First of giant blades arrive

A giant blade arrives at Hartlepool
A giant blade arrives at Hartlepool

GIANT blades for a string of off-the-coast wind turbines have started to arrive in Hartlepool.

Hartlepool is the main construction hub for the Teesside Offshore Windfarm – a massive project to build 27 turbines off the Teesside coastline.

Delighted bosses of the project say the plan to have the EDF Energy Renewables scheme, off the coast of Redcar, up and running by this autumn is well on track.

Already, 23 out of the 27 of the base structures, called monopiles, have been installed slightly ahead of schedule.

Once the rest have been completed, the next phase can begin.

It will involve the turbine towers, rotor hubs and the blades being installed – and they have already begun arriving in Hartlepool.

A spokesman said: “The first two turbines arrived over the weekend. We expect four Siemens turbines to arrive weekly between now and the end of June.

“Assembly will then take place onshore during July for installation to take place in August and September.”

Subject to weather and sea conditions, the first electricity could be generated from the windfarm some time in the autumn.

Hartlepool was chosen as the hub for the Redcar project because of its port’s deep water and dedicated assembly areas with direct access to the North Sea.

The 27 turbines will be installed in three rows, in water depths of around 50ft with at least 900ft between each turbine and 1,900ft between each row.

The turbines will be more than 380ft high and the closest one to shore will be about one mile off the coastline.

When operational, the capacity of the 2.3 megawatt turbines will be 62 megawatts which is enough green energy to power up to 40,000 households.