Legal challenge to stop wind turbines at Kessingland

The on-going controversy over two turbines which loom over the north Suffolk countryside took two separate twists yesterday with noise control measures being installed and a possible legal challenge being threatened.

Since they started operating by Kessingland and Gisleham last summer people in both villages, near Lowestoft, have complained about the noise caused by them.

But yesterday the operators of the 125m turbines, Triodos Renewables, said it had voluntarily installed sound management modules on both of the structures.

The modules's software can change the parameters of how the turbines will operate in winds and certain weather conditions by changing the angle of their blades to reduce sound they create,

And as well as the modules being installed yesterday Triodos said after discussions with Waveney District Council it would also be setting up noise recording devices at three homes to see if the modules are needed or work.

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But as Triodos acted on residents's concerns over the noise from the turbines, the Kessingland Wind Turbine Pressure Group (KWTPG) said it was looking into launching a legal challenge into getting the turbines switched off permanently.

KWTPG spokesman Sue Kershaw said: 'We looking at seeking taking legal action to stop them. There are several issues we are looking at – the whole planning process and the noise.

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'Recently the turbines have been at their worse noise wise. It is outrageous it is being allowed to carry on.'

A total of 236 complaints have been made to Waveney District Council about the turbines, which stand either side of the A12 and are claimed by its operators to provide power for up to the equivalent of 3,000 homes.

In August it was revealed that Waveney District Council had said one of them caused a statutory nuisance to one property by environmental health officers.

Adrian Warman, Triodos Renewables operations manager, said once the noise monitor equipment was installed at the three homes they would monitor the turbines for between three to six weeks periods.

Data from the devices will then be regularly shared with a representative of the KWTPG as Triodos Renewables is keen to share its research with people from Kessingland and Gisleham.

Mr Warman said: 'I would like to think that as like all companies involving turbines, we take into consideration of the local community and people's concerns.'

As well as noise problems the turbines, which are also operated by Ecogen, are said to have created shadow flicker on people's properties at certain times of day – a problem the two firms say they have tackled by installing equipment to solve it.

Anyone who wants to report noise at caused by the turbines outside office hours should call Waveney's environmental health team on 01502 515435 To make a report in office hours, ring 01502 562111.

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