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'Vast changes' to wind farm needed

Developers behind Britain’s oldest wind farm have told the Cornish Guardian the site needs vast changes to efficiently update renewable energy in North Cornwall.

Built between 1989 and 1991, the 10,400kw turbines at Delabole have become dated and are now in need of upgrading.

Two different plans were outlined at a special meeting at the site held on Friday evening.

Developers and local residents discussed plans for building either nine 850kw turbines or six 2.3mw turbines.

Once the decision on a plan has been made, and if planning consent is granted, work will commence on dismantling the old turbines and replacing them with the new, more efficient machines.

Developers anticipate the new turbines will be operational within the next three years.

Matthew Spencer, from Regen:SW, said: “Cornwall is seen as the leader of renewable energy – due to the success of the Delabole site and the wind farms that followed.

“In a survey before the site was built, people believed that the wind farm would have a negative affect on tourism here – but in a survey after the site was operational, 80% of people said that tourism was unaffected.”

On Saturday, the site hosted its third annual Delabole Wind Fair, where everyone was encouraged to come and find out more about the site and green energy.

Juliet Davenport, chief executive of Good Energy, said: “The Wind Fair is a day to celebrate renewable energy and green living. It was free to attend and everyone met our team of experts to learn more about the repowering project.”

The evening came to a close with a night-time laser display projected onto the moving turbines. But whether campaigners will see them in a new light is a different matter.

Cornish Guardian

22 August 2007