Turbines turning at Ulley wind farm

Ulley Win Farm, Penny Hill, Ulley viewed from bridal path off Axle Lane, South Anston
Ulley Win Farm, Penny Hill, Ulley viewed from bridal path off Axle Lane, South Anston

The switch has been flicked on at the controversial £21.9 million Penny Hill wind farm at Ulley which dominates the landscape for miles around.

Renewable energy is now being generated at the six turbine scheme operated by Barlborough-based Banks Renewables.

Penny Hill is Banks’ third major investment in renewable energy in Yorkshire, following the Marr and Hazlehead wind farms near Doncaster and Barnsley.

The company also has a number of other wind farms across Yorkshire, as well as several others in the north of England and Scotland.

Around 30 jobs have been created on site through the construction, which will help meet Rotherham Council’s renewable energy targets.

Phil Dyke, development director at Banks Renewables, said: “The latest Department of Energy and Climate Change figures show that wind power generated 5.5 per cent of the UK’s electricity needs in 2012, compared to 4 per cent in 2011.”

“But there is an increasingly pressing need for us to generate substantially more of the energy we all use from such indigenous renewable sources.”

“We’re extremely pleased to be playing our part in meeting this crucial objective, and being able to produce clean energy from the Penny Hill wind farm is another landmark in Banks’ continuing success in the renewables sector.”

The Penny Hill benefits fund, which will be worth over £500,000 across its 25-year lifespan, will enable Banks to deliver community and environmental improvements with local people.

Several applications have already been received for the first round of funding, and a local panel will meet in the summer to assess them.

Banks has already invested a further £50,000 to help establish a Warm Zone scheme across the borough, which is already delivering cavity wall and loft insulation into local homes.