- National Wind Watch: Wind Energy News - https://www.wind-watch.org/news -

An ill wind blowing the way of my beloved town

Quite appropriate really after all the National Grid could probably keep the turbine blades blowing for quite some time purely using the nervous flatulence their decision to route the windfarms via Cefn Coch has caused local people to suffer.

We’ve all been waiting with baited breath to hear which route power bosses would choose to link England’s national power network to the dratted windfarms about to blight our beautiful landscape sometime soon.

For me personally, the decision to route the power lines through the Llansantfraid, Meifod valley, culminating in Cefn Coch near Llanfair Caereinion (my nearest town), is just about as bad as it can be.

Not only is the Meifod Valley one of my favourite places in the world – and if you haven’t been there yet, go now, before it is utterly ruined by the pylons – but also I just weep for what this will mean for Llanfair Caereinion, officially the smallest town in Wales.

Llanfair has already suffered much at the hands of progress. When I first moved to the area, I got chatting to an old soak just tumbling out of the many pubs in the town. Sadly, the pubs seem to be the only businesses still able to scratch a living here which doesn’t say much for the morale of local people.

My slightly sozzled new friend told me what the town used to be like, a bustling, busy centre for the many farms, homes and villages strung out across the lonely hills, jam-packed with shops, cafes and the like. It even had electricity long before most of England and way before the National Grid even knew it existed, produced by harnessing the power of the river and run by a small group of forward thinking locals.

But today, Llanfair is a very different place from that once-promising local hub. It still has a strong and committed community, determined to drag it clear of the stamping boot of progress, and it’s still beautiful in a crookedy, storey-book way.

But the shops have nearly all shut, silenced forever by the march of the superstores and the crookedy old streets are clogged up with the cars we’re busy using to take our custom elsewhere.

And now our town is to become a sideshow to the Cefn Coch electricity hub, what will that mean for it’s future? How long will the streets remain storey-book and crookedy when they have pantechnicans hauling heavy equipment up to Cefn Coch day and night?

How many tourists will pay good money to come up to the hills to watch turbines chasing all the wildlife away? I just hope those responsible remember well that grants will soon run out but our landscape will be ruined forever.