£500k wind turbine almost ready to start turning
THE switch will soon be flicked on a new wind turbine which has received £500,000 of investment from the community.
The green electricity generator has been moved into position in the Forest of Dean and is ready to start turning.
It is the first "democratically financed" turbine, funded by £500,000 from investors across the UK and is the brainchild of the Resilience Centre in Woolaston, who are working with farmer Anthony Cooke, from Wye Valley Bacon and Sausage.
Investment company Abundance Generation has received monies ranging from £5 to £50,000, aged between 19 to 81, for the turbines placed at Great Dunkilns a mile outside of St Briavels.
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Bruce Davis, co-founder of Abundance Generation, said: "We have received investment from a wide range of investors from up and down the country, as well as near to the projects themselves which is very encouraging.
"People who have been following us for a while have committed their money and can now see the benefits of investing in renewable energy.
"As people can invest as little as £5 through Abundance, we are unlocking the benefits of investing in renewable energy to a radically wider audience, which is why we call it democratic finance.
"Since the turbines went up we have seen another wave of investors come forward, which is great news."
The main bulk of the turbine is in place while wiring and tests are currently underway.
Abundance Generation is anticipating the turbine will start working and providing homes within the next few weeks.
The scheme is still open to investors, which provides a regular cash return based on the profits from the energy generated.
The 500kw, 74-metre high turbine at Great Dunkilns Farm, which was granted planning permission last year, will provide green electricity to between 50 and 180 homes.
It produces an average rate of return per annum of up to 8 per cent on capital invested.
The programme is the result of three years research and development, where communities said they wanted greater control over where their money goes and is invested.
Entrepreneurs Andrew and Sue Clarke, from The Resilience Centre, are backing it to such an extent they have invested their entire pension contributions.
The turbine was previously given the go-ahead to be 67 metres high, but plans were resubmitted so the structure could stretch 74 metres into the air.
For more information, log on to www.abundancegeneration.com.