A full year after we first enquired about getting a wind turbine for Hedgerley Wood from Windsave the man finally arrived to survey the site.
His first conclusion was that there was no way we would get enough wind speed, given how the house is surrounded by trees. He said that the predominent wind direction in the UK was from the South West and we have dense woodland in that direction.
But even if there had been a sufficient prospect of wind, we had the wrong kind of house. He showed me the kind of fixing needed, which depends on long bolts locked into brickwork. He showed me a picture of how it should work – definitely heavy duty and not really DIY.
So no wind turbine for us here. At least we have the comfort from George Monbiot’s talk at the Sheldonian last week that it probably wouldn’t have provided much electricity anyway – around 5% of our needs, he claimed. And we save the £1,500 investment.
So now we have to go back to the idea of buying a part-share in a turbine sited somewhere more suitable and feeding directly into the national grid. But given the likely low price we would get for what we generated, why are we doing this anyway, rather than leaving generation to the governement? On this point as well George is sceptical about micro generation.
The evening with George at the Sheldonian was a remarkable one.
Check here to listen to audio as we recorded it that night.(coming later)