August 2, 2011

Seven wind turbines proposed for north of Winchester

Romsey Advertiser, 2 August 2011

Plans for seven wind turbines north of Winchester have been unveiled to the public.

TCI Renewables wants to build the 100 metre high structures close to Woodmancott, near Micheldever.

The company says it will provide enough electricity for 7,000 homes a year, but residents have expressed concerns that it will be a blot on the rural landscape.

Bruce Hutt, director of TCI Renewables, said: “People are naturally conservative whenever there’s a change in front of them.

“But I think if one were to go and speak to people that live within eye sight of one of these wind farms are they as bad as they thought, the answer is probably not.

A public meeting was held last week to outline the plans and residents have formed the Say No To Candover Wind Farm action group. However, they did not want to comment when approached by the Hampshire Chronicle.

The company says in recompense, the local community would get in the region of £21,000 as an incentive payment.

The privately owned land, between Woodmancott and Dungy Pond, would be leased to the company should the plans be approved.

Mr Hutt said Hampshire must help meet the country’s renewable energy targets and they were responding to the government’s encouragement of such schemes.

He said in this case the area chosen, because of the surrounding hills, would be hidden from many homes, but that residents’ opinions on where the turbines should go would be taken on board.

However, Mr Hutt said he could not guarantee that the plans would not change to increase or decrease the number of wind turbines by a couple either way. Also, he could not rule out looking at further wind turbines on other areas of land in the area if they became available, but that this was not planned.

“If all of us want cheaper electricity and all of us want to reduce our carbon footprint, so it must be encouragement for onshore renewable energy. We need to live with the sight of turbines on the land,” he said He confirmed that a planning application for a test mast has been refused by Basingstoke and Deane Council, but an appeal was lodged several weeks ago and he thought would eventually be approved.

The full proposal, following consultation with bodies such as Natural England and English Heritage, should be submitted to council within the next six months and, if accepted, would see the turbines in place around 2014.

A further consultation is planned for later in the year.

URL to article: