Residents of Marshland St James are pulling together as a community to fight a massive wind turbine plan which they feel will swamp their village.
The village’s Jubilee Hall was overflowing on Thursday, when around 350 worried people attended a meeting called by action group Fenland Landscape Against Turbines, or FLAT.
The group, who have pledged to fight the plan, were “gobsmacked” by the response.
As well as signing up in support of FLAT’s campaign to stop the controversial £40 million scheme, around £700 was given by those present to kick-start a fund to cover potential aspects such as legal costs.
FLAT committee member Dave McGuffog was overwhelmed by the support, adding that three farmers who had previously been open-minded about the idea had since rung him to voice disapproval.
“These turbines will be life-changing,” said Mr McGuffog.
Local people feared land around the village had been designated as suitable for wind turbine development, though he thought a referendum should have been held to seek their views.
Among those against the turbines is independent candidate for the local Mershe Lande ward in forthcoming West Norfolk borough council elections, David Markinson.
He told the meeting they would be monstrous, adding “clear evidence” had started to come to light through the Internet and from abroad that house prices might be being affected by wind turbine schemes.
“People are going to be imprisoned in their own homes,” he claimed.
Another speaker, Sue Cooper, said: “Turbines sound like an approaching train that never comes or the level of a lorry travelling at 30mph, 50 yards away”.
She claimed sleep was also disturbed, and knew of one Lincolnshire couple who were renting out another house so at times could stay there instead.
The Marshland St James-based Renewable Energy Consortium is behind the project and says local people could be better off by about £500,000 through a community energy fund over a 25-year period.
24 April 2007
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