Turbine critics slam advert

AN anti-windfarm countryside campaign group has hit out at council advertising that it says promotes turbine development.

The Action for Rural Morpeth (ARM) group, which was initially set up to oppose windfarm plans for land beside the Morpeth to Whalton road, has criticised branding of the LOVE Northumberland initiative that shows three turbines as part of the county’s landscape.

The logo is being used by Northumberland County Council as part of a wide-ranging environmental campaign to reduce litter, fly-tipping, graffiti, vandalism and other problems.

But ARM members say they consider turbines vandalism of the countryside.

And they are furious that taxpayers’ money is being used to promote the image when opinion of windfarms is so divided.

ARM Vice-Chairman Murray Macrae said: “Some aspects of the campaign are okay because it is to report things like fly-tipping and vandalism and that sort of thing, but we are not happy with the wind turbines because it looks like a bit of an endorsement that wind turbines are okay.

“It gives the impression that here is a county that is beautiful with castles and turbines, and the turbines are drawn to look like these friendly things.

“It doesn’t show the farms or the animals, red squirrels or birds.

“We have to assume that it is taxpayers’ money that is paying for these adverts, which seems to suggest that windfarms are okay, but a lot of people don’t think that.

“We say the county council should take a balanced view on this because it is a crucial issue.

“It says in the advert things like don’t spoil the environment. We think that is exactly what the turbines are doing.”

No one at Northumberland County Council was available to comment on the criticism.