Local Democracy

what’s the role of local democracy?

 

TW312 have been asked to help local people fight the Mochrum Fell wind farm appeal and we have agreed to send out their request.  Please help if you can!

 

 "After a spectacular victory when the Dumfries & Galloway Council Planning Committee unanimously refused the Mochrum Fell wind farm application on landscape, visual amenity, scale and cumulative issue grounds, the developers chose the last day of their 3 month period allowed to lodge an appeal with the DPEA citing a lack of Policy References in the Decision Notice.
 

Objectors had just 14 days to submit a further response and we are very grateful to all of you who did so. The next step is the publicising of the appellants late revised Cumulative Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment report (CLVIA) which has been advertised locally and in the Edinburgh Gazette.
 
We now have 28 days –until Friday 27/11/2015 – to make further comments on the revised CLVIA to the DPEA. We hope as many as possible will respond to this – it does not need a lengthy letter, just a quick email to say your previous objection still stands or if you haven't objected previously that you would like to object to the proposal.  Please feel free to add more points to the draft comments below.
 
We have come so far together and we must protect this hard won victory, if not, it will be open season within 10km of Mochrum Fell.   Currently there are 10 proposals (including Loch Urr) at various stages of construction, planning or scoping, making a total of 157 wind turbines potentially overwhelming this beautiful landscape. 

Please help make this a lasting victory and send a clear message to the developers – enough is enough!
 
A sincere thank you to you all.

 

_________________________________________________________
 
Sample DPEA responses are below if you wish to use them.
 
Use the first one if you have objected previously and the second one, if you have not previously objected but would like to put in an objection now.
                                                 
Fiona.Manson@gov.scot
 
Reference  PPA-170-2102 
 
Mochrum Fell Wind Farm Appeal
 
I would like to confirm that my previous objection to this application still stands firm following the updated Landscape report. Please dismiss this appeal and refuse the application.
 
Yours faithfully,
 
Name
Address
Date

 
________________________________________________________________
 
Fiona.Manson@gov.scot
 
Reference  PPA-170-2102  
 
Mochrum Fell Wind Farm Appeal
 
Following the advertisement of the updated Landscape information for the Mochrum Fell wind farm application, I would like to strongly object to this application due to the serious landscape impacts, cumulative issues and the fact that turbines of this size would overpower the landscape and be visible from long distances away. 
 
In addition, the infrastructure of giant substations and upgraded pylons to transport this electricity would be totally unacceptable.
 
Please dismiss this appeal and refuse planning permission for the proposed development.
 
Yours faithfully,
 
Name
Address
Date

 

________________________________________________________________

 

For posted responses – please send to :-
 
The Directorate for Planning and Environmental Appeals (DPEA)
4 The Courtyard
Callendar Business Park
Callendar Road
Falkirk
FK1 1XR

 

________________________________________________________________

 

Please remember to quote Reference PPA-170-2102 in all correspondence.

 

Documents relating to the appela can be viewed by clicking here

 

 

After the fantastic news earlier in the month that the Barcloy Hill Appeal was refused by the Scottish Government Reporter, we are brought back down to earth with the latest developments from Banks Renewables in relation to their Knockendurrick proposal.

 

The current application for 7 x 132m turbines on Irelandton Moor, near Twynholm, has an agreed decision date for the end of October.  But it would appear that Banks have little faith in their submitted Environmental Statement, which argues that the proposal conforms to the Local Development Plan (LDP).

 

Banks will be submitting an amendment to their plans which include a reduction in the height of the turbines (6 x 115m & 1 x 100m) and moving their locations further to the east.  We have to wait for the exact details to be presented to council before the public can submit further comments.

 

These changes are supposedly due to further ‘community consultation’ but TW312 have been unable (so far) to discover any ‘community consultation’ as no public meetings, community council meetings, or landscape impact discussions have been conducted according to the council and Scottish Natural Heritage.

