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Windfarm hopes to move forward

The company behind plans to build a wind farm off the north Norfolk coast says it hopes to have all the permissions it needs in place by the end of the year.

But Scira Offshore Energy’s plan to put around 88 turbines at Shreingham Shoal is still meeting opposition from locals.

The company is currently waiting for permission from the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, formerly the Department for Trade and Industry, to site the turbines, which will be in a diamond shape just over 10 miles offshore.

It has also lodged planning applications with North Norfolk District Council for the onshore grid connection route and with Broadland District Council for a substation at Salle.

Sue Vincent, communications manager for Scira, said: “Since May 2006 we have been working with the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform to alleviate any issues. We have done everything we can and we are now waiting for permission.

“We have also submitted applications to North Norfolk District Council and Broadland District Council.

“We hope to have all approvals by the end of the year. We will then start looking at the detailed design and we hope onshore construction can being in 2009 with offshore construction starting in 2010 or 2011.”

But the onshore grid connection plan is meeting with objections.

At a recent meeting of Plumstead Parish Council councillors said that they were pleased to see that at cross-country route for the onshore cable had been adopted but objected to the actual route, which goes through Plumstead.

They said they want to see an all cross country route that avoids all residential areas, takes into account areas of outstanding natural beauty and other environmental considerations.

By Dominic Chessum

Eastern Daily Press

21 October 2007