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Biggest wind farm is to expand by 50 per cent

More wind turbines are on the way after councillors gave two developments the go ahead.

The county’s largest wind farm at Burton Wold, near Burton Latimer, is set to expand by 50 per cent to 15 turbines by the end of 2014 and a turbine taller than Big Ben’s clock face could be in place in Cranford within a year after Kettering Council’s planning committee declared the town “open for green business”.

Esbjorn Wilmar, managing director of Infinergy, which operates 10-turbine Burton Wold, said: “We want to go very fast and if everything is going well I would say you will see them spinning by the end of 2014.”

Only four neighbours objected to the plan for five turbines at Glendon Farm to the north of Finedon and 21 sent letters of support. Frank Holley, 69, who can see Burton Wold from his garden half a mile away in Tingdene Road, Finedon, said: “I sit and look at the blades. It’s very relaxing. I don’t see any problem with it.”

But neighbours were disappointed a 100ft turbine will be built on Cranford Estate, which councillors approved despite objections from 81 neighbours, East Northamptonshire Council, the parish councils of Lowick and Slipton, Sudbrough and Twywell, the Wildlife Trust and the Campaign to Protect Rural England.

Stephen Waine, who lives near the site in Slipton Lane, said: “At the moment there are just fields and it just seems to be a failure to reflect the collective damage to the countryside.”

Alex Robinson, 38, who is managing the project for his family’s farm, said: “It’s obviously disappointing we have upset some people. For our business it’s not an altruistic goal, but it will keep the costs down and reduce our carbon footprint.”

He estimated it could reduce the arable farm’s carbon footprint by as much as 75 per cent.

Cllr Terry Freer said: “Most of the people who live near Burton Latimer seem to consider the turbines good neighbours.”

Cllr Michael Brown said: “Kettering is open for business and the more green business we get, the better.”

Both decisions were unanimous.