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Concern over plan for wind turbines

Turbines towering over the picturesque village of Corringham are not a sight many people can imagine.

But it could become reality if plans go ahead for 17 wind powered turbines, as proposed by green energy company SSE Renewables.

This image, produced by campaign group No To Local Wind Farms, shows the scale of the turbines which could be built on land at Browns Holt between Corringham and Yawthorpe, near Gainsborough.

Standing 126m high, they would be the tallest structures in Lincolnshire, towering above Lincoln Cathedral (83m) and even Big Ben clock tower (96m).

“It’s difficult to imagine how these giant turbines would look from surrounding villages, so we have created these digital representations,” said group chairman Peter Baldwin.

“We want people to see how these structures would dominate the local villages and countryside.”

SSE held a series of public consultation events at Corringham Village Hall last summer. But a planning application is not expected until late summer, pending results of environmental studies.

“We are preparing to put our objections forward,” said Mr Baldwin, 66, who lives in nearby Willoughton with his wife Kay, 65.

Browns Holt is just one local site with wind farm potential. RWE Npower Renewables held consultations last month on proposals for ten turbines just north of Hemswell Cliff. And a further 12 are proposed near Huckerby.

“There could be a total of 39 if they are all granted, and maybe more in the pipeline,” said Mr Baldwin.

If built, the wind farms could be seen from as far away as Lincoln, Worksop, Rotherham, Hull and Grimsby.

But when the time comes to object, the No To Local Wind Farms action group will focus on the local impact.

“There are seven grade one listed churches, several protected wildlife species and sites of historical and archaeological importance in the area,” said Mr Baldwin.

“We have West Lindsey’s only 5* bed and breakfast nearby, horse training schools, dog boarding kennels, airfields and flying schools, which would all suffer with turbines on their doorstep.”

Air and road safety are also a worry.

He said: “Tornados and fighter training planes regularly use the area to practice. Will they be able to continue with 126m turbines in the way?”

“The A631 is already deemed a dangerous ‘red road’. These massive things could easily distract drivers.”

A typical turbine produces enough electricity each year to supply of 1,000 homes.

But when the wind is low, turbines produce less electricity. And during high winds they must be switched off.

SSE Renewables says electricity generated from the Browns Holt wind farm would feed straight into the National Grid.

But Mr Barlow is sceptical about the benefits for local people.

“These turbines have the capacity to produce 2MW per year – a total of 34MW for the Browns Holt site,” he said.

“This is just a drop in the ocean. At peak times the National Grid supplies around 600,000MW of electricity.”

“If turbines could replace the need for a power station like West Burton, and we could close that power station, then I would think twice.”

The Government wants make energy more sustainable by increasing renewable energy sources and reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

A spokesman for SSE Renewables said: “These photomontages do not give any indication of exact scale, height and width of blades, and as such it is impossible to discuss their accuracy.”

He added that the company would soon be producing its own images representing the Browns Holt turbines.

West Lindsey District Council were not available to comment before we went to press.

To find out more about the campaign group go to www.notowindfarm.co.uk

And to see SSE’s Browns Holt plans visit www.sse.com/brownsholt