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One man's bid to halt Robin Rigg wind farm  

A one-man crusade is being waged against plans for an offshore windfarm near Maryport.

Andy Long, 41, has a commanding view of the Solway Firth from his Kirby Street home but says this will be spoiled by building 60 turbines 426 feet above sea level at Robin Rigg.

Mr Long, an interpreter for the deaf, has sent more than 50 home-made DVDs on the issue to politicians, royalty, conservation groups, heritage groups and businesses.

He made the DVD showing Maryport as it is now and outlining his fears for industries such as tourism if the wind turbines are built.

Final preparation work on the offshore windfarm, about seven miles from the coast of Maryport, is now underway with the arrival of the MV Resolution, the world’s first vessel for installing offshore turbines.

Mr Long said: “This project is going to cost £200 million and the Government has already said it is going to offer tax incentives for renewable energy schemes.

“But we are living in one of the poorest areas of the country. We are told we are amongst the poorest in Europe.

“I think the priority is to make things better for the people living here now.”

Mr Long has been told that the windfarm was approved by the Scottish Executive and that nothing can be done to halt it.

But he said he was upset that not a single MP had responded to his letter and DVD.

He added: “Powergen, who were originally building the wind farm, promised there would be economic benefits and jobs for the region.

“But none of the 70 crew on the Resolution are local and there is no sign of any money or jobs.”

It was also intended that EON UK, who took over the project from Powergen, would put £1 million towards a visitor centre and viewing platform.

This would no longer happen, however, because the company could not decide on the best location for a centre.

Allerdale council and Dumfries and Galloway council will get £500,000 each when the windfarm is finished to spend how they want to.


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