Published: September 29, 2011
Wind farm developer says its Rooksbridge turbines won't hit tourism

The developers behind controversial proposals to build a new wind farm near Burnham-On-Sea have this week criticised claims by campaigners that the wind turbines will impact local tourism.

Nick Woolmington, Chairman of the No Pilrow group, which is fighting plans by Broadview Energy to build six 140 metre turbines on farmland at Pilrow, near Rooksbridge, said: "If the turbines go ahead there will undoubtedly be massive affects on our local tourism. We want to keep the Somerset Levels free of industrial build-up and maintain our natural and green environment."

"I’m sure the many thousands of holidaymakers and families who visit us each year would agree with me. We are not against the idea of renewable energy but it is becoming clear that onshore wind farms are inefficient, costly and environmentally disastrous."

"They place an unacceptable burden on every household through the subsidies to wind farm companies, which all of us have to pay for through our energy bills, including all those businesses engaged in the tourist industry."

However, Tom Cosgrove, project manager at Broadview Energy, told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "There is no evidence to suggest that wind farms negatively affect tourism. The UK's first commercial wind farm at Delabole in Cornwall received 350,000 visitors in its first 10 years of operation."

"Since Delabole was constructed in 1991, numerous other wind farms have been built in Cornwall including Goonhilly wind farm on the Lizard Peninsula right up to Cold Northcott wind farm close to the Devon border."

"There is no evidence to suggest that this has in any way affected the large numbers of tourists that visit the county every summer. Cornwall has, in fact, been voted ‘Favourite UK Holiday County or Region’ at the British Travel Awards for the last two years and has been nominated again for the 2011 award."

Broadview expects to submit a planning application for the Pilrow wind farm in early 2012 and, if approved, the site could be operational in the summer of 2013.

Broadview will be holding a wind farm supporters event on October 13th from 7pm at the Webbington Hotel and Spa, near Axbridge, which will give people the opportunity to learn more about the wind farm proposal, hear from a number of speakers about their experiences, meet other potential supporters and enjoy some entertainment.

Pictured: Top, children standing in front of Broadview’s Hill of Fiddes wind farm in Aberdeenshire and, above, a photomontage from the No Pilrow campaign group showing how the wind turbines at Rooksbridge and Huntspill could look

 


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