A blimp has been launched over Northumberland, to show the height and impact of proposed wind turbines on the landscape.
The stunt is being staged by anti-wind-farm campaigners belonging to Soul – Save Our Unspoiled Landscape – and will run throughout the weekend from a field near Barmoor Castle.
They are protesting against nine turbines planned at Barmoor, near Lowick, as well as further schemes at nearby Toft Hill and Moorsyde, which would add 17 more.
To demonstrate the height of the wind turbines, the blimp will be hoisted to 110m – around five times higher that the Angel of the North.
But members of the group hope there won’t be a repeat of events which happened when they flew the six-metre long bright orange dirigible last year.
It broke loose, prompting an air traffic alert and accusations of sabotage by pro-wind activists.
Ann Lamb, whose family own the Barmoor Castle Country Park, near the proposed site, said: “We’ll be baby-sitting the blimp throughout the weekend, to make sure nothing untoward happens to it.
“The aim is to let people see just how prominent these turbines will be, from all directions. We just feel that there are more appropriate places for a wind-farm.”
Local resident Benny Lycett added: “We believe any wind turbines here will have a terrible impact on the landscape and put visitors off coming to the area.”
You can see the blimp flying between 10.30am and 7.30pm.
By Robert Brooks
26 May 2007
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