Battle lines drawn on Polegate Wind Farm application

Pro wind farm supporters for Polegate wind farm, Shepham Lane, Polegate
Pro wind farm supporters for Polegate wind farm, Shepham Lane, Polegate

BATTLE lines have been drawn between supporters and opponents of plans to build five wind turbines near Polegate.

Regeneco, formely Galliford Try Renewables (GTR), is waiting to hear from Wealden District Council after submitting an official application for planning consent to erect the development on land off Shepham Lane. Wealden’s Planning Committee will look at the application this Thursday, July 19.

Some residents have formed a ‘Yes to Polegate Wind Farm’ group, working with Friends of the Earth, and believing the proposal bolstered ‘clean British energy’.

The supporters gathered to show public support at the application site on Wednesday, July 11 .

Resident Mike Hodgson, one of the members of the support group, said: “Everyone expects to turn on their lights at the flick of a switch, but we don’t often think about where the electricity comes from. 

“We are increasingly relying on expensive imports of gas for our energy and these have been responsible for the large hikes in our bills in recent years. Power from a free resource like the wind is good news for Polegate, good news for Sussex and good news for the UK and we want Wealden Council to approve the project next week.”

The proposed wind farm at Polegate could generate enough clean electricity to power 5,590 to 6,900 homes each year – equivalent to the combined number of households in Polegate and Westham.

GTR, as it used to be known, has previously admitted to the Sussex Express that the energy would not be ringfenced directly for Polegate and Westham but bolster the National Grid.

Other residents have expressed outrage at the plans and sent letters outlining a number of different concerns on various issues about the application to Wealden.

Kenneth Saxby, off Hankham near Pevensey, writing on July 8, said 400 listed buildings could be affected.

He wrote: “I submit to Wealden Planning Committee that this planning application fails to meet the fundamental principles of the council’s own policy and does not address in any manner the large number of listed buildings and monuments which will be adversely affected by these proposals.”