Green coat guise
My heart goes out to the family at Eden Farm under the tenancy of the Fitzwilliam Trust. This could be taken away even though the Agricultural Holding Act gives security of tenure. All without consultation.
Why should this concern me? The reason becomes clear, a 92,500 solar panel development by Harmony Energy occupying 50% of their farm. Their land is graded 1, 2 and 3a, prime agricultural land and as Harmony says it will be “huge”. Cyclists using the cycle path from Malton to Pickering would have dramatically different views. High fences to stop deer causing damage would also compromise the movement of wildlife.
Is this fuelled by green energy altruism by Harmony and Fitzwilliam Trust? “No”, the 40 year lease would attract an increased rent, higher than could be gained from their tenants. Has Harmony considered other sites? “Yes”, but the close proximity to the substation is their main economical concern.
If we add to the equation Ryedale District Council receiving from Harmony £100,000 per annum in business taxes, the heroes of this renewable energy story start to look tainted. What will happen when RDC is subsumed into a unitary authority? Would Ryedale benefit let alone Malton probably not. Plus this is a conservation area, RDC have a statutory duty to have special regard for its preservation.
When looking at this scenario the motivation is far more one of finance than saving the planet. Why didn’t RDC insist on all the new housing having solar panels?
The lack of public consultation and the haste for planning smacks of an erosion of our rights to debate.
Surely in striving for green renewables we shouldn’t be destroying the countryside we wish to preserve.
I believe this to be a commercial enterprise under the guise of a green cloak.
S Hawes
Grave concerns
We are writing to you to voice my grave concerns regarding FME’s proposal to take 180 acres of agricultural farmland and beautiful countryside for the erection of solar panels. This is land that has been farmed by the same family of tenant farmers for the past 3 generations. This is just the beginning of their proposals as 530 further acres are also being eyed up. When will this all stop? If we, the people who oppose this outrageous proposal, don’t voice our opposition then, as usual, FME will ride rough shod over everyone, including the Ryedale council planning department. What is FME’s justification in this proposal which will ruin a family, who have farmed this land for the past 3 generations, and destroy the wildlife that inhabit these 180 acres?
Perhaps you and your publication can get behind these objections and try to stop FME in their quest for mass destruction to further swell their already overloaded coffers!
Thank you for taking the time to read this and also, in anticipation of your backing.
Ron and Nicole Ferguson