Hall owner says wind farm would be financially devastating

From: Richard Chadwick, Bracken Hall, Long Causeway, Denholme, Bradford.

I WOULD like to state the following in connection with the proposed Thornton Moor Wind Farm.

I live at Bracken Hall in Denholme. Bracken Hall was built in approximately 1858 by the Foster family, the original founders of W & H Foster Ltd, Denholme.

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I bought Bracken Hall in 2003 in a somewhat dilapidated state. Over the last eight years, I have spent in excess of £1m in order to bring this historic country mansion back to its former glory, not just the house but also the gardens and grounds.

Bracken Hall faces south from the boundary of its gardens with uninterrupted views rising up about 75 metres to the top of Thornton Moor, some 600 metres distance. It is at this point that the proposed wind turbines are to be placed.

Bracken Hall would be the nearest residence to these monstrosities, being sited approximately 75 metres on the higher ground and the full width in view, each 80 metres across.

These wind turbines would stand in height above Bracken Hall 175 metres high (higher than Blackpool Tower).

For the past seven years, I have been in conflict with Bradford Council over a tree preservation order that was temporarily applied in 1965, awaiting their assessment as to which trees wanted protecting. Most of these trees are sycamore and most are in decline.

Over the years, I have been granted permission to cut down 86 trees with a further application in at present. One of Bradford Council’s main arguments for not cutting down more trees was to maintain the beautiful amenity of the area.

If this proposal goes ahead, I and my family will be moving well away from the Bradford area and the financial consequence of selling Bracken Hall would be devastating.

People do not buy houses costing £2m with wind turbines towering 175 metres above the property.

The negative equity I would face would be unthinkable.

From: Eric Innes, College Road, Copmanthorpe, York.

CONGRATULATIONS on your timely exposure of the plans which developers and their bankers have for the future of our county, plans which are driven by financial engineering rather than the engineering of a green future which they claim (Yorkshire Post, June 18).

You identified a total of 349 turbines, existing, planned and possible, which would blight all of our horizons and cause greater pain for those close to the sites. What your coverage failed to reveal is how small a contribution even this huge number would make to our energy needs.

I estimate that their potential average output, wind permitting, would be less than five per cent of the output of Drax power station alone. To match Drax would require an area of 400 square miles with 4,000 of the largest turbines currently proposed evenly spaced over the whole area.

And you’d still need Drax when the wind didn’t blow. These are the sobering statistics which need to be more widely understood if politicians and public are to be persuaded of the folly of the Government’s flawed policy of a “dash for wind” which they appear to believe is the Holy Grail for reducing our carbon footprint.

From: Thomas Black, Denton, Ilkley.

SINCE the introduction of wind farms, I would like to ask the following questions: How many have been installed and at what cost? How many are working and how much electricity has been generated? At what cost compared to conventional energy?

If the real answers could be supplied, I think many misgivings and reservations would be confirmed.

In my opinion, the scheme is badly thought out. I have yet to see a wind farm where all the windmills were turning. I think if the real costs were available it would be confirmed that the scheme is unviable and inefficient.

From: Lesley Wilkinson, Friends of Ripon Environment & Heritage.

YOUR Editorial comment on wind farms mentioned jobs. There are few jobs created by wind farms and the jobs lost in other technologies and conventional energy need to be considered.

This isn’t about green technology but about greed. If the Government didn’t subsidise wind energy so heavily, and to the detriment of other technologies, wind farm developers would not be so hasty to install wind farms.

And we are all paying for this on our electricity bills. Chris Huhne is happy to blame electricity companies for the rise in bills and tells us to change supplier. It is his policies that are to blame.

The Government is not taking into account the experiences of other countries. The more turbines that are installed the more difficulty the National Grid has in handling them and that is why wind farm owners are paid to switch them off sometimes. Crazy!

From: Keith Chapman, Custance Walk, York.

REGARDING all the controversy on wind power. The problem is we need energy for a growing population in the future and demands are going up on electricity.