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30m turbine faces costly repairs after gearbox ‘fails’

The Abergwaun community wind turbine has broken down and faces costly repairs after its gearbox apparently packed up, the County Echo has learnt.

The 30m-high turbine at Trebover Farm, Llanychaer – a joint collaboration between a local farmer and Transition Bro Gwaun renewables group – remains out of action after the company that manufactured it went into administration while the firm behind the gearbox went bust.

TBG’s 50 per cent share of the £570,000 funding required for the turbine was raised by loans from local individuals and three community groups.

Although unofficial estimates place the potential repair bill as high as £70,000, TBG – who set up the project with support from the Welsh Government and in partnership with Parc-y-Morfa Farms Ltd – are putting a brave face on the unexpected setback.

“We know of other turbines which have had gearbox issues and there seems to be some sort of manufacturing problem,” TBG trustee Tom Latter told the County Echo.

“We therefore hope that our insurance will cover the repairs as well as the loss of income while it is out of action.

“At present we simply have no idea just how much the cost of replacing the gearbox will be – we will have a better idea when the top of the turbine is removed, possibly sometime this week.”

Read the full story in this week’s County Echo, on sale now