Wind Turbine For Hackney Marshes

Dean Nicholas
By Dean Nicholas Last edited 105 months ago
Wind Turbine For Hackney Marshes


Hackney already experimented with wind power this past summer, and the council is now contemplating a bigger project: a public consultation is underway asking residents their opinion on a 120-metre high wind turbine for Hackney Marshes.

The proposal comes via the Olympic Delivery Authority, who envision a Hackney turbine as a quick route to their stated aim of generating local renewable energy for the 2012 legacy. One turbine is already going ahead on nearby Eton Manor, part of Waltham Forest, and the pair of them could one day power all of the Hackney's street lamps. The consultation runs until 14th December, and locals can have their say on the proposal or complete a survey. The council have also produced a lengthy FAQ page.

Wind farms have their advocates and detractors, and the siting of a turbine on the contested East Marsh, which amidst much local rancour is being concreted over for an Olympic-worthy disabled car park before reverting to sports pitches after the Games end, will be controversial.

It'll also give cause to a lyrically re-jigged version of Gus Elen's famous number, to be sung by Winehouse or Leona or whichever London crooner fancies a crack:

"'...Wiv a ladder and some glasses,

You could see to Hackney Marshes,

If it wasn't for the turbine in between."

Last Updated 22 October 2009


1) The site for the Turbine is Common Land, control of land will be handed over to private interest energy company or companies.

2)The Turbine could be sited anywhere else and the energy transmitted by cable to Hackney in the normal way.

3) A series of smaller turbines would generate the same energy with reduced impact on the environment.

4) Hackney Marshes and the greater Lea-Marshes still provide an experience of a rural environment in close proximity to very dense housing conurbations. The open horizens and 'big sky' are a key element of this. A towering structure, combined with large-scale housing developments through the Lea Marshes will destroy this forever.

 The choice between football and the environment is a cruelly false one. It disguises the take-over of common land by private companies. It plays on people's capacity to surrender something for the greater good. For shades of things to come, go to Millfields Recreation Ground, E5, and see the land grab being carried out by the National Grid and EDF by their redeveloped power station.

The is a lot more to Hackney Marshes than football. They are part of the greater Lea MArshes, a semi rural space with wide horizens and open skies existing in close proximity to very dense housing conurbations. This space is threatened on all sides and is about to be cut through by high-rise housing developments, courtesy of Waltham Forest Council.

 If Hackney schools were teaching children the pleasures and the meaning of the enjoyment of the countryside, those same children would eventually be spending more time outdoors and less time indoors with the heating thermostat at maximum while they play at 'virtual outdoors' electronic games. This would also fit with the Governments Horizens project. This aims to reduce the fast growing epdemic of personal depression by supplying children with meaningful emotional experiences. No fast profits in  that though! is there?... except perhaps the gains for the ecology and well-being of our shared world.