The development has also been renamed the Knockendurrick Community wind farm and the potential stake for community ownership has been increased from 5 to 10%.  The question is, does a 10% stake in the wind farm entitle it to be called ‘community’?

 

The PR machine at Banks is certainly doing the business with carefully crafted statements that convey that their ‘development with care’ philosophy is to the fore when the reality is something totally different.  With Banks it seems that it's more than turbines that 'spin'!

 

We have been a little late in reporting this important news – perhaps too busy celebrating. However, finally, after 4 missed decision target dates we know the outcome of the Barcloy Hill wind farm appeal.

 

It's good news for local residents with the Reporter dismissing the appeal.

 

The Reporter supported the council's and SNH's assessments and guidance from the Dumfries and Galloway Wind Farm Landscape Capacity Study (DGWLCS), including that:-

 

  • the local landscape is medium in scale with some small scale features which do not have the capacity to absorb large turbines.  This was in contrast to the developer's assertion that the landscape scale was medium-large.

  • Scottish Natural Heritage's (SNH) guidance on siting wind farms, which identifies turbines should be of minor vertical scale in relation to key landscape features, (ideally no more than one third the height) should be considered. She highlighted how the turbines would be almost the same height as the ridge which would have the effect of "minimising the height of the ridge" and "make it look smaller".

 

  • the "development would have a detrimental impact on Bengairn both in terms of how it would be viewed from outwith the NSA and also on the views available from its summit." thus conflicting with local policy NE1.

 

  • there would be a detrimental impact on the nearby Regional Scenic Area and significant visual impacts for several residents close to the site.

 

  • the Reporter also noted that the developer included no assesment of the impact on resdential amenity in their submission

 

The Reporter did NOT agree with the developer's assessment that the Barcloy ridge was not a particularly prominent feature and highlighted "that the photomontages in the Environmental Statement are not a true representation of the prominence of Barcloy hill as it is seen in real life from various viewpoints."

 

The conclusion was that "the proposed development does not accord overall with the relevant provisions of the development plan and that there are no material considerations which would justify granting planning permission".

Barcloy mast

After 5 years of stress fighting this proposal, there is relief for many in the area. It was the appearance of the intital 80 metre met mast on Barcloy Hill (May 2010) that first alerted local residents to the potential invasion of very large turbines in this scenic area and to the formation of Turbine Watch 312. We will keep going and will continue to actively oppose windfarm proposals wherever, in the OS 312 area, we think they are inappropriate.
 
Thank you to all those who supported us in this campaign!

 

IMG_1693thumb

At the October 14, 2014 Brown County Board of Health meeting, a motion was unanimously approved declaring the Shirley Wind turbines a "Human Health Hazard".  The text of the unanimously approved motion reads:

 

"To declare the Industrial Wind Turbines at Shirley Wind Project in the Town of Glenmore, Brown County, WI. A Human Health Hazard for all people (residents, workers, visitors, and sensitive passersby) who are exposed to Infrasound/Low Frequency Noise and other emissions potentially harmful to human health."

 

Visit BBCRWE wesbite for more info.

Please send any expressions of support and, if applicable, your expereinces to:  BOHsupport@bccrwe.com   

 

The Knockenduurrick application is now open for comment and members of TW312 have been reading the Environmental Statement submitted by Banks.

 

Key points:-

 

Banks contend that seven 132m high turbines, planned near Twynholm and the Glengap Forest, are suitable for the proposed location based on the guidance from the Dumfries and Galloway Landscape Assessment of 1998, which acknowledges that the intended site could be suitable for a wind farm.

 

The key point Banks have conveniently ignored though, is that this document refers to turbines of approximately 60m to tip as was usual for that era.  Current guidance in the Dumfries and Galloway Wind Farm Landscape Capacity Study (LCS) is quite clear that this size of turbine is not suitable for the complex landform.

 

Banks also admit that 19% of the Fleet Valley National Scenic Area (NSA) will experience significant adverse effects on the landscape character – but then decide in the big scheme of things that isn't important!

