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Residents in plea to halt wind farm access road plans near Cliviger

Villagers are asking why helicopters cannot be used to transport huge wind turbine components to a wind farm development.

Residents of Overtown, near Cliviger, are anxiously awaiting the outcome of a planning application for a new access road, required by Scottish Power Renewables to ‘repower’ Coal Clough Wind Farm.

Residents fear the impact of massive transporters rumbling through the village if a track is allowed off Red Lees Road by the borough council’s planning committee.

Proposals have been in the pipeline for three years to replace the existing 24 turbines, each measuring 49 metres high, with eight alternative models, of 110-metres.

Margaret Jenkins, who lives in nearby West View, said: “We just don’t know why they don’t use helicopters to transport the turbines to the wind farm.

“Some of these houses on Red Lees Road are so old they don’t have proper foundations and all they tell us is to speak with our insurers.

“This is the home I retired to and this is what I will have now for the rest of my time here – disruption. We are really concerned about the vibrations.”

Similar fears were expressed by people living in the Rossendale valley when giant turbines were taken along local roads to construct Scout Moor wind farm near Edenfield.

Villagers have also put up large banners, at the entrance to Overtown, to voice their disgust at the road project, and 150 people packed out a meeting at Cliviger Village Hall, attended by the firm’s representatives.

Coun David Heginbotham, a former borough mayor who represents Cliviger, is adamant a more viable alternative exists to the Long Causeway wind farm along Foxstones Lane.

He added: “The lorries will be coming through the village with only inches to spare when there is a perfectly good option that Scottish Power seem to have dismissed.

The power firm’s agents say ‘tight bends’ in nearby Mereclough had resulted in the alternative route being sidelined.

Borough planners are expected to make a ruling on the access road proposals before the end of the year.