THE impact of the proposed wind farm for the Dorset coast will be discussed in Bournemouth tonight on the eve of the planning application being submitted.
It is thought that Navitus Bay Development Limited, which wants to build the park that could contain up to 194 turbines as high as 200m, will be submitting its application to the Planning Inspectorate tomorrow, finally revealing its exact proposals.
Tonight, following a request from the Poole and Christchurch Bays Association, which represents 43 residents’ associations and opposes the development, Bournemouth Borough Council’s Special Environment and Transport Overview and Scrutiny Panel will meet at the town hall at 6pm.
See all our stories on Navitus Bay in our archive here
It will look at the potential for excess noise – during both construction and operation – and the impact on wildlife.
The panel will receive presentations from both the association and the council’s executive director for environment and economy, Bill Cotton, who will outline its role in the planning process, to be managed by the Planning Inspectorate.
Philip Dewhurst, from PCBA, said: “We welcome any opportunity to present the facts about this huge industrial development.
“The developers do, of course, have huge financial resources to get their side of the story across, so it is only right and proper that we, the local residents, are given access to local decision makers.
“We strongly urge local councils and other statutory consultees to oppose this scheme, which is far too big, too close to our beautiful shoreline and threatening to our tourism lifeblood.
“With the national tide now turning against giant wind farms of this type, we hope that our heritage coastline is saved.”
Cllr Mark Anderson, chairman of the panel, said he had received concerns over wildlife and noise.
“I felt that it was therefore important for the committee to accept Mr Cotton’s report before the Local Impact Report was produced and that we should investigate these concerns of our residents and if necessary make representation to cabinet and/or the council about them, we will therefore be investigating these two issues at our meeting,” he added.
The development would be 12 miles from Christchurch, 13 from Bournemouth and Poole and nine from Swanage.
The papers for tonight’s meeting – including the presentations that will be given – can be seen at Bournemouth.gov.uk
A public meeting has also been organised, to be held at the BIC on Sunday, May 10, to discuss all sides of the debate.