November 17, 2007

First turbine looms over future farm

The first turbine on Lincolnshire’s biggest wind farm has gone up.

There will be 20 turbines erected at Fen Farm, Conisholme, near Louth, each 89 metres high.

After years of debate over the controversial wind farm and approval granted two years ago, construction has begun.

It dominates the Louth Marsh landscape and the view from the Wolds.

All 20 turbines are expected to be in place and operating early in the New Year.

Dale Vince, managing director of developer Ecotricity, said: “It’s been over five years in the making, with much of that time wasted in a planning system that just can’t cope.

“But here we are, Fen Farm will be a beautiful wind park in just a few more weeks, generating enough clean electricity to power more than 13,000 local homes each year – and that’s perhaps the best part.

“Local people can use the electricity we’re going to harvest from the wind to run their homes and businesses.”

A spokeswoman for the firm said workers had completed the first wind turbine and will erect two each week over the next 10 weeks, with a short break over Christmas and New Year.

The firm is using a 500 tonne crane which has a capacity to lift 70 double decker buses at once.

The turbine arrives in three sections, which are fitted together one on top of the other. The hub is then lifted into place on top of the completed tower.

The blades are fitted into the nacelle (the gear box, drive train and generator) on the ground and lifted in one piece.

The farm was only approved in 2005 after a dramatic turnaround.

There were 137 letters of protest to the proposal and ELDC’s Planning Committee initially refused the application.

The controversial site was deemed hazardous to aircraft radar and military jets using RAF Donna Nook bombing range.

Councillors also agreed that the visual impact on the Louth Marsh detracted from the spire of St James’ Church, Louth.

But, the dramatic u-turn came after councillors agreed the impact of climate change on the world and rising sea levels needed greater renewable energy sources.

Grimsby Telegraph

17 November 2007

URL to article: