An exhibition of the proposed wind farm to the south of Whitchurch opened today (Wednesday) in the Parish Hall. The renewable energy farm, which will comprise of 17 turbines, is planned to be just two miles south of the town.

Watching the 3D simulations.

Representatives from EDF Energy Renewables were on hand to discuss the proposals and to collect local opinion, before a planning application is submitted for the land situated north east of the junction of the A34 and the A303, known as Bullington Cross. The application will be determined by Basingstoke & Deane, Test Valley and Winchester Councils as it crosses all their boundaries.

Included in the exhibition are details of the proposed turbine layouts, photomontages and 3D visual simulations to help residents understand what the wind farm will look like from various locations.

There was a steady stream of visitors asking questions.

One concern has been how the power will feed into the National Grid and the website was told this may be through a number of locations, yet to be determined. This is likely to be to one of three points – near Andover, just north of Whitchurch or near Barton Stacey, with underground connection to the latter being the likely preferred option.


Ian Watson from EDF said he was “delighted with the turnout and the interest shown” before explaining that this was only the start of the consultation process, prior to any application.

Visitors were encouraged to leave their written comments on the proposals.

The Exhibition continues today (Thursday) and is open at the Parish Hall from 12noon to 7.00pm.

Further Information
More details on the proposed scheme are also available at: http://www.bullingtoncrosswindfarm.co.uk.

Comments (5)

  • climo

    I’m a wholehearted supporter of wind power and for me it was a very interesting show but it raised some questions.

    The sound level the windfarm produces will be around 35db at the distance of Whitchurch but that’s in average conditions and only when the turbine is working. This is claimed to be less than the background noise but I wonder if Micheldever Road really has a background noise of 35db.
    Noise is cumulative and that extra turbine noise will increase the overall noise level. Assuming a background noise level of 35db plus 35db from the windfarm that adds up to 37db which is a 66% increase in sound level. This is not very much believe it or not but the type of noise from the turbines is a swooshing noise so is unlikely to blend in with the general background noise. In the worst case it may be perceived as up to 10db which is much louder than the 2db that it’s measured at. It may be quite noticeable especially at night and in winter.
    It’s a bit like the noise from the A34 on a wet winters day with a west wind. The noise is quite a bit louder but I wonder if it is measurably that much more in decibels.
    This noise info is all gleaned from the internet and I’m absolutely no expert so would welcome input from someone who does know what they are on about.

    The 3D views were interesting as the turbines mainly blended into the sky until you viewed them in side light (early AM and later PM) when they showed up clearly so that’s likely to be about 4 hours a day.

    The closest turbine is 1900mt from Micheldever Road. In the 3D presentation I don’t quite understand how a 126mt high structure at around 2km distance can be portrayed as small in the picture as it was unless it’s using a ‘wide angle lens’ view. The software appeared to be using an average field of view of about 90 degrees and much more than that on the view from about 60mts above Micheldever Road when the whole windfarm was seen.
    I’d like to see the eye level view portrayed at around a 50 degree field of view as that angle of view is what most impacts our perception of a scene. Add to that the movement which will attract the eye.

    The estimated wind speed at the 80mt turbine height is 6-7 metres per second which unsurprisingly is the absolute optimum for a windfarm. This has yet to be established by erecting a test mast but it seems a convenient figure to quote at the planners & public.
    The lower threshold of a turbine is 5 mts/sec, below that it stops. At 8 mts/sec some 75% more power is produced compared to that at 6-7 mts/sec

    People should know that the 17, 2 to 3MW turbines will in theory be able to produce 34 to 51MW of power but the accepted efficiency is 24% so more likely 8-12MW. This 24% is accepted as the average generated in windy Scotland. There are no comparable onshore windfarms in the southern counties but I’d be surprised if the efficiency here was as high as 24%

    I would imagine that another windfarm could be built next to the proposed development thus doubling capacity and maximising EDF’s investment.

    EDF could provide a more realistic 3D view and maybe organise a trip to an operating windfarm to allay any fears residents have.

    I’d welcome any correction to the above.

    In summary as I see the windfarm is definitely worth building both in overall siting and benefit to the environment / energy security.
    My feeling is that the closest turbine to the town should be 2.5 or 3km away to reduce noise and visual intrusion.

    Actually I think that they look very good in the landscape. A viewing platform at turbine height would be a superb attraction. More so than the Silk Mill has become.

  • Kate Muff

    There are 3 wind turbines along the Stockbridge to Winchester road near Crawley and they are very relaxing to watch: No-one likes the pylons across the countryside, but none of us say no to the electricity do we? Maybe this is a start in the right direction to a cleaner planet for our children to inherit from us and to try to put right some of our wrongs,

  • George Garton

    I reply to climo, you are nearer the mark on your assement on turbines, 24% is at the top for the best sites, mainly in Scotland. Wind speeds in the south, including results nearby at East Stratton, fail to reach viable commercial figures. In addition, a further 10 to 15% of that 24% will be lost due to build up of flies/dirt on the blades themselves.

    Without any further solar or wind generation, we can still achieve our C02 targets for 2020 at a saving to the consumer of £34billion. These types of generations are unreliable and cannot produce any base loading and requiring existing power stations to remain on spinning for when the wind does not blow or sun shine. Therefore they will not reduce our carbon levels but increase them.
    For 1/10th of the cost of this windfarm you could produce the same amount of power from the river test,reduce its cost to the consumer and industry, making the country competitive again, creating jobs and taking some of the current 25% of domestic users out of fuel poverty.
    Thats the kind of clean planet I want to leave our children.

    I live part of the year in Germany and in 7 years my electric bill increases amount to a 1.5% standing charge with a 3 cents per unit, my hot water and heating is supplied by a central wood chip burner, a saving to me of 13 Euro’s per month over gas and, which supplies most of the town the size of Whitchurch. Germany is now changing its policy on wind generation and the building of windfarms will come to an end.

    For the true story on windfarms please contact me on 01256896364

  • climo

    ISTR the 24% is an average. Lots of turbines produce a lot more.
    Could you post the East Stratton figures here please.
    I’m intrigued by the flies / dirt story. It sounds highly unlikely. Please post links to the research.

    Apart from energy efficiency savings and lifestyle changes how can we ‘achieve our C02 targets for 2020 at a saving to the consumer of £34billion’.
    I would dispute that wind power is unreliable. Sure, we’ll still have lots of fossil fuel power stations, some will be idle – just like they are now when little power is used at night. The principle is the same.
    By 2022 the first of the new nukes will come online. Many more will follow.
    It’s not an either / or with windfarms. They are part of a lower carbon power generation system that we have to build. At most they’ll comprise 30% and more likely 20%. The vast bulk of our power will be from new nukes with gas as well.

    I can’t see the Test producing much power. Please explain this.
    Fuel poverty has always been with us. It’s best addressed through the tax system

    Biomass isn’t carbon neutral. In fact on a large scale it’s bad news. Read
    EU carbon target threatened by biomass ‘insanity’ Renewable energy targets are driving tree-cutting for biomass energy http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/apr/02/eu-renewable-energy-target-biomass

    Germany is also closing it’s nuclear power stations due to the utter hysteria caused by Fukushima and making good the shortfall by importing power from former eastern block countries coal fired power stations thus making a mockery of their energy policy.
    Germany has reduced the subsidy on windfarms but I believe that they are concentrating on building huge offshore windfarms. Meanwhile other nations have committed to increasing their wind turbine installations eg Denmark.

  • climo

    Looked up the flies / dirt issue and you’re correct – it happen but not all the time. Best guess is that the blades are cleaned when stopped for maintenance.

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