As such, only a small percentage of the NSA (19 % of the total land area) would experience significant adverse effects on landscape character. This leads to the conclusion that the effects would not be significant overall

 

Turbines would be visible from Vennie Hill, Rutherford's Monument, Cardoness Castle, Mossyard, Barstobrick (Neilson's Monument) parts of Kircudbright including some of the Conservation Area, Twynholm, Ringford, Borgue and Gatehouse.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Approximation of the view from Mossyard if Knockendurrick is builtOur thanks to John Smith for his kind permission to use his stunning photomontages.

 

Banks are asking for the turbines to be able to operate at a higher noise level than is usual for a development of this size.  This is due to the cumulative effect with the operating/consented smaller farm turbines in the area.  There are over 30 properties within 2km and 15 are predicted to experience significant adverse visual effects.

 

We are still reading the ES and will post more information when we can

 

 

TW312 firmly believes that this development is inappropriate for the location.

 

We have provided a specimen objection letter (below) you can copy that includes some key points.

 

It is better to rewrite the objection in your own words but we know people don’t always have time.  Every objection submitted is important

 

If more than one person from your household wants to object please send the objection in from each separate person.  One objection signed by more than one person still only counts as one!

 

Remember to include your name, address and date, for validity (posted objections must also be signed)

 

Email to

PlanningRepresentations@dumgal.gov.uk

 

Post to 

Head of Planning and Building Standards

Dumfries and Galloway Council

Kirkbank

English Street

Dumfries

DG1 2HS

 

 Objections must be submitted by 5pm Thursday 28th November 2013 

 

If you object via email or letter and receive one of the objection cards through your letterbox, please pass the card onto someone you think may be prepared to object.

 

Thank you!

 

Please note: It is better to rewrite the objection in your own words but we know people don’t always have time.  Every objection submitted is important

 

If more than one person from your household wants to object please send the objection in from each separate person.  One objection signed by more than one person still only counts as one!

 

Remember to include your name, address and date for validity (posted objections must also be signed)

 

Email to

PlanningRepresentations@dumgal.gov.uk

 

Post to 

Head of Planning and Building Standards

Dumfries and Galloway Council

Kirkbank

English Street

Dumfries

DG1 2HS

 

 Objections must be submitted by 5pm Thursday 28th November 2013 

 

If you object by email or letter and have also received one of the objection cards through your letterbox, please pass the card onto someone you think may be prepared to object.

 

Thank you!

 

[please copy the text below the line or view as PDF or downlaod as a Word file]

CLICK HERE to see the specimen objection letter as a pdf document (best for copying)

CLICK HERE to download the letter as a Word document

 


 

[your address]

 

 

[date]

 

 

Head of Planning and Building Standards

Dumfries and Galloway Council

Kirkbank

English Street

Dumfries

DG1 2HS

 

 

Dear Planning Officer,

 

Planning Application    13/P/2/0284

Erection of 7 x 132m wind turbines and associated infrastructure at Knockendurrick, Irelandton, Twynholm

 

 

I object to this application on the following grounds:-

 

  • Approval of this scheme would set a precedent and open the area to further large scale turbines.

 

  • The proposed size of turbine is contrary to the detailed guidance in the Dumfries and Galloway Wind Farm Landscape Capacity Study which concludes “There is no scope for siting the large typology within this landscape due to the scale of these foothills and their likely prominence from adjacent sensitive landscapes.”

 

  • The height of these turbines will diminish the scale of the landmark hills of Knockendurrick, Cairntosh, Fuffock and Bengray. Scottish Natural Heritage advises turbines should not be more than one third of the height of key landscape features.

 

  • The predicted significant adverse impact on approximately one fifth of the Fleet Valley National Scenic Area is unacceptable and I disagree with the applicant’s conclusion that (6.318 Environmental Statement) “This leads to the conclusion that the effects would not be significant overall.”   Turbines would be highly visible from Vennie Hill, Rutherford’s Monument, Cardoness Castle, Mossyard  and around Sandgreen

 

  • The development will have a wide visual impact affecting parts of Kirkcudbright, Twynholm, Gatehouse of Fleet, Borgue and Ringford (including Neilson’s Monument at Barstobrick) as well as more distant settlements and visitors driving in and around the National and Regional Scenic Areas.

