Not only has his dream come true but the late Alan Dickie has a wind turbine named after him.

Stage one of Mercury’s Kaiwera Wind Farm was commissioned on Monday.

About 70 people attended the event where Mercury chairwoman Prue Flacks and Gore District Mayor Ben Bell cut the ribbon.

Mr Dickie’s widow Valerie was one of the guests at the commissioning.

In 2006, Trustpower approached the couple about using their farm in Hillary Rd as a possible wind farm site, Mrs Dickie said.

When it came time to sell the farm, the couple kept 88ha ‘‘hoping it would be a wind farm’’.

‘‘We always kept that in our mind that it might progress over time.’’

Mr Dickie died five years ago before Mercury announced its plans and he would have thought the wind farm was ‘‘amazing’’, Mrs Dickie said.

‘‘It was his dream.’’

He would have enjoyed watching the building of the turbines and would have spent all day on the site, she said.

‘‘He just loved machinery.’’

Ms Flacks said the company believed relationships had been built during the project.

‘‘Social licence is something that we must earn through the way we participate and contribute to this community.’’

She paid tribute to Mr Dickie who was an ‘‘enthusiastic supporter of the project’’.

‘‘We’re very proud to have turbine one, which is the one we’ll cut the ribbon on, named Alan’s turbine in memory of clever farmer and a fellow turbine enthusiast .’’

During the build 180,000cu m of earth had been shifted and redistributed on the site, 7000 tonnes of concrete poured, 440 tonnes of reinforced steel used, 6500m of cabling installed, 18km of overhead line to the Gore substation built, 90 components transported from Bluff to Kaiwera, 400 people inducted on to the site and almost 140,000 hours worked.

‘‘These figures illustrate the sheer scale of the task.’’

Mr Bell said it was a pleasure to be back about a year after he had been part of the sod-turning ceremony.

‘‘Every time I look up at the windmills here it does remind me of the journey that not only I’ve been on, but the community’s been on and that everyone here today has been on.

‘‘It also makes me think looking up at the skyline just how modern it makes our town look.’’

For the project to be completed under time and under budget was ‘‘nothing short of a miracle’’.

Hokonui Runanga Kaupapa Taiao environmental adviser Ta ¯ne Ta ¯mati said it was good to see the transition from fossil fuels to projects producing clean energy.

There are 10 turbines at 145m tall.

Mercury is in the process of planning stage two and recently amended its resource consent for the project.

The change to the resource consent, approved by the Gore District Council in July, allows for 66 turbines at a height of 165m, noting the remaining 53 turbines to be built would be 165m tall.