COMMUNITY ownership of part of the proposed Bullington Cross wind farm has moved closer with an initial agreement with the developer.

The Hampshire Energy Group (HEG) co-operative has signed a formal memorandum of understanding (MOU) with EDF Energy Renewables.

The proposed Bullington Cross community share ownership scheme will give HEG the option to buy a revenue share of up to 10 per cent in the wind farm.

Funds generated by the stake will be used to pay annual interest to members, with any surplus re-invested in other local renewable energy projects.

Martin Heath, HEG spokesman, said: “This is a great step forward for community energy in Hampshire. This will give our community the opportunity to invest in and benefit from wind farming.

“It’s the first time a community wind farm has been developed in Hampshire and will hopefully be the first of many community energy projects in the county.”

Mr Heath added, “There is still a lot of discussion required with EDF Energy Renewables to complete the deal, but the MOU is an important step.”

Darren Cuming, onshore wind development manager at EDF, said: “The discussions with HEG have been very positive and we are delighted to have reached this initial agreement.

“The MOU confirms the intention of both parties and our support for their community share proposal.

“Negotiations will now continue to further develop the details of the agreement.”