A meeting on the 4th February 2021 of the Project Liaison Group representatives which Middleton-on-Sea Parish Council are represented on took place to discuss the latest updates with regard to the Rampion 2 project.
Below are two links, one with regard to the minutes of the meeting with a Q&A session and the second is a slide presentation from Rampion.
The Arun District Design Guide has been prepared as a Supplementary Planning Document to provide further guidance on design policies contained within Arun’s Local Plan. While the guide is a material consideration in Arun District Council’s decision making, the design solutions specified within are guidance only, and alternative approaches may be acceptable when sufficiently justified and after the local authority’s approval.. The level of information contained in planning applications should be relevant and proportionate to the nature of the development proposed, and master plans are encouraged to display appropriate innovation in relation to the context of the site
To review the Design Guide please use the link below
The Parish Council accepts no responsibility with regard to the contents of the article below from some local residents. The Parish Council have decided that the article can go onto the parish website but the views expressed are not necessarily those of the Parish Council at this time
There is the possibility of Rampion wishing to respond to this article and again the Parish Council will consider the contents before agreeing to place it on the Parish Council website for residents to review.
The Parish Council are waiting for more detailed important information onRampion 2 before deciding whether to support Rampion 2or not and will consider residents opinions before making a final decision
We are all aware of the existing Rampion wind farm. Tackling climate change is a national and global priority but, like any other aspect of the built environment, a wind farm needs to be sensitively and rationally planned to minimize harm.
A new wind farm, Rampion 2, is being proposed that does not minimize harm at all. Rather than an ‘extension’, it is a wholly different enterprise to Rampion 1 in many respects, requiring a new cable link to the National Grid, running from Clymping beach to a new 11-acre substation in Bolney – continuing the disturbance already caused there. What is being proposed risks bringing deleterious changes to the social, economic and natural environment of West Sussex.
The developers suggest that the new proposal means that the existing Rampion will ‘double in size’. On BBC South Today (on 14th January 2021), they justified this by saying the new wind farm would have the same number of turbines as Rampion 1. The proposal is indeed for up to 116 turbines, the same number as in Rampion 1.
However, the new turbines will be very much larger and more powerful, so they will have to be spread out very much more. Taken together with the existing wind farm, the total power would be four times the size (going from 400MW to 1600MW) and potentially spread out to cover up to five times the area, fencing in the Sussex Bay from Newhaven to Selsey Bill. To talk of merely ‘double in size’ is misleading.
In public presentations, the developers have often left the impression that the new turbines would be only 50% taller. However, the turbines could be significantly larger at 2.35 times the height – each one taller than the Eiffel Tower. And, given their positioning across a southern bay, with the sun behind them, and given that the blades of each turbine will cover nearly 4 times the swept area of an existing Rampion turbine, they will be very visible pretty much all the time. They would dominate the daytime horizon as dark and huge industrial towers – with flashing red lights at night.
Some of this height and size data is buried on page 399 of Rampion’s 970-page Scoping Report published on the government planning website – and is discreetly referred to on one of the banners in their virtual exhibition.
When viewed from various locations along the coast, the new turbines would appear even taller still. The graphic above shows how from Middleton on Sea, for example, they would appear around 4 times taller than those of the existing Rampion (assuming the observer is 5m above sea level, standing on the edge of the greensward; the Earth curvature has been accounted for).
The proposed Rampion 2 is also an inshore – not offshore – wind farm. Five years ago, wind farms in the UK were on average 17 ½ miles offshore . By 2019, the average for EU wind farms had increased to 37 miles . The Prime Minister has announced a new target of 40GW of wind power by 2030 (increased from 30GW), with wind farms sited ‘far out in the deepest waters’ (6/10/20).
Government Guidelines (OESEA2 ) recommend all new wind farms should be in offshore waters (i.e. more than 14 miles from the shore), and that for the larger turbines proposed they should be at least 25 miles offshore (OESEA3) for low visible impact.
Rampion 2 completely ignores all this. It would be sited almost wholly within INSHORE waters, only 8 miles from shore.
