THE first two turbines have been delivered for a controversial wind farm site at North Charlton.
Middlemoor Wind Farm - which was the subject of a public enquiry in 2008 - is now under construction, five years after it got the Government go-ahead.
Developer RWE npower renewables says the 18-turbine wind farm, which should be fully operational by the end of the year, will generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of almost 30,000 homes.
The first two turbines have now been delivered to the site, which overlooks the Cheviot Hills just off the A1, with the remaining 16 turbines expected to arrive between now and mid May.
The components for the first two turbines - towers, hubs and blades - made their way from the Port of Blyth along the A1 and onto site, using the new access road off the A1, under police escort.
Martin Kelly, project manager for the Middlemoor wind farm, said: “This is an exciting stage for us and marks the culmination of all the hard work carried out so far.”
The new access road was deemed fit for purpose following a trial run.
Mr Kelly explained: “We carried out a successful test run which proved that the route is suitable for the large vehicles, including the new access junction direct off the A1, and the first two turbines were delivered to site with no problems.”
The Middlemoor wind farm is scheduled to become fully operational by autumn this year.
By then, an £81,000 per annum community investment fund should be open to applications from groups and projects in the area.
RWE npower renewables will shortly be launching a consultation to gather ideas from local people as to how the community benefit fund should be spent.
Once operational, Middlemoor Wind Farm will have a total generating capacity of 54 megawatts, which is enough green electricity to meet the average annual demands of up to 27,600 homes.
The developers say that every unit of electricity from Middlemoor Wind Farm will replace electricity generated from conventional power stations, therefore reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the UK’s dependence on imported fossil fuels.
The original plans for the 18-turbine development at Middlemoor were subject to huge objections from residents.