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Operators refuse to shut down Kessingland turbines disturbing villagers

PUBLISHED: 21:03 01 June 2012 | UPDATED: 09:48 02 June 2012

Kessingland wind turbines near Lowestoft.

Kessingland wind turbines near Lowestoft.

Archant 2012

Villagers disturbed by wind turbines in Kessingland have been told they cannot be shut down while operators try to fix problems with noise and vibration.

Operators EcoGen and Triodos apologised for the disruption at a public meeting today, but refused to stop the turbines amid claims it would lose them money.

More 60 people vented their anger at St Edmunds Hall, Kessingland, which featured the Kessingland Wind Turbine Pressure Group (KWTPG) and a panel including Waveney MP Peter Aldous, representatives from Waveney District Council and operators of the two turbines.

They heard how flickering shadows and noise from the turning blades had stopped some people sleeping and troubled them in their homes. It was also claimed the turbines had caused property prices to fall in the area.

A report by the Waveney District Council’s environmental health officers in May revealed the noise caused by the turbines was not breaching regulations set out by the government or the planning process.

But it was discovered that more complaints were made about noise when the blades were turning at eight metres per second.

Operators of the turbines, at Africa Alive wildlife park and near the A12, have vowed to try and reduce sound at this speed, and are hopeful new equipment installed in the turbines will help stop ‘shadow flicker’.

Meanwhile, villagers in Kessingland and Gisleham have been urged to call an out of hours number for the district council’s environmental health team to report the turbine sound at night.

Speaking at the meeting, Matthew Clayton, director of Triodos, said: “I take the complaints very personally and I want to resolve the issue.

“We offer our sincerest apologies but we cannot switch the turbines off.

“Now we have to get more information about the eight metres per second speed so we can adjust it and help mitigate that.

“Since receiving the district council’s environmental health report on May 18 we have been looking at options to deal with the issue. We have done everything voluntarily. We were surprised there has been a problem with the turbines because we have never had them before.”

After the first public meeting in January, villagers have formed the KWTPG campaign group in a bid to shut down the turbines and have them removed.

Tony Gower, a member of the KWTPG, said: “They operated the turbines without the component fitted to stop shadow flicker and its caused people considerable distress. What are they going to do for these people?”

For more information about KWTPG visit www.turnthemoff.co.uk. To report noise caused by the turbines during the night, call the district council’s environmental health team on 01502 515435 between 7pm and 1am on any Friday and Saturday. To make a report during office hours call 01502 562111.

12 comments

  • Vinny p. The real problem you have is that you simply don't understand the problem. ONshore wind simply doesn't work and dotting the odd one or two around the countryside has no effect on the hypothetical "energy shortage" problem. I am also totally against paying the huge subsidies that are the only reason these things are built. If you want to make money, from your neighbours and the rest of the UK energy bill paying population, then build one, as soon as you can!!! You cannot fail, ONLY the subsidies make them possible, otherwise you wouldn't touch them with somone else's barge pole.

    Report this comment

    windup

    Sunday, June 3, 2012

  • Ian - you are so right. Why the two turbines couldn't have been put a couple of miles off-shore, I don't know. I do believe that the landowners are getting a good revenue from having them on their land!! The new group need to do a little delving to see where Waveney and, especially the Parish Council stood when planning permission was approved. As I said, I wish the new group the best of luck and I hope they perservere.

    Report this comment

    Kristiangarrett

    Tuesday, June 5, 2012

  • Having read the report and having been part of the initial group that wanted to address both the noise and the shadow flicker, it is reassuring to know that there IS really a problem. I count myself lucky as I sold my property as we could not cope with the noise. Good luck to the new group.

    Report this comment

    Kristiangarrett

    Tuesday, June 5, 2012

  • Vinny p You are, of course completely wrong as one would expect. Offshore there are so many in one group or field that the connection cost is shared. Also, where is the nearest grid connection point to your house? I suspect I'd rather have a nuclear power plant, which BTW DOES generate electricity next to my house.... . You may well be deaf, most of us aren't, just like the folks in Kessingland. Perhaps you should go and camp there for a wee while, then sympathise with the locals rather than being, frankly, nasty to them as you currently are.

    Report this comment

    Windless

    Saturday, June 2, 2012

  • Kristian, You were VERY lucky, your ex neighbours in Kessingland are not. The real problem we have here is that the actual knowledge of "Joe Public" is so low and so already biased by media brainwashing, and those who will benefit from the subsidies, that most, think that having one of these is actually good for our environment, NOTHING could be further from the truth. In fact the further OFFSHORE it is, the better. Let's hope we can get a good campaign going to remove the Kessingland ones for ever.

    Report this comment

    Windless

    Tuesday, June 5, 2012

  • VinnyP. If it is just locals moaning how come there are so many negative comments from people who have stayed at the site posted on the Kessingland page of the Camping & Caravan Club website?

    Report this comment

    NLys

    Saturday, June 2, 2012

  • vinny.p - Where would you like the nuclear, coal or gas power station to be then? These turbines are very inefficient so you will always need power stations to make good the difference, no matter how many of these turbines you have. They are just one very big expensive con trick for which we are all paying over the odds for on our energy bills. If there was not so much money to be made out of these things these companies would not touch them with a barge pole. They would all be making a loss if the government did not subsidise them at 3 or 4 times what we are actually paying our energy companies for each unit of electricity.

    Report this comment

    Hereandthere

    Sunday, June 3, 2012

  • How I so sympathise with the predicament these poor people are in. The noise issue is so difficult to quantify and, really, it is only after they are erected that it can be experienced, by then, far too late. Another aspect is that the operators "cannot shut them down". Well, yes they can but the subsidy they are being paid on the electricity they generate is so high, and the turbines are so expensive that they must keep them turning to meet the loan repayment costs, irrespective that many people's lives are being adveresely affected, day and night. If there was ever a case for fighting the planning applications for any of these things, this is it. Of course, if they were where they should be....offshore, no-one would hear them and they might even generate meaningful amounts of electricity!

    Report this comment

    Windless

    Saturday, June 2, 2012

  • With the greatest respect to the residents of Kessingland, you have allowed a power station that is a wolf in sheeps clothing to built in your backyard. What did you expect? No power station makes a good neighbour, get over it!

    Report this comment

    Dengie Boy

    Saturday, June 2, 2012

  • Good-good-another 100 to adourn the Kessingland Skyline by 2020-well in. The rewards are Bountiful-people don't like it because their getting nothing out of it-get back to the smoke-plenty to complain about there when the shops get looted and homes burned down.

    Report this comment

    Colin James Watling

    Thursday, June 7, 2012

  • BG. If turbines do not work and are a massive waste of money could you please explain why especially in Scotland so many community wind projects have sprung up with no government help. I'll tell you why, because of the massive profits made by the farmers etc who pay for these turbines. If they were such a waste of money they wouldn't be built and that's a fact.

    Report this comment

    glassngrind

    Monday, June 4, 2012

  • When these ate offshore they cost a lot more to connect to the national grid. I really don't see a problem in these its just locals ganging up and moaning. I have been on campsites for weeks with turbines right on the next field and never lost a wink of sleep. I would rather have them near my house instead of a nuclear power plant.

    Report this comment

    vinny.p

    Saturday, June 2, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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