Information on new initiatives to target fuel poverty and improve local broadband access will form part of two exhibitions taking place later this month of updated plans for a proposed new wind farm in south Cumbria.
Banks Renewables has been carrying out a local public engagement programme over the last six months around the proposed Killington scheme, which would be located on land between the A684 Sedbergh Road and Junction 37 of the M6.The company put on an initial exhibition of its outline plans in Killington in April, and has since been developing more detailed proposals using feedback provided by the people who went along, as well as examining how the community benefits package associated with the wind farm might best be utilised.
The updated plans will now be on display at exhibitions taking place at Killington Parish Hall and New Hutton Institute between 3pm and 7pm on Thursday 20 September.
As well as getting exhibition visitors’ views on the updated scheme design, Banks’ representatives will also be outlining how revenue from the wind farm could support the broadband and fuel poverty initiatives, which have been developed in response to ideas given to Banks by local people.
The final decision on how to allocate the Killington community benefits fund, which will amount to around £675,000 over the 25-year lifespan of the scheme, will be made by local people, but the two schemes have been put forward as examples of how the money might be used to secure a positive, long-term local legacy for the wind farm.
Part of the proposed wind farm site is owned by Killington Educational Foundation and Killington United Charities, and both organisations would also benefit directly from revenues generated by the new wind farm if it is approved.
The Killington wind farm now encompasses three turbines, rather than the five that were originally included, and would produce enough renewable energy to meet the annual electricity consumption requirements of around 8,100 homes.
It would prevent the release of around 14,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere every year that would be generated through the production of the same amount of energy by non-renewable means.
Up to 50 people could be working on site through the construction of the wind farm, and local businesses would also be able to tender for contracts worth around £4m relating to its different aspects of its development, from construction and security through to accommodation and catering.
Phil Dyke, development director at Banks Renewables, says: “We were very encouraged with the levels of support that we received for the Killington scheme at our first exhibition, and hope as many people as possible will come along to see how they have developed since then.
“The work of the two charities that own part of the Killington site would be significantly enhanced by the revenues that would come from the wind farm, and the community benefits package that would run alongside would make a positive difference to the local area for decades to come.
“Issues surrounding local broadband access and fuel poverty were raised by a lot of people at our first exhibition, and we will be unveiling some initial ideas at the forthcoming events about how revenues from the wind farm could be used to tackle them, which we hope will be well received.”
A planning application is expected to be submitted in the autumn. Anyone who would like any further information about the proposed Killington scheme, but who is unable to attend the exhibitions should contact the Banks Renewables’ community engagement team on 0844 209 1515 or 0191 378 6100, or via firstname.lastname@example.org