 

  • There are over 30 properties within 2km and 15 properties will suffer significant adverse visual effects (ref Appendix 6.7).  Local people face a potential reduction in their quality of life, property values and tourism businesses.  Emerging evidence indicates that wind turbines can impact indirectly on health due to disrupted sleep, stress and annoyance from noise.  These effects can then cause problems such as loss of concentration and cardiovascular problems.

 

 

This proposal breaches SPP 127, 187 and local policies S21, E3, E6, GP7, GP24, D36 and the IPP.

 

I do not believe the benefits of this development will outweigh the negative impacts and hope you refuse this application.

 

Yours faithfully,

 

[your signature if sending by post]

 

[your name]

 

CLICK HERE to see the specimen objection letter as a pdf document (best for copying)

CLICK HERE to download the letter as a Word document

 

Want to let Alex Salmond know what you think about his plans to cover D&G with a possible 1200 turbines?

 

Join TW312, Save Loch Urr and other local groups on a protest march in Perth at the SNP conference 19th October.

 

Transport available with local pick-ups CD, Dumfries, Dalry etc.  £10 – £15 a head (depending on numbers)

Leaving approx 8.30am

 

  All welcome.

 

To book or for further information, ring Alan on 01556 670692 now or email

 

afkeith@btinternet.com

 

 

The planning application for 11 x 100m high turbines at Loch Hill just outside Dalry was refused by councillors this morning.

SAM_1392

 

The vote went 8-6 in favour of rejecting the proposal on landscape and cumulative impact grounds.

 

Before the Planning Application Committee meeting there was a protest by members of GLARE, Save Loch Urr and TW312.

 

 

Well done to all those who attended!

 

A forum has been set up to help baffled locals make sense of the Knockendurrick windfarm plans on Irelandton Moor near Twynholm.

 

The group consists of community councillors from seven towns and villages.

 

Mike Edwards, member of Gatehouse Community Council, said….

“The windfarm people put a glossy spin on things. If you look at the data, sometimes it’s way out of proportion.

“Once you get into the technical side of things it can get very confusing. We are trying to present information in a way that’s straightforward and easy to understand.”

 

The dates, times and venues of the forums are:-

 

Friday13th Sept         6pm  to 8pm     Twynholm Village Hall
 
Saturday 14th Sept    10.30am to 1pm      KBT Scout Hall (Behind the Parish Church)
 
Saturday 14th Sept    2.30pm to  5.00pm     Castle Douglas Town Hall
 
Sunday 15th Sept      12noon to 2.30pm     Gatehouse Community Center

 

3 x 100m turbines at Chapman's Howe Wind Farm

at

Hartburn Farm, Kirkcudbright

 

Please, we need as many genuine objections as possible as we are aware that there is a support 'campaign' ongoing.  Please pass this on to as many people as you can and show the developers and our councillors that we care about the landscape of D & G.

 

CH_panorama_1_600px

Proposed 3 x 100m turbines near Hartburn Farm, Kirkcudbright

Click on the photo to see a larger image.

 

The 2 x 20m turbines on site will be removed if Chapman's Howe is approved.  They are barely visible to the left but show the difference in size!  This is an approximation of what the development will look like.

 

The site lies off the B727 (National Cycle Route 7) which is the Gelston to Kirkcudbright road, between Nether Linkins and Whinnieliggate and is adjacent to the proposed Barcloy Hill development.

 

The site is not ‘up in the hills’ and away from people as there are 26 properties within 2km.

 

The development would be located in a very complex landscape which is unique in Dumfries and Galloway.  On the cusp of coastal granite uplands and peninsula landscape character types, turbines of this height would dominate the iconic ridgeline of Screel, Bengairn/Barcloy contravening local policy.

