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New Pulham windfarm fears

PUBLISHED: 09:47 21 November 2008 | UPDATED: 10:48 12 July 2010

Residents who breathed a sigh of relief two months ago after it emerged that developers had pulled out of a windfarm scheme have been left stunned after another company confirmed it is interested in the site.

RESIDENTS who breathed a sigh of relief two months ago after it emerged that developers had pulled out of a windfarm scheme have been left stunned after another company confirmed it is interested in the site.

Campaigners were jubilant after SLP Energy withdrew its scheme to build seven turbines at the former Pulham Airfield site near Diss.

But now they have been shocked to learn another renewable energy firm, Oxford-based TCI Renewables, is looking at the site with a view to putting forward plans for a smaller windfarm.

TCI Renewables confirmed it had commissioned initial studies to establish the potential for a windfarm at Upper Vaunces Farm, Pulham St Mary, and had instigated a series of detailed environmental assessments which would establish whether the site could be suitable for three turbines.

The company says a project of this size could provide enough green electricity to power 4,000 homes.

TCI Renewables development manager Gavin Clark said: "While detailed environmental studies have yet to be carried out, our initial judgment is that the site meets many of the criteria we look for in a small windfarm."

The company said it was keen to give local people an early opportunity to comment and is distributing nearly 4,000 newsletters to homes in the area this week.

"It is too early to say whether the site could be appropriate, but we are committed to consulting fully with local people before moving ahead with a planning application," he

said.

The announcement has met with anger from the 4Villages group, which was set up by residents in Pulham St Mary, Pulham Market, Dickleburgh and Rushall who opposed the previous proposal.

Lucy Melrose, chairman of the group, said: "We have been trying to meet TCI for weeks. They insisted there was nothing to discuss since there were no firm plans for the site, and under pressure from us said they'd come back to us about a meeting in the next few weeks."

Mr Clark said: "We have been very open with the campaign group and have assured them that we would be happy to meet once we had the necessary legal agreements in place with the land owner to allow us to bring forward development proposals for the site. The agreement was signed only last week."

TCI Renewables will soon launch

a website at www.uppervaunces

windfarm.co.uk.


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