Bootiful wind turbine plan for Pinchbeck

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TURKEY farm company Bernard Matthews plans to put a 250ft (76.2m) high wind turbine on its site at Pinchbeck and invite county residents to buy shares in a £7.5million community energy project.

The company wants to install a total of six single 500kw turbines at its farms – one at Cowards Lane, Pinchbeck, one at Causeway, near Louth, and four in Norfolk.

Pinchbeck parish councillors were due to have their first sight of the project at their meeting last night and council chairman Andrew Bowser said he would comment after the meeting is held.

The project is called Bernard Matthews Wind Energy Project and, if planning consent is granted, residents of Lincolnshire and Norfolk will have a chance to buy shares ranging from £250 to £20,000 per person.

The company says the co-operative will give people a chance to share in the success of a locally owned and managed project, which will be a first for the eastern region.

The company’s UK managing director, Rob Mears, said: “As a business model this is something that is fairly commonplace in Europe, but much less so in the UK.

“We will be the first company to deliver something like this in the eastern region, so hope there will be plenty of demand to invest in the project.

“The other added bonus, alongside residents owning a stake in the project, is that some of the profits are used to fund new community based initiatives. So taking into account the environmental, community and personal benefits the project really is a win-win for everyone.”

Bernard Matthews has put the project together in partnership with Energy4All, a not-for-profit organisation specialising in developing community based renewable energy schemes.

Mr Mears described the wind turbines as “mid-sized” and said the farm sites were chosen from an original list of nine to limit their impact on the surrounding area.

Friends of the Earth spokesman Andrew Pendleton said the company had “recognised the significant business benefits of tapping into clean British energy”.