Cornish wind turbine permission quashed by High Court

Date:

29/07/2010

Source:

BBC News website

Matter:

Mageean, Dan

File:

The environmental impact of the turbine will need to be reconsidered

A man from Cornwall has won his fight to have a government inspector's decision to grant planning permission for a wind turbine quashed.

Daniel Mageean, of Redland Farm, St Ive, Liskeard, brought the case after a planning inspector overruled Cornwall Council's decision to refuse permission.

Judge Robinson ruled the inspector's decision-making was flawed.

The proposal for the turbine at High Down must be reconsidered.

Mr Mageean, who campaigns for Green Caradon Against Turbines (CATs), said public opinion had been solidly against the project.

Heritage site

When the former Caradon District Council planners voted against the 80m (262ft) high 1.3 megawatt turbine, they said it would "severely impact" an area of great landscape value.

Cornwall Light and Power (CLP) lodged an appeal and the planning inspector took the view the turbine would be far enough away from two local designated Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty not to have a detrimental effect.

The inspector also found the turbine would not adversely affect the closer Caradon Mining World Heritage Site, on the basis it had been designated because of its social and historical importance rather than for its landscape quality.

But Judge Robinson said the inspector had relied on a 2003 "screening direction" by the Government Office for the South West, made before Caradon's designation as a World Heritage Site.

The Communities Secretary was ordered to pay half of Mr Mageean's legal costs of about £15,000 and Judge Robinson refused the minister permission to appeal against the decision.

After the ruling, Mr Mageean's solicitor Richard Buxton said the Secretary of State will now have to consider whether there should be an environmental impact assessment.

"In particular, he will have to consider whether the proposed development is indeed likely to have significant environmental effects in the light of the designation of a world heritage site so close to the turbine," Mr Buxton said.

Bob Morgan, development manager at CLP, said: "Obviously we are disappointed with the outcome. However, we are now waiting for the official judgement to be published and we will review our options in the light of that."