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Rhosygilwen Mansion wind turbine expected to be refused due to airport safety fears

Wind Turbine Generic

PLANS for a 200-foot-high wind turbine to power a north Pembrokeshire mansion and arts charity home are expected to be refused due to fears it would threaten the safe operation of the nearby West Wales Airport.

Mr and Mrs G Peters of Western Solar Ltd are seeking permission for a single turbine on land near the Grade II-listed Rhosygilwen Mansion, which includes an arts and functions building known as Neuaddydderwen.

The application for the 62-metre-high turbine and associated works, is to be considered at the January meeting of Pembrokeshire County Council’s planning committee.

The application, supported by Cilgerran Community Council, is recommended for refusal for several reasons, including harm to the setting of the Grade-II-listed house and grounds, and threats to the safe operation of West Wales Airport at Aberporth in neighbouring Ceredigion, some 9.5 kilometres away.

Agent and specialist renewable energy developer Infinite Renewables Limited, in its supporting statement, says the proposed turbine would supply the large majority of power required to run the mansion’s heat pump during the winter, replacing the existing solar system.

“The survival of the business, the Pembrokeshire Retreat and Menter Rhosygilwen (the arts charity) which are conducted at Neuaddydderwen and the mansion, is dependent on lower energy costs.  Winter imports of energy forced closure in 2022/23 due to high energy bills,” it adds.

A report for planners says the airport manager at West Wales Airport has objected to the proposed development due to possible interference with radar systems.

“He states that under the Air Navigation Order 2016, West Wales Airport has a statutory duty to safeguard its radio navigation aids and must be able to demonstrate to the Civil Aviation Authority that any decisions to relax any safeguarding obligations are based on sound technical evidence,” the report says.

However, an aviation consultant advising Infinite Renewables Limited has indicated that, technically, West Wales Airport is a non-radar airport as it does not provide radar services for aircraft arriving and departing the airfield, adding operations are only under Visual Flight Rules and the aerodrome provides Aerodrome Flight Information only.

The consultant concludes the turbine would not have any effect on the physical safeguarding of the aerodrome and that there would be no effect on the delivery of services, which is disputed by the airport manager.

The application will be heard at the January 9 meeting at County Hall, Haverfordwest.

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