Wind turbine firm gets views from residents

Christine Cameron is shown wind farm plans for land near St Michael's by Sophie Palmer (left) and Josie Salmon of 3DW Technologies.
Christine Cameron is shown wind farm plans for land near St Michael's by Sophie Palmer (left) and Josie Salmon of 3DW Technologies.

Parish councillors have called for people to share their views on wind turbines in St Michael’s-on-Wyre.

Christine Cameron, vice-chairman of St Michael’s Parish Council, said it was vital all the facts about the proposal were known.

At the developer day, she said: “I am here to find out all the facts because this is a big issue for everyone in the village and it is important we are as well informed as possible.

“The parish council has not made its mind up yet, and it is vital as many people as possible take part in the consultation.”

Alice Byrne, of developer RWE Npower renewables, the developer for the proposed Cuckoo Wood Wind Farm, said: ’We were very pleased with the response from the local community to this first event about our proposed wind farm.

“The day gave us an opportunity to meet more than 100 local people and to hear some of their initial views and suggestions and we welcome that input.

“We are still at an early stage in the development process, therefore there is still an opportunity for us to consider views and suggestions during the design of the wind farm as far as is possible.

“We were also interested to hear some of the suggestions for how the community benefit fund could be spent if the wind farm is consented.

“We look forward to building on the contacts that we made on Saturday and to continuing to build a positive and open relationship with the local community.”

A second public exhibition is expected to be held in February 2014.

The anemometer mast, which went up at the site just over a week ago, will monitor wind speeds, direction and turbulence for the next three years to assess if the planned Cuckoo Wood Farm will be viable for electricity production.

To date, RWE has not submitted any plans to Wyre Council for the wind farm.

Alice Byrne added: “The mast will provide us with valuable wind data which, together with our environmental studies, will help determine the site’s suitability for a wind farm. Should the results of our studies continue to be positive, the data will also help inform the design of the proposed scheme.

County Coun Sandra Perkins, Garstang’s Independent councillor said: “I’m not a fan of wind farms and I’ve yet to be convinced that they do what they say on the tin.”

She added she though planners across the country seemed to pay little regard to the strength of local feeling.

Citing the opposition to local developmnents at Eagland Hill and Dewlay, which got the go-ahead despite local protests, she noted:”I’ve questioned people and asked what they think about it.... People are very fed up and think protesting does them no good. You can make representations on behalf of the electorate but I think it’s been decided at some higher level that wind farms are the way forward.”