A WIND farm with turbines up to 125metres high is being planned for an Essex village, it has emerged.
The development – which would be the first major wind farm in the north of the county – would provide enough power for between 5,500 and 6,000 homes.
Power firm Npower Renewables wants to build the plant at a site at Earls Hall Farm, in Earls Hall Drive, St Osyth.
Two days of consultation will now be held in the village to find out local residents’ views on the plans, which include turbines of between 110m and 125m in height.
The scheme has been welcomed by Paula Whitney, local spokeswoman for Friends of the Earth, who said: “Essex is particularly susceptible to flooding and other severe weather effects because of climate change.
“A report from Oxford University blows away the myth that wind is intermittent; it shows Britain has wind power which is available all year round and when electricity is needed most.
“The eastern region has set a target of 10% renewable energy within four years and these five wind turbines would provide enough electricity to meet the average needs of the whole of St Osyth and Brightlingsea.”
Michael Talbot, a St Osyth parish and Tendring district councillor, said he was aware of the scheme and a test rig had been put at the farm about 18 months ago to assess its suitability.
He said: “I don’t personally have any objection but I don’t know what will come around as a result of these discussions.
“It is not going to be obtrusive in terms of the scenery – you are not going to see it driving along the road.”
Michael Pullan, spokesman for Npower, which has not yet applied for planning permission, said: “We have an agreement with the land owner to lease the land at which the turbines would stand.
“We don’t take over the whole farm. Essentially, once construction was completed the farmer literally farms at the base of the turbines.
“It does not affect the way they earn their living, it is primarily an extra source of income.”
Mr Pullan said the consultation aimed to hear the villagers’ views and also to answer any questions.
“We have been doing this for 15 years so we have got a good idea of what people would like to see and what helps people in terms of judging the possible impact of the wind farm,” he said.
“There are going to be computer-generated pictures and photo montages showing an image of the existing landscape and some wind turbines put to the correct size and scale.”
Npower has 16 land wind farms and one off-shore wind farms in the UK.
The public consultation will be held in St Osyth Village Hall, Clacton Road, St Osyth, on September 22 from 2-7pm and September 23 from 11am-4pm.
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