CONCERNS about the visual impact of a proposed Ryedale wind farm have been raised by a neighbouring local authority.

A report into the proposal at Heslerton, to the east of Malton, was carried out by Scarborough Borough Council in response to a consultation by planning officers at Ryedale District Council.

It said the artist’s impressions of the ten-turbine site submitted with planning application in March showed they would have a significant impact on the landscape of the Wolds, the Vale of Pickering, and the southern edge of the North York Moors.

While the report praised the efforts of developers RWE npower renewables to consider the points put forward by residents of nearby villages, it criticised the photo-montages provided with the planning application.

The report said the images, which were taken in bright sunlight following heavy snowfall, gave “a misleading impression of the prominence of the Wolds as a major landscape feature and blurs the distinction between the Vale of Pickering and the Wolds”.

It also criticised the lack of viewpoints of the proposed 126-metre site from the A170 east of Brompton and the A64, which it felt were “in locations where many more residents, car users or tourists will be aware of the wind farm”.

Martin Wood, from RWE, said: “A huge amount of work has gone into ensuring the design of the East Heslerton Wind Farm is sympathetic to the surrounding area.

“This process required that we consult with a wide range of organisations to understand and respond to any concerns, ahead of finalising our proposals.

“We are aware of the consultation response submitted by Scarborough Borough Council and, as with all the consultation responses submitted, we will give any issues raised due consideration prior to responding to Ryedale District Council.”

Protests about the application, due to go before planners later this month, have been submitted by the British Horse Society, Natural England, English Heritage, the Council to Protect Rural England, and the Ministry of Defence.