Hundreds signing petition as protest against huge Wolverhampton turbine gathers speed

Hundreds of people have signed a petition to stop a wind turbine, taller than England's highest cathedral spire, being built in Wolverhampton.

Hundreds signing petition as protest against huge Wolverhampton turbine gathers speed

Opposition to UTC Aerospace's plans to build the huge turbine at its Stafford Road site in the Fordhouses area is gathering pace, with more than 300 people having signed up to express their dismay at the proposal.

In September, the Express & Star revealed that UTC is looking to commission CleanEarth to build the turbine, which would dwarf Victoria Halls student accommodation – the city's highest building.

A public consultation has been held with residents in the area, who voiced their concerns, while bosses at UTC insist saving cash and using green energy will enable the firm to grow and potentially provide new jobs.

Protester Brian Bromley, of Milldale Crescent, said: "We have just had another meeting to decide what we are going to do next. We have 500 leaflets on order so we will be dropping those into people's homes to help them understand the full extent and impact of what would happen if this turbine was built.

"A lot of people don't really realise what it would mean to the communities around here. We need to drive home that message.

"Our target is to get 500 signatures on the petition. We should have no problem achieving that. Hopefully, we will get the support of our MPs and councillors too. I believe the size of this turbine constitutes a hazardous external installation of large unshielded moving machinery. This turbine proposal should be subject to full risk assessment of the major hazards of flying debris in the event of a possible structural failure of the rotating turbine blades.

"Even though the likelihood of this happening may be statistically small, consequences should it occur however could be catastrophic.

"Remember, this proposed site is bordered by two major very busy highway links with the M54 on one side and the A449 Stafford Road on the other and also being very close to highly populated areas," said Mr Bromley.

Robert Hupfer, general manager for actuation and propeller systems at UTC, previously pledged to hold more consultations if necessary, and insisted that the turbine is crucial for the company to continue its growth.

He said: "It's a change for people.The people need to be heard and we will hold more consultations if they need it.

"Noise is a big issue for people which is why we are taking all these measurements to make sure it is kept to a minimum. The look of it for people is subjective."

The official plans are expected to be lodged with the city council at any time.

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