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Last Updated: Monday, 2 October 2006, 12:41 GMT 13:41 UK
Inquiry upholds windfarm refusal
Wind turbines
Awel Aman Tawe said the windfarm would fund regeneration
Backers of a community wind farm in the upper Swansea Valley have lost their appeal against planning refusal.

The Planning Inspectorate has upheld Neath Port Talbot Council's decision not to grant Awel Aman Tawe permission for three turbines on Mynydd y Gwrhyd.

It was turned down by council planners because of its likely visual impact.

Following a public inquiry earlier in the year inspectors backed the decision, a move welcomed by Labour Neath AM Gwenda Thomas.

"My main concerns were the overbearing visual impact on both Tai'rwaith and Rhiwfawr and the fact that the wind farm would have been outside the TAN 8 strategic search area (SSA)," she said.

There are seven SSAs in Wales chosen by the Welsh Assembly Government as recommended locations for turbines.

Awel Aman Tawe had said profits from the sale of electricity generated by the turbines would be used to fund local regeneration initiatives.

The community group had claimed that of 13,000 local residents in 14 villages surrounding the site there was a "clear majority in favour of the project" in a referendum on the scheme.

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