NOWHERE on the UK Coast are there such large turbines so close to the shore (in operation, under construction, or with a planning application filed)
If the proposed Rampion 2 inshore project goes ahead, the impact spreads wide. Only last year, David Attenborough explicitly expressed concern that ‘dredging to install cable to offshore wind farms changes the seabed and its wildlife forever’ . This forbidding fence of massive turbines is also likely to cause the coastal economy in West Sussex to go further into decline. Those who come here for the sea views and invest in the area will increasingly shun this part of the Sussex bay – choosing to go to more attractive locations instead. Unless the wind farm were moved more than 13 miles further offshore, it would have a significant impact on key viewpoints in the South Downs National Park. When the SDNP was designated, great weight was given by the Planning Inspector to the quality of the seascape and the extensive and uninterrupted views from the South Downs out to sea.
The Rampion 2 developers are not considering going further offshore, however, and claim they cannot do this due to shipping only a few miles further out. This is effectively an admission that the West Sussex bay is not a suitable site.
Elsewhere – such as the Dorset Navitus Bay wind farm proposed in 2015 – the Planning Inspectorate has turned down applications due to visual impact on designated sites and potential harm to the local economy. The visual footprint of Navitus Bay was only slightly larger than that of the current Rampion 1 – with the latter itself deemed to be only just acceptable for visual impact on the SDNP when consented in July 2014. But Rampion 2 would be very much taller and larger and would span over 100 degrees of the horizon from several viewpoints. The harm of Rampion 2 would, therefore, be very much more significant than Rampion 1 and, like the Navitus Bay project, should be rejected.
There is a greener way forward. The Crown Estate has just announced (Round 4 Tender stage 2 ) a new tender opportunity for leasing other wind farms in the North Sea. There remains over 145 times the area that Rampion 2 would require – far more than enough to meet the entire UK 2050 net-zero target. And there is no visual harm.
This area is completely different from the Sussex Bay. Wind farms can be 100 miles offshore on Dogger Bank, for example, and in shallow water. They can connect to the new National Grid offshore network transmission that the government has confirmed in the December 2020 Energy White paper . This will provide a much more stable and secure link, obviate any extra direct connection to shore, will be more reliable and will not only power the UK but also allow us to export to the EU in times of strong winds when we have too much wind capacity – instead of paying the operators to switch off.
HAVE YOUR SAY and encourage Rampion’s developers to invest instead in an alternative project in the North Sea – or even in an extension to the Sofia wind farm that they are developing there. Write to your MP and other representatives – and be sure to use the very narrow Rampion ‘consultation’ [Rampion2.com ] to reject Rampion 2 very firmly. Suggest, for example, that the proposed area of search should be at least 25 miles from shore – and, for each of the other harms, point out that none would be necessary with a wind farm sited in the North Sea.
https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/wp-content/ipc/uploads/projects/EN010117/EN010117-000006-EN010117%20-%20Scoping%20Report.pdf Prof. Gordon Hughes, University of Edinburgh https://www.ref.org.uk/ref-blog/365-wind-power-economics-rhetoric-and-reality https://windeurope.org/wp-content/uploads/files/about-wind/statistics/WindEurope-Annual-Offshore-Statistics-2019.pdf https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/195387/OESEA2_NTS.pdf Wildlife Trusts Marine review 2020 https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/news/wildlife-trusts-marine-review-2020 https://www.thecrownestate.co.uk/en-gb/what-we-do/on-the-seabed/offshore-wind-leasing-round-4/ https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/945899/201216_BEIS_EWP_Command_Paper_Accessible.pdf https://www.innovision.ie/rampion2
Following an appeal by Frontier Estates Ltd to the refusal of the first planning application for a 66 bedroom care home on the Poultry Farm site in Yapton Road by Arun District Council, the Planning Inspectorate have now allowed the appeal and planning permission has been granted.
The Inspector has stated that,
The proposed development would not result in harm to the character and appearance of the area with particular respect to trees.
Design of the building is acceptable.
TPO trees should not be damaged or destroyed as a result of the proposed development
No increase to flood risk
Adequate on-site parking – no severe impact on the road network nor an unacceptable effect on the living conditions of nearby occupiers.
