Row over turbine plan near ancient mound

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PLANS to build an 80ft wind turbine in the Yorkshire Wolds are being opposed amid fears it may harm views of a scheduled ancient monument.

Spectrum Energy Systems are seeking planning permission on behalf of Ian Botterrill, owner of Willy Howe Farm, to build the turbine at the rear of his property in Burton Fleming.

The company says the 10kw turbine would form an “integral part” of the farm’s supply agreement with its biggest customer, supermarket giant Sainsbury, to use renewable energy and cut CO2 emissions.

But a campaigner is concerned about its potential impact on the landscape surrounding 
Willy Howe Barrow, an ancient mound linked to folklore dating back to the 12th century.

The mound was designated as a scheduled ancient monument by the Department of Culture Media and Sport on the advice of English Heritage.

Turbine opponent David Hinde said: “This is a relatively small-scale turbine application but it does affect a nationally important heritage site.”

Mr Hinde said two previous applications for a turbine at the farm had been withdrawn after objections submitted by English Heritage.

But Mr Botterill said he has addressed English Heritage’s concerns, and invited Mr Hinde to the site to see for himself.

He said: “It’s the smallest 10 kilowatt turbine on the market and it would be surrounded by trees the same height. There would be no impact on the tumuli at all.”

He added: “My family has been the proud custodians of the tumuli since my father moved in in 1967. It’s us that looks after it.

“There’s no way we do anything detrimental to it.”

Tales attributed to the site include a man hearing “feasting, merriment and singing” coming from the mound as he rode past it at night.

According to the legend, he was offered but declined to take a drink from the fairies, who chased him as he rode off on his horse.