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Turbines could compromise outer harbour

PUBLISHED: 10:34 20 March 2008 | UPDATED: 10:39 03 July 2010

Revived plans for four giant wind turbines striding across Great Yar-mouth's South Denes could compromise the operation and flexibility of the £50m outer harbour touted as key to the area's regeneration.

Revived plans for four giant wind turbines striding across Great Yar-mouth's South Denes could compromise the operation and flexibility of the £50m outer harbour touted as key to the area's regeneration.

Jobs and tourism benefits hinge on the success of the development due to open in the first quarter of next year after decades on the back burner.

But its builder and operator EastPort UK is concerned about the impact of the 220ft turbines, first proposed a decade ago and said to be capable of turning wind into energy for 18pc of the borough's homes.

Planning permission for the structures was granted on appeal in May 2000 when householders on both sides of the River Yare worried about flicker, views and property prices were told that the structures could be spinning by the end of the year.

Now the company behind the scheme, Gloucester-based Ecotricity, is asking the borough council to again extend its three-year permission which was renewed in 2005 and expires next month.

EastPort chief executive Eddie Freeman said although he was broadly in favour of the green effort, the turbines could hinder operations, adding: “We will be objecting to it.

“The locations indicated could undermine what we are doing structurally and undermine our flexibility. One of the locations is in our container yard.”

Peter Warner, head of planning at Great Yarmouth Borough Council, said officers would look closely at the application, focusing on the impact on the outer harbour.

He said: “We now have EastPort and the question is whether or not these turbines affect the operation and function of EastPort and we are consulting with them.”

The turbines, which will stand head and shoulders above Nelson's Monument, are planned to be sited on a north-to-south axis running from where the granite rocks are stored at the moment, to the end of South Beach Parade, the JH Bunn site and a site south of Hartmann Road.

Borough planners refused the original planning application in 1999, saying the scale and position would significantly affect people on both the Great Yarmouth and Gorleston sides of the river.

Public opposition was strong, with concerns spanning visual intrusion and television interference.

However, planning inspector Dean Burrows overturned the council's decision, saying the impact of the development was acceptable.

In 1998, a report earmarked South Denes as a possible location for a windfarm.

Ecotricity is also the company behind the Somerton windfarm.

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