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Page last updated at 12:25 GMT, Monday, 10 May 2010 13:25 UK
Council turn down EDF plans for digging up Hinkley
Hinkley Point B
Currently Hinkley Point has got one power station in operation

Campaigners fighting plans for a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point say it's a mini 'David and Goliath' victory.

But are they reading too much into it?

The French energy giant EDF, which is planning to build the new Hinkley Point C, have had a planning application to dig some trenches turned down.

They're digging temporary trenches in lots of spots around Hinkley Point to see what lies underground before they plan exactly where to build.

They wanted to dig 20 of them on the edge of the village of Shurton - but West Somerset District Council said no.

Stop Hinkley campaigner Jim Duffy said: "I think EDF may have sound reasons for doing this but I think what they are finding is that they are rubbing up the public in the wrong way.

"Councillors have some responsibility to the people living in the area and the planning committee has in a way stood up to EDF in a way that us and a lot of other people would be applauding."

I think the committee felt it was premature to allow works in an area which was too close to the living areas.
Andrew Goodchild

Planning manager for West Somerset Council, Andrew Goodchild, said the committee turned down the application because the work included exploration in fields closed to Shurton and Burton.

He said as part of the stage one consultation on the plans for Hinkley Point, local residents had called for the construction site to be moved as far north as possible.

"Residents have given their views and EDF haven't responded yet. I think the committee felt it was premature to allow works in an area which was too close to the living areas."

EDF's Simon Dunford said they were surprised by the decision as they have also been carrying out samplings in Williton and Cannington.

He said once they understood the reason why the application was refused they will look to find a way to find an alternate way.

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