The provision of the care home would bring substantial benefits – proposed development would provide an important contribution to this essential housing need for some of the most vulnerable people in society.
Proposed development would result in the redevelopment of an under-utilised piece of land which is close to an existing settlement
This site now has three approved planning applications, one for the development of 13 houses and two versions of the care home and we now wait to see which option Frontier Estates will proceed with, it is anticipated that it will be one of the two care home options.
West Sussex County Council & Arun District Council
Information around the different support available for families including children eligible for Free School Meals (FSM) vouchers and support for those who have been financially impacted by the pandemic can be found by contacting the Parish Clerkat [email protected] or telephone 01243 585262 who will provide details on who to contact on the different avenues that offer access to advice and support.
The information covers:
Free School Meals – eligibility criteria
Free School Meal Vouchers – School holidays, redeeming vouchers, Term Time and frequently asked questions on how the scheme works
Other Support Available – support for fuel or utility bills, council tax and rent
To approve the Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 20th January 2021.
Declarations of Interest
Public Discussion Period (Maximum 20 minutes – Limited to 3 minutes per speaker)
Matters arising and Committee Reports
Financial reports and payments approved
Any Other Business (For noting or inclusion on a future agenda)
Note: If members of the public or press would like to attend this meeting remotely using your own device please contact the Parish Clerk on 01243 585262 0r by email [email protected] for details on how to attend.
7 North Avenue East, Middleton-on-Sea, Bognor Regis, West Sussex PO22 6HQ
Last week saw the launch of the West Sussex Climate Conversation. An opportunity for you and local residents to input and get involved in the Climate Change Conversation and work in West Sussex. The information gathered will be used by Councils across West Sussex to help support residents and businesses to continue with, or start more, positive actions.
Parish & Town Council: Please take the time to complete the survey on behalf of your Parish & Town Council as I know that we have all experienced the impact in the way we work this year. Also have an opportunity to input any thoughts your council has around how it is considering or delivering actions around climate change in your area.
Residents & Businesses: Please share through your networks and promote on your website the survey link below for a opportunity for residents and businesses to participate
Press Release: Take part in the West Sussex Climate Conversation
People in West Sussex are being invited to take part in a survey to find out how Covid-19 restrictions have affected their response to climate change.
The West Sussex Climate Conversation will look at how our behaviour has changed during the pandemic – for example working from home or exploring locally – and how this has affected our local environment.
Information gathered will be used by Councils across West Sussex to help support residents and businesses to continue with, or start more, positive actions.
Deborah Urquhart, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “We want to hear from our residents to understand what they are now doing differently as a result of the pandemic and how this could help our response to climate change.
“Covid-19 has presented us with some extremely challenging and difficult times, but in some circumstances, it has created opportunities for us to look at how we live our lives and how we might be able to change for the better in the future.”
West Sussex County Council has recently adopted a Climate Change Strategy for the next ten years, which includes a commitment to become carbon neutral by 2030.
Deborah added: “Climate change continues to be a critical issue to address. We want to use this opportunity to see how we can help tackle climate adaptation and further encourage positive environmental changes we have seen this year.”
The survey is being led by Local Partnerships, a body set up to support councils in tackling challenges and to share their findings.
Last month West Sussex County Council launched a new online form, on their website, for reporting potholes. They want to improve the experience of reporting a pothole and have developed an interactive map displaying all reported potholes, so that customers can identify if already reported and to subscribe and receive future updates should they wish to. As this form is a trial they are welcoming customer feedback as they wish to continually improve their offer to Residents. Feedback can be provided by visiting their webpage and clicking on the page link provided.
West Sussex County Council want to add this link to their website for reporting potholes, https://www.westsussex.gov.uk/roads-and-travel/ rather than to Love West Sussex. If you are a regular pothole reporter please can we ask that you support them by using the new pothole form but also to provide valuable insight and feedback.
For the duration of the trial the online reporting of all other enquiries regarding the roads in West Sussex, such as grass cutting, flooding etc, have remained on Love West Sussex.
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