Residents fighting plans for a giant wind farm on Frodsham and Helsby Marshes claim the ‘very threat’ of the development has already slashed property values in the area.
Peel Energy’s offer of a Community Benefit Fund – believed to be around £1.5m – to support community projects if its controversial scheme is approved, has been rejected by objectors.
“We need to put this into perspective,” said Frodsham town councillor Tony Hinkins, founder member of community protest group, Residents Against the Windfarm (RAW).
“The very threat of this wind farm has already reduced the market value of properties in this community by far more than anything this community benefit fund might provide.
“If this development were to go ahead, Peel would receive about £5m a year in subsidies from electricity bills and we, the public, would effectively pay £135m more for our electricity to receive what would amount to just £60,000 a year in community benefit funding over the wind farm’s 25 year lifespan – about £2 per person for everyone living within 3km of the wind farm.”
Cllr Hinkins said Peel had also failed to take account of potential business losses that would be incurred, particularly in leisure and tourism in the area, if the development went ahead.
RAW members are preparing to lock horns with Peel at a public inquiry to be held this July/August which was triggered by Cheshire West and Chester Council’s objection to the scheme.
A steering group, facilitated by CWaC Council, representing town and parish councils including Frodsham, Helsby, Ince, Elton, Dunham-on-the-Hill and Alvanley, is planning public consultations in May/June in Frodsham, Helsby and Elton to support its negotiations with Peel over the potential Community Benefit Fund.
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding