Moor House six turbines
North East England's newest onshore wind farm is generating clean green electricity after the completion of testing and commissioning work.
Banks Renewables has taken official possession of the £17.5m Moor House wind farm near Darlington from main contractor Hall Construction Services Ltd after the scheme's six turbines were fully energised.
The £750,000 community benefits fund linked to Moor House has also launched, and Banks Renewables is encouraging groups and good causes in the surrounding communities to make applications.
An annual allowance of £15,000 is being made available from the fund in support of local community groups, environmental projects and voluntary organisations, while the same amount again will be available every year to support activities related to employment and training opportunities.
A further one-off allocation of £50,000 will be ring-fenced to support energy efficiency and micro-renewables projects for community buildings within the area surrounding the wind farm.
A funding committee made up of community representatives has been set up to help ensure the money is spent in ways which meet local priorities, with Cllr Brian Jones of Darlington Borough Council being appointed as committee chair.
Lewis Stokes, community relations manager at The Banks Group, says: “A huge amount of excellent work has been done by our project and contractor teams on the Moor House wind farm, and it's fantastic to see it all now come to fruition.
"Banks Renewables is one of the UK's leading owner-operators in the onshore wind sector, and as a long-standing County Durham business, we're especially proud to start generating even more clean green electricity within our home region.
"The money available from the Moor House fund will make a big difference to the facilities and activities that local people are able to access, and we've already had a number of interesting initial applications from local groups and good causes.
"The funding committee will be meeting every few months to discuss the best ways in which the revenues coming from the wind farm to the fund can be allocated, and we're therefore keen to see a continuous flow of ideas and grant applications coming our way.
"Onshore wind is recognised as being the most effective technology in delivering carbon reduction targets for the UK at the lowest cost for the consumer, and has a key role to play in generating more of the energy that we all use in powering our homes, businesses, schools and hospitals via renewable means."