 

Dumfries & Galloway Council's responsibility is to ensure a balance between turbine development and the amenity value of local landscapes. These landscape types have been assessed for local Council policy as NOT being suitable for turbines over 50 – 55m to tip.  If these turbines (or any turbines over 55m) are approved it will set a precedent for this area.  This would render the council’s latest planning policy ineffective for any other turbine developments  – wasting a great deal of public money. More importantly there would be no effective means of protecting valuable local landscapes against the industrialising effects of very big turbine development.

 

 

Barcloy Ridge

 

The Barcloy Ridge – photo taken from B727 near Sypland.  Note the 80m mast to the right that towers above the Barcloy ridge line.  The foreground is the Chapman's Howe site and the turbines would be approximately the same tip height as the mast tip!

Barcloy mast


TW312 firmly believes that this development is inappropriate for the location and is contrary to Council poilcy.


 

Below are 2 specimen objection letters that you may copy and paste into your own document

 

It is better to rewrite the objection in your own words but we know people don’t always have time.  Every objection submitted is important.

 

If more than one person from your household wants to object please send an objection in from each person.  One objection letter signed by several people still only counts as a single objection!

 

Remember to include your name, address and date for validity (posted objections must also be signed)

Email to: PlanningRepresentations@dumgal.gov.uk

 

Or post to:       

Head of Planning and Building Standards

Dumfries and Galloway Council

Kirkbank

English Street

Dumfries

DG1 2HS

 

Objections must be submitted by 5pm Thursday 15th August 2013

 

If you object via email or letter and don't intend to use  one of the objection cards received through your letterbox, please pass the card onto someone you think may be prepared to object.

 

Thank you!

 


[version1]

 

[Address]

 

[Date]

 

Head of Planning and Building Standards

Dumfries and Galloway Council

Kirkbank

English Street

Dumfries

DG1 2HS

 

Dear Planning Officer,

 

Planning Application    13/P/2/0189

Erection of 3 x 100m wind turbines and associated infrastructure

at Chapman's Howe, Hartburn Farm, Kirkcudbright

 

I object to this application on the following grounds:-

 

Approval of this scheme would set a precedent and open the area to further large scale turbines.

 

The proposed size of turbine is contrary to the guidance detailed in the Dumfries and Galloway Wind Farm Landscape Capacity Study, which identifies turbines of 50-55m to tip as being more appropriate for this site.

 

The height of these turbines will diminish the scale of the landmark hills and ridge line of Screel, Bengairn and Barcloy. Scottish Natural Heritage advises turbines should not be more than one third of the height of key landmarks (such as these coastal granite hills).

 

The turbines would be too close to several properties but one in particular will experience an over-bearing presence with all 3 turbines located within 750m.  Local people face a potential adverse impact on their quality of life and property values.  Emerging evidence indicates that wind turbines can impact indirectly on health due to stress and annoyance from noise, which are known to cause problems such as disrupted sleep, tinnitus, loss of concentration and cardiovascular problems.

 

Excessive amounts of construction traffic and abnormal loads will travel through Gelston and along minor roads over a six month period.

 

The site supports a variety of wildlife which could suffer through loss of foraging/disturbance of habitat and many wintering birds pass through the site on their way to and from feeding grounds.

 

There will be a significant adverse impact on the setting of archaeological features such as Kirkbride Settlement and Dungarry Fort.

 

This proposal breaches SPP 127, 187 and local policies S21, E3, E6, GP7, GP24, D36 and the IPP.

 

I do not believe the benefits of this development will outweigh the negative impacts and hope you refuse this application.

