Rochdale’s landscape has changed forever after the first of the Scout Moor windfarm turbines went up this week.
The first of 26 giants, each two thirds the height of Blackpool Tower, has been erected and is just waiting for the blades.
Contractors hope to have another four up and running by Christmas.
Protesters have greeted the move with dismay.
Councillor Ann Metcalfe, who led the campaign to stop the windfarm being built, said: “We can only see one so far, but when all 26 are up it will be rude awakening.
“They are totally overpowering, out of character with the ruggedness of the moorland and will be visible for miles around. It is happening so we have to try and be positive and I hope they will prove to be a benefit to the community, but I very much doubt it.”
Councillor Metcalfe also criticised developers Peel Holdings, owners of the Trafford Centre.
She added: “When you consider the Trafford Centre is lit up like a Christmas tree at all hours of day and night the whole thing smacks of hypocrisy The debate about whether these things are viable is still ongoing and I just hope we don’t live to regret it in the future.”
The windfarm is being funded by Peel Holdings with the work carried out by McNicholas Construction. They say the 99m-high turbines will generate enough energy to power 30,000 homes.
Meanwhile, construction was delayed again on Monday due to bad weather and the late delivery of a container of bolts.
As the Observer reported last week the first delivery of parts was held up due to bad weather over the North Sea.
A spokesman for the contractors said: “There are different sized bolts for different parts of the project. Two containers were supposed to arrive at the same time but one was delayed.
“The weather has also been against us. We cannot work in thick fog and winds over 16mph due to health and safety.
“We’re going to try and catch up on the day lost now that the container has arrived. We have about four weeks of contingency time built into the programme and we have until 24 March to complete the build.”
By Damon Wilkinson
30 November 2007
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