Planning Application withdrawn

Banks Renewables have announced that they have withdrawn their application for the Killington wind farm. This means that there will be no Public Inquiry (PI), and it is the end of this application.

The Dales Gateway Group, which STAK supported, had put together a strong case for the PI and we were confident of succeeding. The PI would, in fact, have been an opportunity for all the evidence to be properly tested and could have put an end to the wind farm for good.

Banks have cited ‘political uncertainty’ and among reasons the for withdrawing . This link to their Press Release gives more information

One factor that Banks always ignore is that their so-called letters of support are not letters at all, but just signed pro-formas garnered in towns such as Kendal, Grange and Ulverston. In contrast, virtually all the letters of objection were individually written.

Many people have given thousands of hours of unpaid time to fight this wind farm. It has been a David and Goliath battle we felt compelled to fight to protect our cherished landscape.

Our legal team included a barrister and three expert witnesses, so we have already incurred substantial costs. We will now be assessing what the future situation is likely to be, and will keep you updated as soon as we know more.

We would like to express our sincere thanks to all those of you who have so generously supported us with donations.



Posted in Timeline

Public Inquiry announced

A Public Inquiry for the Killington wind farm was due to start on September 23rd 2014, and had been scheduled for 8 days.

It was an unusual situation: On Jan 30th 2014 the SLDC planning committee, to everyone’s astonishment, approved the application, going against the Planning Officer’s recommendation of refusal. However, a request was made jointly by FELLS (Friends of Eden, Lakeland and Lunesdale Scenery), the Yorkshire Dales Society and Friends of the Lake District, to the Secretary of State (SoS ) at the Dept Communities and Local Government to ‘call-in’ the decision. This was on planning grounds, as the SLDC committee had not properly considered the planning issues set out by the Officer. The SoS agreed, and ordered the Public Inquiry.

We would have been facing a Public Inquiry even if SLDC’s decision had been to refuse the application. Banks would inevitably have Appealed, leading to a Public Inquiry.

A Public Inquiry is a quasi-legal process presided over by an independent Inspector appointed by the Planning Inspectorate (PINS).

A so-called ‘Rule 6 Party’ was formed, called the Dales Gateway Group (DGG) to represent all the local groups (including STAK) and parishes who objected to the wind farm proposal. This is to co-ordinate all the submissions of evidence and avoid repetition, and gives full legal status and participation rights to the group.

Both sides are represented by barristers, which is a great expense for voluntary groups such as ourselves. It is very much a David and Goliath battle, against a developer, Banks Renewables, with considerable resources, as well as in time and manpower. We have to rely entirely on donations and fund raising, and dedicated members of our group have already put in many hundreds of hours towards building up our case.

Landscape issues are the major grounds for fighting this wind farm proposal at the Inquiry. It was our very last chance to stop these monstrous turbines blighting our wonderful views, fells and countryside and to halt the march of turbines in the area between the two National Parks.


Posted in Timeline


The SLDC Planning Officer’s report is now published and his recommendation to the planning committee is refusal.  Let’s hope the committee follow his advice.  The full report can be seen at:-
Click on Agenda Reports Pack and go to Page 13.
p.13 Report starts
p15 Response of Killington and NH
p16 Response of Firbank & Lambrigg PM
p17 Response of Sedbergh
p18 Response of Dent, OH and Casterton
p19 Response of Mansergh, Grayrigg PM
p20/21 Response of YDNPA
p22 Response of LDNPA
p23 to 28 Response of CCC (includes Highways, Archeology, Energy contribution, CWESPD, and photomontage update on p.27.
p.28 Deals with changes in planning policy
p29 Response of Eden DC and Craven DC
p30-34 Response of NE (includes ornithology on p.31 and Killington Reservoir on p.31)
p35 Response of RSPB
p36 Response of CWT
p37-39 Response of Killington Wildlife Group (p38 refers to Dr Tim Reed, independent ornithlogy expert)
p40 Response of Highways Agency, Defence, CAA, Canal & Rivers Trust and EA
p41 Response of Telecoms
p41 Response of Killington Wind Energy Support Group
p41-47 STAK (p42 ref to flawed ornithology, p43 to ‘ornithology reconsultation’)
p44-48 FELLS
p48 Response of YDS
p49-51 Response of FOLD, FORCE and KL Civic Society
p52 Response of Killington Sailing Association and Radiation-free Lakeland (SUPPORTING)
p53 Response of Open Spaces Soc., Shell UKJ and Electricity NW
p53 States there were1045 objections and 1245 letters and e-mails in support (no mention that support letters are almost all petition standard lettters)
p54 Lists the arguments presented in SUPPORT (which refers to the Killington ballot)
p55 Representations from the applicant
p56-57 Policy issues (refers to EN3, NPPF, July 2013 statement in Parliament etc)
p58 Refers to energy output and quotes Pickles paper ‘… relevant if finely balanced’
p59 Refers to Local Plan Policies – specific references to BROADBAND in CS7.4
p60 Says site is across two Landscape Character Types (11b and 9b)
p60 Discusses the CWE SPD
p61 ‘Policy Summary’
FROM P62 is a section called Assessments 
p62 deals with SLDC’s own commissioned LVIA
p63 M6 and A684 detractors and urbanising. But it considers there is CI in both Lancs and Cumbria Consultant OBJECTS and refers to STAK LVIA
p64 Gulls and Osprey ‘.. considers further mitigation for osprey not necessary’
p65 Banks recalculations of houses supplied and CO2 saved (allowing or the one-turbine shut down in Spring). Stll over-stated.
p67 BROADBAND a definite plus
p67-68 CONCLUSIONS and recommendation to refuse
p69-82 NPS LVIA Report
p.82 NPS conclusions and states it objects.
Posted in Timeline

RSPB objects


The RSPB has now sent an objection to SLDC, which shows that the harm to birds is compelling as they do not often oppose turbines. Killington Lake is on a major north-south migration route through the Lune Valley, and is a haven for many species of birds, which make the site particularly unsuitable for a wind farm. The RSPB’s objection is based on the danger to migrating ospreys, breeding waders (such as snipe and curlew), and black-headed gulls, birds rare or in serious national decline. The RSPB have been in contact with the developer, Banks Renewables, but concluded that no mitigation of the harm could be devised. Planning policy requires that mitigation of harm has to be taken into account.

The wind turbines would kill ospreys and prevent the area becoming a breeding site for them. Ospreys are already slowly extending their breeding range into England and this could be facilitated with nesting platforms at Killington. It has worked elsewhere at several sites.  The Bassenthwaite ospreys are said by the Forestry Commission to produce £millions for the Cumbrian economy.

Black-headed gulls are in decline and their breeding site on an island in the Lake would be threatened. The colony is the largest in Cumbria by far and is of national significance.

The RSPB thus adds to the list of important consultees who have objected, including Cumbria County Council, Yorkshire Dales National Park, Natural England, Friends of the Lake District and Cumbria Wildlife Trust. The RSPB’s objection is on SLDC’s website, as is that of the Killington Wildlife Group, who are the expert ornithologists locally.  STAK’s detailed critique of Banks’ ornithological assessment is also on SLDC’s website, but if you would like a copy, please send an email to .

Posted in Timeline


Most consultees have sent objections to SLDC about the Killington wind farm. These include: Cumbria County Council, Natural England, YDNP, Friends of Lake District, Yorkshire Dales Society.

All local parishes except one have sent objections to SLDC. They are: Sedbergh, Old Hutton, New Hutton, Firbank, Grayrigg, Lambrigg, Middleton, Mansergh, Casterton. Barbon decided not to comment.

Killington, where no-one can see the turbines and the part-landowners of the site are resident, supported the proposal – although over one third (36%) of those who voted were opposed. Killlington has objected to all previous wind farm and turbine applications.

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John Muir Trust Poll .. save scenic places


YouGov poll shows public favour the protection of scenic wild land over the building of commercial wind farms.

Polls commissioned by the renewables industry have focussed on whether people support wind power as part of the UK’s energy mix. But the YouGov poll is significant as it demonstrates that public support for the general idea of wind power cannot be interpreted as approval for the siting of obtrusive turbines on scenic landscapes.This could have a big impact on tourism revenue.

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CCC says No More

 The Chairman of Cumbria County Council, Eddie Martin, says  ‘Wind farm Obsession will ruin Lakes Economy’ 
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