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PLANS to erect a mast 30m higher than the famed Leaning Tower of Pisa in a Denbighshire field have been delayed after concerns about its visual impact.

RWE Renewables has applied to Denbighshire County Council for planning permission to erect the 90-metre-high meteorological mast at land at Mynydd Mynyllod, Llandrillo, near Corwen.

If given the green light, the mast will stand for three years to collect wind data to see whether the field is suitable for a wind farm – and include flashing lights to warn aircraft.

But at a planning committee meeting, Denbighshire councillors deferred their decision, arguing more information was needed about the mast, which is 10m higher than Rhyl Sky Tower.

Llandrillo Community Council had already opposed the plans, insisting the mast would be detrimental to the landscape. The site lies approximately 4.5km from the boundary of the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley
Area of Natural Beauty and 5.5km from Snowdonia National Park.

Cllr Gwyneth Ellis is the local member for Llandrillo and feared the plans could be visually damaging to the area.

“Having read the details in the report, I cannot see what type of visual effect the mast will have,” she said.

“There has been a mast there in the past, which was 70m in height. This mast is going to be 90m, which is almost 30% (20%) higher.

“Also, this mast will have flashing lights on it in order to warm aeroplanes.

“There are wind turbines quite close, small ones, and they are visible from the village, so I suspect that mast will have a huge visual effect. But I would like to have an assessment to see if that is true or not.”

She added: “If the visual assessment does show that there will be a detrimental effect, then I do think that there should be a full consultation. At the moment, I believe there has been a consultation held with a handful of neighbours on the site and with Llandrillo Community Council.”

The proposed mast features galvanised steel tubing and would be supported by guys anchored to the ground. The guy radius is 50 metres, so the diameter of the area within the anchor points is 100 metres in total.

Cllr Gwyneth Ellis proposed that the application should be deferred, requesting more detailed information from the applicant. Cllr Emrys Wynne seconded her proposal, and a vote was taken, 10 votes in favour of deferral with seven against.

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