The chief executive officer of specialist conference hotel on the banks of the River Thames in West London, The Lensbury, has called for a judicial review of the Ham Hydro scheme at Teddington weir.
Lacy Curtis-Ward said the venue, which has been the training centre for the New Zealand All Blacks, as part of the Rugby World Cup, had instructed lawyers to launch legal action to block the building of a series of hydroelectric turbines on the Thames close to The Lensbury.
She told CN: “The Lensbury supports the development of hydropower on Teddington Weir but not the application approved last week by Richmond Planning Committee. The significant flaws in the design of the plant have led to a series of Objections, backed by expert reports. We have notified the council of our intention to seek a Judicial Review.”
More than 1,300 local residents signed a petition against the project.
Curtis-Ward said there were a number of problems with the application, including the fact that no environmental impact study had been done.
Richmond council’s plans as they stand could lead to three turbines being erected close to the venue.
A council planning meeting had approved the scheme on 16 September by seven votes to two.
David Dechambeau, director of Southeast Power Engineering, which is managing the project, called the Ham Hydro a “first-class example” of a clean energy project and said the turbines would not be noisy.
“Technology has moved on and we are confident there will be minimal disruption.”