REPRESENTATIVES of a developer preparing to build a wind farm on the outskirts of Darlington have pledged to involve local communities at every stage of construction.
Lewis Stokes and Gemma Burnett, of Banks Renewables, attended a meeting of Sadberge Parish Council to update members on the development of the Moor House Wind Farm, which is set to be built at nearby Great Burdon.
Work on the six turbine development has been delayed while Banks works with Durham Tees Valley Airport to resolve outstanding issues regarding the airport’s radar.
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Mr Stokes and Mrs Burnett, who have both recently been appointed to different roles in the project management team for Moor House, said it was hoped that work to build the site would begin shortly, but that no date for the start of construction had been agreed.
Mr Stokes, who will liaise with residents during the operational period of the wind farm, said he was looking to work with local villages to minimise the disruption caused by building work at the site, particularly construction traffic.
He said: “A liaison committee will be set up before building work begins so that there is always dialogue between the community and the developer.
“It means that if there are any concerns, people can get them through to us quickly and we can also pass information back to the villages about big delivery dates, for example.
“We would be looking to have a representative from each village affected on that committee.”
Mr Stokes pledged that traffic movements around the site, particularly heavy goods vehicles, would be kept away from Sadberge and that peak times of day on the roads would be avoided.
The liaison committee would also be asked for its insight into local traffic patterns and events to minimise disruption during the lengthy construction process.
Mrs Burnett, who is project managing the construction process, spoke about the negotiations with the airport over a solution to prevent the turbines blocking its radar.
She said: “We are closer than I think we have been before in speaking to the airport about a possible solution. I can’t give a date [for starting construction], but we are will into discussions about the issue.”