The views expressed in this page do not represent those of the Planning Inspectorate. This page consists of content submitted to the Planning Inspectorate by the public and other interested parties, giving their views of this proposal.
East Anglia ONE North Offshore Windfarm
Received 16 January 2020
From The Revd Mark Lowther
“When I was installed as Rector of the Alde Sandlings Benefice (the parishes of Friston, Knodishall, Aldringham and Aldeburgh) I was given the ‘cure (care) of souls’ of everyone living in those four parishes – it is my duty to care for them. I see the plans submitted by Scottish Power Renewables as a real threat to the wellbeing of the people in my care, particularly, of course, the residents of Friston. I am enormously aware of the stress and strain that the proposals have already put on the villagers – they are frightened and worried. New facts seem to be emerging about which they have not been consulted and if it had not been for the very hard work put in by members of the SASES Working Group there would have been important information unavailable to members of the public severely affected by the proposals. It is no exaggeration to say that some people’s lives will be ruined if the proposals go ahead. As the Parish Priest my principle concern is for the people of the parish and for its ancient (grade 2*-listed) church building. As we have now discovered that the parcel of land required by SPR comes within a few metres of the church building I am most concerned about how that building might continue to be able to serve its purpose. I can foresee real problems with access to the churchyard (particularly during the construction process) for those who wish to tend graves. I can imagine a burial service being interrupted by noise from the construction site. I can imagine huge difficulties caused to parishioners who are simply trying to come to their parish church to worship, to prepare for services or to spend quiet time in prayer. I can imagine couples not wanting to hold a wedding at the church because of the ugliness of its surroundings. Ultimately I can imagine all services in the church having to be held against the background noise of the substation. None of the proposed ‘mitigation’ can compensate for these things. Were the proposals by SPR to go ahead they would utterly change the character of Friston and its surroundings. The enormity of the infrastructure would be a permanent desecration of what is currently a tranquil village. The day-to-day lives of a large proportion of the local residents would be changed for the worse. The construction would cause unbelievable upheaval to the local environment and I fear for the health of those directly affected, not just in Friston but in other parts of the Alde Sandlings Benefice too. For example, the B1069 (Snape Road) in Knodishall has a number of houses that open directly onto the footpath. The lives of the residents of those houses – and of those many children who need to cross the road to access Coldfair Green Primary School, will be made dangerous and difficult by heavy construction traffic. I care deeply about the lives of those for whom I have the ‘cure of souls’ and this objection comes from the heart. I ask the planning authorities to reject the current proposals.”