Failed appeals to stop wind farms being built have cost taxpayers more than £220,000.

The figure is for Maldon District Council’s costs in defending its decisions against installations at Hockley Farm in Bradwell, Middlewick in Southminster and Turncole Farm, between Southminster and Burnham.

In each case, the council had refused planning permission and the applicants lodged appeals with the Planning Inspectorate, which were subsequently upheld.

Penny Channer, chairman of the council’s planning and licensing committee, said: “The council does not like having to spend taxpayers’ money on planning appeals such as these, but we do reserve the right to refuse such applications when there is a compelling reason.

“Sadly, in these cases, the historic character and landscape of the district will now be changed for very many years.”