THE owners of green belt land near Ulley where a controversial wind farm could be built have told campaigners that they need the money the development would bring to maintain a 17th century Renishaw Hall.
Agents for Sitwell Estates, who own Renishaw Hall, said that allowing wind turbines on their land near Ulley would bring in Government funding needed to fund the upkeep of the stately home and its grounds.
In a letter to the Penny Hill Wind Farm Action Group, Tim Shuldham, from property agents Shuldham Calverly, explained that the Government did not support stately homes financially.
He said that revenue from a wind farm project—which would receive financial backing from the Government—could provide valuable income for the estate.
Mr Shuldham said: “The estate operates within a huge number of constraints imposed by Government and without any assistance from Government in the upkeep of not only Renishaw Hall, but all the other listed buildings on the estate.
Wind farm would be a risk to health say campaigners.
“Generating sufficient revenue is a constant challenge and the use of the estate’s land for a wind farm is one of the very few opportunities to generate additional revenue that’s actually supported by the Government.”
One anti-wind farm campaigner said that the view of Sitwell Estates was indicative of a NIMBY attitude all-too-often directed at the campaigners themselves.
She said: “Seeking to save one rural location by sacrificing another miles down the road is not the way forward.
“If a wind farm was proposed for green belt land near Renishaw Hall I would expect their point-of-view to be very different.”
The Earl of Halifax’s Estates, who also own part of the green belt land which could be occupied by the wind farm proposed by Banks Developments, also responded to a recent letter from campaigners.
In it, Thomas Campion, agent for the trustees of the Earl of Halifax’s Settlements, suggested that any short-term concerns about the impact of the wind farm could be “mitigated satisfactorily.”
He said that long-term fears that the green belt could be lost for future generations as a result of the scheme would be allayed by legal agreements between the land owners and the developers.
Mr Campion stated: “The reinstatement clauses contained within any legal agreement between the wind farm operator and the landlord require these bases to be removed and reinstatement to agricultural land when the turbines are decommissioned.”