A Fenlander's Diary

PUBLISHED: 13:28 17 February 2006 | UPDATED: 21:42 28 May 2010

BUSINESSMAN Peter Skoulding has been regaling with me with reports of his first successful year as proud owner of a wind turbine. Mr Skoulding, who built the turbine on a two-acre site in the shadow of Whitemoor Prison, says that since the turbine came on

BUSINESSMAN Peter Skoulding has been regaling with me with reports of his first successful year as proud owner of a wind turbine.

Mr Skoulding, who built the turbine on a two-acre site in the shadow of Whitemoor Prison, says that since the turbine came on stream on March 1 last year it has generated enough electricity for 900 homes.

And, given a longer, clearer run, and operating on only a third of its capacity, the turbine is capable of producing enough electricity to provide for more than 1,200 homes.

Mr Skoulding, who I suspect fancies building a second turbine at some stage, visits the Longhill Road site in March almost every day to inspect his pride and joy.

"If I am out of town another of my directors makes the visit," he said.

The main purpose is to check on wildlife "and in that time we have found no birds or bats dead in the vicinity of the turbine," he says.

"By allowing the site to revert to its natural vegetation there has been a very significant increase in wild life in the area," countering one of the arguments levelled in advance of the turbine's construction.

THANKS to Anglian Water for their reminder that not only was Tuesday Valentine's Day, but also the start of National Contraceptive Awareness Week.

Be kind to your toilet, urges our chief provider of water, stating that the toilet is "not the place to dispose of your condoms and femidoms, not to mention other personal products."

Media manager Collette Nicholls says: "The message from Anglian Water is be sewerwise - waste sanitary and pharmaceutical items should be placed in a bag and then put in the rubbish bin.

"For some, contraceptives and sanitary products are delicate subjects. But we have to be realistic. If you flush items such as condoms, femidoms, as well as tampons and applicators, sanitary towels and panty liners down the toilet, they can easily lead to blockages in the pipes causing flooding."

And, just in case, you have doubts about the seriouness of the issue, Collette points out that condoms are not biodegradable and can squeeze through the screening process.

IT may be early to think of Christmas, but in March, as is their wont, the work of the Christmas Lights Committee goes on.

And the collective minds of the committee have not been slow in putting forward ideas for this year, including holding a £1 ticket raffle for the honour of switching on the lights.

For the record the lights 'switch on' has been fixed for December 1.

ADMIRATION aplenty for Terry Huggins, chief executive of our neighbouring local council, South Holland, who is keeping a daily diary of his hectic life on a newly-created website.

Mr Huggins' pontifications can be found on www.terryhuggins.me.uk, and fascinating they are, too. Particularly if last Monday is typical.

He writes that "one of the most exciting things about being a chief executive is never quite knowing what each day will bring.

"I had prepared for the above meeting which was scheduled to start at 9.15 and was planning a gentle run into the week catching up on e-mails, correspondence and the in-tray before the start of smt (senior management team).

By 08.30, a couple of unforeseen issues, with the potential to become high-profile disasters, had hit my desk and suddenly my diary for the rest of the day had to be rearranged. That's life."

And what a joyous life, it must be, although we can expect no such illuminating thoughts from Fenland Hall.

Chief executive Tim Pilsbury told a colleague he would be following Mr Huggins' web blog "with interest".

COULD it possibly be, they inquired in our newsroom, that the 12 votes Jess Hibbert won for Labour in last week's Fenland District Council by-election in Manea constitutes some form of record?

Has anyone achieved a less commendable result? I'd be delighted to hear from readers of similar, or heaven forbid even worse electoral failures anywhere in the Fens.

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