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Recalling origins of wasteful eyesores

The magic of the WMN’s letters columns created a chance meeting I had with Martin Bell, a regular voice from Port Isaac. Martin was told I was conversant with anti-wind farm campaigns and immediately referred to my letter published that day. It shows we keep up with the news.

We were at the funeral of Henry Symons, of Trevathan, a former North Cornwall district councillor with whom I had been friendly for almost 25 years. He was a real gentleman and had become most upset that he seconded the proposal for the first UK commercial wind farm at Delabole in 1989, explaining that never again would he be involved with such plans, as he felt he had been misled by being told “it was only experimental”.

As it was, on the night it was pushed through hastily it was after a long meeting and they all wanted to “get home”, as the proposer later stated to me he personally knew “they would never really work”.

Needless to say it led to the 2,000-plus wind turbines we have in Britain now, which are proving to be nothing but politically green correctness gone mad, with taxpayers being ripped off.

On my way home, the St Breock wind farm came into view several times, and as usual the turbines were struggling. Three were locked up and the rest were on minimum output.

The installed capacity for St Breock (11 turbines X 450kw) is 4.95Mw, with full power only providing the wind is blowing at 30mph, but three were locked up. The capacity (maximum) was immediately reduced to 3.60Mw.

At 10mph wind speed, nothing was being generated, but allowing for variable speed, and a little more given the height of the turbines on a hillside, it was probable that one-tenth of capacity per turbine was giving the passing public the idea that these are “wonderful things”.

Overall they could have been jointly generating 360 kilowatts – roughly one third of a megawatt. That is around 12 kettles boiling for that afternoon cuppa, and certainly would not have supplied tea for about 250 people who attended the funeral gathering.

On checking the Eurostar train timetable, three were about to leave London for Paris, and each of those needs 12Mw to get it there. This is a useful comparison to use while remembering Henry Symons, one of millions who have been and are being misled.

RIP Henry, it was not your fault, as I always told you. I hope they are not a wasteful eyesore where you have gone.

Alan J Nunn

St Austell

Western Morning News

24 June 2008