People living near Ilkley, Otley and Pool are being warned about the impact on their areas if “the largest onshore wind farm in England” is allowed to go ahead.

Campaigners say 28 turbines planned for the Harrogate area would combine with eight turbines at Knabs Ridge to create a massive wind farm visible for 30 miles around.

Save the Dales says the first application for seven 100-metre turbines at land off Penny Pot Lane has been submitted to Harrogate Borough Council, with a further two applications expected to follow, one for 17 125-metre turbines at Haverah Park, and another for four 115-metre turbines adjoining the other two schemes at High Boar Wind Farm. The initial application has been submitted by Kelda, which is also expected to submit the 17-turbine proposal. A second company – Tapar – has said it intends to seek permission for the four-turbine scheme.

Campaigner, Geoff Binns, said the turbines would have a “severe visual impact on large areas of lower Wharfedale”.

He added: “Very few residents of this beautiful area have any idea of these proposals, and those I have spoken to that do, have assumed it is just a local Harrogate matter and they have no need to be concerned.”

Another objector, Gerry Smith, said: “It is believed approval of the first application for seven 100 metre turbines will set the prec-edent to force later approval for the much larger four turbines, followed by approval for the 17.

“From Kelda’s own theoretical assessment, the seven turbines will most likely be visible from large areas to the north and south of Otley, Pool and Ilkley, including the moors.

“The subsequent four and 17 turbines would then be visible from a much greater area of lower Wharfedale. The cumula-tive impact of 36 giant turbines would undoubtedly dominate the skyline for miles around. We would urge people to lodge an objection to this first planning application – there are just a few weeks left to do so.”