Suffolk wind farm plans revealed

A NEW wind farm with 80 metre high turbines could be created in a Suffolk village, it has emerged.Mid Suffolk District Council has received the approach from Hertfordshire-based firm Tradelink Solutions, which is interested in putting the turbines at Mendlesham airfield, near Stowmarket.

By John Howard

A NEW wind farm with 80 metre high turbines could be created in a Suffolk village, it has emerged.

Mid Suffolk District Council has received the approach from Hertfordshire-based firm Tradelink Solutions, which is interested in putting the turbines at Mendlesham airfield, near Stowmarket.

Suffolk has been identified as potentially having 70 wind turbines within the next seven years and the company believes Mendlesham is a good site for a small wind farm.


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Some residents are worried about the turbines being unsightly, but Andrew Stringer (Green), Mid Suffolk district councillor for Mendlesham, said: "Personally I think if we want wind turbines in this region, this is the best place for them.

"We already have a visual scar with the airfield and the huge tower there. I would prefer one large one rather than eight smaller ones. You can't put all them out at sea and East Anglia could be a good place for renewable energy. We ought to, if this saves having to build Sizewell C.

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"I have had a lot of positive response on the doorstep about this and only three people I spoke to said they did not want it, they did not like the look of them. They are quite tall and there is some research about noise and the hum, but it depends on their size and frequency.

"But the majority of people are forward thinking and want it. They are not permanent things and if they become a problem can be taken down again. This is definitely the way to go.''

Tradelink Solutions, a company formed to serve the developing needs of the deregulated gas and electricity industries, approached the district council earlier in the year to see if it would include the wind farm in its Local Plan.

The Local Plan is the document that forms the planning blueprint in the next decade locally. Stephen Andrews, Local Plan manager, said the wind farm proposal would go out to consultation to parish councillors, and go before district councillors by the end of next month.

Managing director for the firm Bob Middleton said the ideas were at a very early stage and details of what might happen are still fluid. No applications have been submitted at this stage.

He said: "It's a good idea, but it is a question of meeting with all the local people and finding sites where people are happy to have it. We are in the process of testing wind speeds, it might even turn out there is not enough wind there and it may never happen.''

In a statement to the council the company said earlier in the year: "The development helps the area towards its renewable energy targets and cuts carbon dioxide emissions from both county and country.

"The wind farm will utilise local contractors during construction and operation and the land beneath the turbines will continue to be farmed, thus the wind farm is helping to maintain and safeguard local agriculture.''

The company had estimated that the wind farm would be able to provide electricity to the local area for about 35%, of the year when the wind conditions are suitable.

A spokeswoman for the council said that the company would need to test that there is sufficient wind for about a year before any application submitted could move on.

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