Oxford

Plans for Horspath wind turbine scrapped due to radar interference

Controversial plans to build a wind turbine in Oxfordshire have been halted.

It is feared that the 130m tall structure near Horspath, Oxford, would have interfered with nearby RAF radars.

The renewable energy developer, Partnerships for Renewables (PfR), was unable to reach a resolution with the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

Michael Tyce, from the Campaign to protect Rural England (CPRE), said: "It's a victory for common sense."

The CPRE had complained the turbine would have been inefficient and ruin the Oxfordshire skyline.

Mr Tyce said: "This is an issue about the harm that would be done to the green belt and the harm done to the historic heritage of the city of Oxford on which Oxford's economy largely rests."

The site for the turbine was on Oxford City Council land at Oxford Road.

'Detrimental effect'

Tony Duffin, regional manager of Partnerships for Renewables (PfR), said: "This is very disappointing news for all those involved in the project and all our supporters in Oxford.

"Aside from the ongoing radar issues, all our technical studies to date have shown it to be a promising site, including site-specific wind data gathered over the past six months which is in line with all our expectations and estimates.

"Unfortunately the MoD has said that a turbine of this scale will have a detrimental effect on their radar and we have been unable to find a solution to this."

Oxford City Council and PfR are continuing to look for suitable sites for wind turbines.

Councillor John Tanner, board member for Cleaner, Greener Oxford, said: "We won't be blown off course.

"As Didcot Power Station contracts and with the problems with nuclear at Fukushima in Japan, it is clear that we must find ways of building more wind turbines in Oxfordshire."

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