Heckington Fen wind farm

Wind farm from car

It’s strange to have the area in the news briefly, when most people we know from our old life had never heard the name Heckington before. Ecotricity, green energy developers and suppliers, has had plans for some time for a big wind farm development on Heckington Fen, a few miles away from us. It’s been in the news this week because it has finally been approved.

The pattern of development here is interesting. There is a string of villages along what is called the fen edge, from Heckington and southwards to Bourne, each with a rectangular parcel of fen stretching eastwards from the village. So Heckington Fen itself is quite a way from the village it belongs to. There is a much smaller settlement, East Heckington, which will be more immediately affected by the development.

There is no doubt that gigantic turbines change the view across this open, agricultural landscape, as electricity pylons did when they first appeared. And, like pylons, they have a strange grace all their own. When I hear people call them ugly, I think, no, ‘ugly’ is Aberfan, is Chernobyl, Windscale. Our insatiable desire for energy, at low cost and with a childish disregard of consequences for other people in other places, other times, is certainly ugly when you look it in the face.

Enough of that: this was meant to be a cheery note to say the wind farm will be an interesting development in the area. Wind energy was used in the draining of the fens, before the arrival of steam, as well as for grinding corn and powering sawmills. See my post on Heckington Windmill, about which I will no doubt write more in future.

Photo of a wind farm above was taken from the window of the camper on our drive through the wolds. One below is a huge offshore one that you see from Skegness beach.

Skegness wind farm

One thought on “Heckington Fen wind farm

  1. I love windfarms, but then not much chance of one being built on my doorstep! Every year when we go down to St Ives, we look out for the windfarms on the way, familiar landmarks that tell us we’re nearly there. There is a single turbine (is that the right word?) right next to the M4 between Bracknell and Reading, near where my sister lives, and its mesmerising. It looks rather lonely on its own, but I could watch it for ages, quietly turning, turning, turning.

    I love pylons too, it may be sentimental but the sight of those giant figures striding across the landscape holding up their skirts, linked by the rhythmic dip of wires in parallel lines, is something I find incredibly poignant. Maybe it’s their huge scale against the smallness of other interventions in the landscape; field boundaries, clusters of buildings, the ribbon of motorway (which is usually where I’m located), the small-scale busy-ness of human lives against the backdrop of these great big, still things. They almost seem vulnerable, laid bare against the sky.

    So three cheers for the pylon and windfarm! Come and build some in Manchester!

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