life at natural power

Louise Renton

Wind farm operations assistant

What does your role entail?

As part of a site management team, I assist with the day-to-day management of operational and administrative activities of one of the UK’s largest onshore wind farms


What does your day typically consist of? 

Anyone who has worked on a wind farm knows there is most certainly no “typical” day! It is a long-standing joke that when things become “challenging” we blame it on the disobedient local monks who were banished from a nearby abbey in years gone by!

Generally, I provide operational and admin support to the site operations manager and our client. This includes overseeing vital equipment and ensuring that it is always in a state of full repair and calibration; financial management; reporting on health and safety; co-ordinating facilities management activities; carrying out monthly site inspections; and inducting visitors on to the site.


What do you enjoy most about your role?

I enjoy the dynamic environment and the fact that you really do not know what can happen in a day! That can prove challenging. On the other hand, it is also rewarding when you manage to sort an issue out and get a positive outcome.

I really enjoy working in an environment where I get to see so much wildlife. I was lucky enough to see the residents of the owl breeding boxes our ecologists have on site which just made my day! I am known as the “Dr Doolittle” on site. I rescued an injured buzzard on the outskirts of site that was hopping along the track. I brought him back to the office until the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) arrived to take him away. They rehabilitated him and released him back at site. I  also rescued a deer that was stuck on a fence one morning on my way into work. All in a day’s work at the wind farm! The flip side of that is that I have been in close proximity to the adders that reside on site. I also came across hundreds of toads in breeding season on the tracks which nearly killed me off as I have a fear of frogs. I was very brave that day!


How did you get into the role in the first place?

I saw an advert in a local newspaper advert for an administrator, but the role naturally developed into operations assistant. I previously worked as a firefighter, so the thought of being at height did not phase me in this job. 


What is the most interesting part of the job and why?

I think working in a pressured and high energy environment means you must be able to adapt to constant “curveballs” and associated challenges that comes with that. The ability to plan an ever-changing workload is a key skill in this job as well as being able to adapt to a to- do list that is never empty!


What is your biggest achievement at work?

The role was very different when I started, and it has grown hugely as the site has expanded.  I was integral in the set-up of the site office. It was a bare shell when we moved in, so everything needed to be done, such as sourcing furniture, utilities and getting contractors for facilities work.