1. Hendy Wind Farm at Llandegley Rocks near Penybont P/2014/0672:
You have probably heard that Powys Council have announced their intention to bring this application before the Planning Committee on the 27th April, next Thursday. This highly controversial 2014 application is for 7 wind turbines of height 110m, together with substation, control building, access tracks etc. The application number is P/2014/0672 and documents, consultee responses and objections can be found on the application website here. The agenda for the Planning Committee meeting containing the Officer’s Report and recommendation will be posted on this link . It is not currently available (at 20 April 2017). Until we have this we cannot know whether the Planning Officer will or will not be recommending approval.
It is concerning that this contentious application is being brought to committee during election purdah, and before the publication on 12th May of the revised reports to support renewable energy policy in the LDP. We understand that the Council is waiting for landscape reports informing LDP policy on wind and solar developments in the county. This would seem to be vital information to inform any decision on this application.
27th April is also the very important day in the LDP Examination, where the Inspector will consider safeguarding of assets including landscape, biodiversity, the historic environment and public rights of way. Powys County Council must be aware that many people would like to attend both meetings.
The site of this application was not included in a wind Local Search Area in the proposals put forward in late 2016 as (according to the Met Office average annual wind speed data supporting the consultant AECOM’s Renewable Energy Assessment) having insufficient wind to be economically viable as ‘wind resource’.
2. Local Elections 4th May:
This is a very good opportunity to ask candidates what they will do about those issues which concern rural residents in Powys, including not only service provision, but also protection of local landscapes and biodiversity, and promotion of the interests of tourism and agriculture businesses, key to our rural prosperity. We are sure we are not alone in hoping that our new councillors will be looking to make some significant changes in the manner in which our council operates and ensure that they are running a professional and truly accountable local authority, which listens to the concerns of local people. Details of candidates can be found here (opens as a PDF) and contact details should be provided on the candidates’ campaign literature.
When it comes to the LDP it is important that all candidates understand that:
– Until the LDP is finalised, the UDP remains the County’s planning tool. It is not true, as our current Cabinet have said, that in the interim Powys is without planning law.
– Powys Council must take responsibility for the proposed Local Search Areas which have caused so much anger and distress. No doubt there was significant Welsh Government pressure, but that cannot excuse the Council’s total failure to defend the county and residents, or their decision to allow AECOM (a company with connections in the renewable industries) to effectively write renewable policy for the county.
3. Brecon and Radnor Action Group Fundraiser 11 May 2017:
Please see here (opens as a PDF). This promises to be an enjoyable musical evening supporting an important cause.
CPRW Brecon & Radnor Committee