May 18, 2014

Some positive news in fight against wind turbines…

As usual, it has been a busy couple of weeks.

The other Saturday I had the privilege to open the Flower Festival in Stoke Hammond in my constituency.

I thoroughly enjoyed myself, as usual, and not least because it was surprisingly good weather for the time of year. I must confess that, being a traditional Englishman, I tend to associate the phrase “spring” with force eight gales and horizontal rain

No, the mood was upbeat owing, I think, to the news that the proposal to erect four wind turbines at Dorcas Lane has been “recovered” by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Rt Hon Eric Pickles, for his personal consideration.

This is an excellent development. I have been working closely with the excellent Stop Dorcas Lane Turbines group (SDLT) for a number of years now, and their dogged determination to ensure that Stoke Hammond residents will not have to suffer this development is to be highly commended.

Although the Secretary of State indicated at the end of 2013 that he was not inclined to recover the application, SDLT and myself made a further, last ditch, appeal to his judgement earlier in the year, citing a number of reasons why the application merited his attention.

I was delighted to learn that he agreed with our submission, and that he will be reviewing the merits (or, in this case, lack thereof) of the turbine proposal.

Bucks Herald readers may be aware of a similar proposal in Dinton, in the south of the Buckingham constituency which the Secretary of State is also reviewing.

In neither case does his interest indicate that we will ultimately get the outcomes we want, but it is a very welcome development and I remain hopeful of a positive resolution.

After the Flower Festival it was off to the Haddenham celebrations on the village green, before I headed off to Princes Risborough for meetings with constituents.

Perhaps it was the weather – the continuing threat of HS2 is never far from my thoughts, as I know is the case with many of my constituents – but the sight of our beautiful area in bloom certainly put a spring in my step.

Long may it last.
This article was first published in The Bucks Herald.