Wind farm finance is set

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The Irish renewable energy company that bought the 13 turbine Quixwood Moor wind farm last year, has secured the finance necessary to complete its construction.

NTR Plc announced the £44.9 million deal with Royal Bank of Scotland last week, adding that construction is underway and the wind farm scheduled to come online in early 2017.

It was Banks Renewables who took the development through the planning application stage, getting planning permission in April 2013. They sold the consented wind farm to NTR last year, the new owners confirming that the community funding commitment made by Banks Renewables will be fulfilled.

Onshore wind farms changing hands before they are operational has increased in recent years - Berwickshire examples include Fallago Rig wind farm in the Lammermuirs and Drone Hill on Coldingham Moor. One company takes responsibility for getting the wind farm application through the planning stage, construction is sometimes by done by another and the final operating company may be different again.

Finance experts believe that part of the reason is that pension funds want the consistent yields the wind farms have to offer while utilities companies are keen to sell plants to reduce debt and build up cash.

When Banks Renewables sold their interest in Quixwood last year. executive director Richard Dunkley said: “This is a strategic decision that will support our long-term ambition of developing, constructing and operating a sizeable portfolio of onshore wind farms across the North of England and Scotland.

“We currently have an extensive development pipeline in these locations at various stages of the planning process, and the capital realised by this deal provides the resources required to help fund the development and construction of further schemes.”