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Storm brews over turbine  

WIND turbine plans for Codnor Industrial Estate, have been met with a gusty reception from nearby residents.

The proposals are to install a turbine, which would stand 79 metres tall, at the Bonar Floors plant which manufactures ‘Flotex’ floor covering.

The company, which employs around 200 people, estimate that it could provide a third of the energy used at the factory and cut bills dramatically.

Bonar Floors held a public meeting last Thursday at Ripley Town Hall and an exhibition at the factory, to allow members of the public to see and discuss the plans.

Up to 1,000 letters were distributed to nearby residents, inviting them to attend.

Glenn Fletcher and his wife Debbie live next to the factory on Nottingham Road, and were among those who came to see the plans.

Mr Fletcher said: “We came here with no pre-conceptions and we’re not against wind
turbines in principle but I feel profits are being put ahead of the local people’s concerns.

“This would totally dominate the landscape, I don’t think some people are aware just how big this is going to be. The factories already make a noise and any increase in that would be a concern.

“I just hope the council isn’t blinded by the green issue.”

Other people raised concerns about noise levels, light flicker through the blades and the visual impact of the structure.

Simon Cowdroy, an environment consultant for the company told the meeting: “We want to reduce our energy costs and our greenhouse gas emissions while making a long term investment in the Ripley site. We want to generate our own energy and a wind turbine is the most developed and cost effective method.”

The company is yet to apply for planning permission but hope to move a second hand turbine to the site at the end of next year. It takes three months to set a
turbine up once delivered and the company would like to start it for the first time in early 2008.

A spokesman for Bonar Floors said: “Around 40 residents visited the exhibition and
everyone was asked to fill in the visitor’s book. From this book we can see that 80 per cent of those who visited the exhibition are in favour of the turbine.”

Clive Whittingham

clive.whittingham@rhnews.co.uk

ripleytoday.co.uk

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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