 

Yours faithfully,

 

[Name & Signature]

 


[Version 2 – more detailed]

 

[Address]

 

[Date]

 

Head of Planning and Building Standards

Dumfries and Galloway Council

Kirkbank

English Street

Dumfries

DG1 2HS

 

Dear Planning Officer,

 

Planning Application    13/P/2/0189

Erection of 3 x 100m wind turbines and associated infrastructure

at Chapman's Howe, Hartburn Farm, Kirkcudbright

 

I object to this application on the following grounds:-

 

Setting a precedent

 

Approval of this scheme would set a precedent and open the area to further large scale turbines which would prove difficult to stop.  SNH have raised concerns in their scoping response for the adjacent Barcloy Hill “that permitting the use of large turbines in this location would set a precedent for their widespread use in this area”.

 

Size of turbines

 

The site sits on the boundaries of 2 landscape character types (peninsula and coastal granite uplands).  The Dumfries and Galloway Wind Farm Landscape Capacity Study (LCS) indicates that neither landscape type is suitable for turbines of this size by stating that:-

 

“There is no scope for the larger typologies to be located within the Dundrennan peninsula without significant adverse effects occurring on a number of key sensitivity criteria.”

 

“There is no scope for the large typology to be located within the Bengairn unit of the Coastal Granite Uplands without significant adverse effects occurring across a wide range of sensitivities.”

 

The Landscape Capacity Study classification for Coastal Granite Uplands, identifies turbines at the lower end of medium typology (50-55m to tip) as being more appropriate for this site.

 

“Scale and openness:-   there may be some limited opportunity to locate turbines towards the lower height band of this typology (and limited numbers of turbines) to avoid dominating the vertical scale of key hills.”

 

“Landform and shape:-   There may be some limited scope to locate lower (height) turbines on slacker lower hill slopes and less complex undulating moorland in the north-west and west of this unit to minimise effects on adjacent more dramatic rugged hills”.

 

“Landscape context:-   there may be some increased scope to locate turbines towards the lower height band of this typology in areas where the landmark hills are less pronounced”

 

"Landscape values:-   This typology may also affect the setting of the landmark hills if located in undesignated parts of this landscape unit of the Coastal Granite Uplands."

 

However, the applicant fails to make a convincing case that the locality is appropriate for 100m turbines to tip.  They completely fail to address the issue of the scale of the turbines in relation to the height of the landmark hills of Bengairn, Barcloy and Suie Hill.

 

Guidance from SNH 2009, states that wind farms of good design are typically “Of minor vertical scale in relation to the key features of the landscape (typically less than one third)”

 

This proposal is for  turbines to be  sited approximately 135m below the Barcloy ridgeline. SNH's guidance (above) would mean limiting the height of  turbines to no more than 50m.  This guidance backs the advice in the LCS, which is further supported by the fact that, to date, there are no approved turbines over 55m in the area with several proposals ranging from 74m to 130m being refused by the council and/or the Scottish Government.

 

Turbines of 100m to tip will have the effect of diminishing the scale of this iconic ridge and in many views the turbines will be visible on the skyline.  Views to and from these hills will be disrupted by the moving blades.

 

The landscape around the site is unique and complex and the introduction of large industrial generators will detract from these rare, special qualities as they would appear out of scale with the surrounding landscape and the small landscape features of gorse, hedgerows and mature trees. The applicant tries to down-grade the landscape sensitivity of the site and this tactic should not be entertained.

 

 

Impacts on National Scenic Area (NSA) and Regional Scenic Area (RSA)

 

There is a tendency for wind developers to devalue the inland setting of the coastal granite uplands.  The Screel/Bengairn/Barcloy ridge performs an important function as the background setting for Castle Douglas and for views across the wider area.

 

The LCS identifies that uninterrupted views to and from Bengairn are important.  This does not only mean out to the coastal views but as a 360 ° experience.  The piecemeal erosion of parts of the NSA and RSA should not be tolerated.  At just over 3km distance from Bengairn these turbines will introduce large, vertical, moving, man made structures which will detract significantly from the vistas.

 

The RSA is just 400m away and actually extends towards the site beyond the NSA boundary.  This whole area is worthy of National Park status and the small scale of our NSA’s and RSA’s should be fiercely protected.

