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Last Updated: Friday, 1 September 2006, 08:18 GMT 09:18 UK
Council backs wind farm proposal
Wind turbines
The wind farm would provide electricity for up to 750,000 homes
Plans to build the world's biggest wind farm off the coast of Thanet have won the support of the district council.

London Array's scheme will see up to 271 turbines sited 12 miles (19km) off Ramsgate, enough to meet the electricity needs of 750,000 homes.

The Danish-made turbines would be assembled at Ramsgate port where the concrete foundations would also be made creating at least 800 jobs.

The wind farm would be constructed in phases and could be operating by 2010.

New quay

London Array said some of the construction work could prove to be long term, with Ramsgate becoming a centre for manufacturing concrete bases for the giant turbines.

The town could also supply the bases to other offshore wind farms in the future.

Chief executive of Thanet District Council, Richard Samuel, said if the project went ahead a new quay would have to be built in Ramsgate to enable boats to be loaded.

He estimated that it would cost about 10m but said there would be no impact on council tax payers.

"We are looking to fund it in other ways - probably from private sector contributions," he said.

Mr Samuel added that the government still had to grant consent allowing the operators of the wind farm to build in the Thames Estuary.

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