals, near to the A140, off New Road and Patten Lane, were submitted by Enertrag in 2011, but were taken on by Oxfordshire-based TCI Renewables last year.

Another TCI scheme for three large turbines at the former Pulham airfield at Upper Vaunces Farm were refused by an inspector on appeal last year.

Eric Kirby, of the Tivetshall Action Group (TAG), which was formed to oppose the onshore wind farm scheme, said planning permission for a wind testing mast on the site was set to expire on January 12 and he hoped enforcement action would be taken by South Norfolk Council to remove it. He also called on the renewable energy to withdraw its wind farm plans.

“There are more reasons to refuse Tivetshall than there were for Vaunces because of the footpath and bridleways and English Heritage objection. They [TCI Renewables] are spending a lot of money for nothing, but we do not think we are off the hook,” he said.

Geoff Moulton, of SHOWT (Stop Hempnall’s Onshore Wind Turbines), added that local campaigners were primed to fight new plans for Bussey’s Loke in Hempnall.

A spokesman for TCI Renewables said it would be submitting a planning application for the Hempnall site early in the New Year and was working with South Norfolk Council and statutory consultees to progress the Tivetshall application through the planning process.

“We are confident that the [Hempnall] project will have minimal significant environmental impacts while contributing to renewable energy targets and reducing our reliance on unsustainable fossil fuels. Once the application has been submitted to South Norfolk Council, local residents will be able to view and comment on the proposals,” the spokesman added.

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