Many of the parish will recall attending a meeting some years ago to hear a proposal to install two wind turbines near Norton. This was a community based power scheme, which met with considerable concern.
Things are blowing in the wind again. Origin Energy Ltd. are proposing to erect two wind turbines in White Ley Plantation. The plantation forms part of Barnsdale Wood which is subject to rumours, speculation, folklore and probable hard fact that Robin Hood stomped around this part of the greenery in preference to Sherwood Forest. Even Russell Crowe based his 2010 film interpretation of the tale of Robin Hood on Barnsdale Forest ( as it was then).
The contentious site of the wind turbines is within one mile of Robin Hood’s Well and Burghwallis. Steve Carney, director of Origin Energy explained “There is a small wooded area called White Ley Plantation on our site. It is tiny and contains trees that are not the original native ones and are relatively young.” He neglected to say how his 50metre wind turbines would blend into this ancient landscape.
Campaigners in Norton, Campsall and Sutton are attempting to get Barnsdale Wood recognised as “ancient woodland.” Whilst this may not provide any planning law protection Natural England are delving into past records to see if this could invoke a element of the Governments National Planning Policy which states that planning committees should give extra consideration to any development which could impact on historic habitats.
Barsndale Wood/forest has been shown on records since 1600. and now needs the help of local residents and descendants of Robin to step out of the greenery to state their case, but time is running out. The Sheriff will make his decision early next year.