 

 

Impacts on Residential Amenity

       

The turbines would be far too close to nearby properties with all 3 turbines ranging from approximately 650 – 750m for one property.  This would have an overbearing effect on the residents.  Local people face a reduction in their quality of life and property values due to significant visual impact and/or noise.

 

The developer gives assurances that the permitted noise levels will be met but adhering to these levels does not guarantee that local people won’t suffer noise problems.  Guidance (ETSU-R-97) was written in 1996 at a time when turbines were half the height planned for Chapman’s Howe and is considered by many acousticians to be outdated and unfit for purpose.

 

If Barcloy Hill is approved, the applicant requests that the permitted noise levels be raised from 35 dB during the daytime to 37.5dB.  This should not be allowed – it is evident that trying to cram too many turbines in-between properties is an identied problem so why should local residents suffer higher noise levels?

 

Emerging evidence indicates that wind turbines can impact indirectly on health due to stress and annoyance, which are known to cause problems such as disrupted sleep, tinnitus, loss of concentration and cardiovascular problems.

 

In view of this, the ‘Precautionary Principle’ should be invoked and setback distances of 2km enforced between properties and turbines.

 

 

Other issues

 

Excessive amounts of construction traffic and abnormal loads will travel through Gelston and along minor roads over a six month period.  Local property owners are concerned about structural damage heavy traffic could cause to their roadside dwellings

 

The site supports a variety of wildlife which could suffer through loss of foraging/disturbance of habitat and many wintering birds pass through the site on their way to and from feeding grounds.  The numbers of over-wintering birds quoted are low compared to the numbers witnessed by locals in the area.  One of the problems with the bird surveys is that the bird surveyors do not attain a true picture of the large numbers of over-wintering birds that fly over the site on days when they are not present.

 

There will be a significant adverse impact on the setting of archaeological features such as Kirkbride Settlement and Dungarry Fort.

 

The Chapman's Howe Wind Farm would in effect be adjacent to the Barcloy Hill 5 x 115 metre wind turbine development for which the application has been submitted but not yet decided.  If Barcloy were consented, this development would have a cumulative negative impact due to the differing heights of turbines and rotational speeds of the blades which would make for a confusing picture and would ‘clutter’ the locality.  The impact on the landscape character would be significant and adverse and the requested increase in permitted noise levels to 37.5dB should not be allowed for what in effect would be an 8 turbine wind farm.

 

The applicant admits in their application that this development will bring little economic benefit to the area, however, it will have long term economic consequences for households as the ‘subsidies’ gained by the development are levied via consumers’ electricity bills for the 25-year operational life of the wind farm.

 

This proposal breaches SPP 127, 187 and local policies S21, E3, E6, GP7, GP24, D36 and the IPP

 

I do not believe the benefits of this development will outweigh the negative impacts and urge you you refuse this application.

 

Yours faithfully,

 

[Name & Signature]

 

 

Chapman's Howe plans submitted

 

A proposal for 3 x 100m turbines on land at Hartburn Farm just off the Gelston to Kirkcudbright road has been lodged with the council this week.

 

The application is not open for comment yet and we will send further information and reasons for objection once we have had time to digest the submitted Environmental Statement!

 

We know already that the site is located in an area that the Dumfries and Galloway Wind Farm Capacity Study identifies as unsuitable for turbines of this height.  The developers are aware of this but think they can force the plans through anyway!

 

So much for community consultation.

 

 

Knockendurrick (Irelandton)

 

Banks Renewables have submitted a Pre-Application Notice for Knockendurrick which means the full planning application cannot be presented until after 12 weeks from that date.  The earliest date the proposal can be handed in is the 2nd September 2013

 

 

Local News

 

High Barcaple 1 x 62m – NATS have withdrawn their objection

 

Baerlochan – scoping opinion submitted for a 78m turbine (13/E/2/0022)

 

Upper Porterbelly Farm near Kirkgunzeon (44.9m) and Guffogland near Dalbeattie (55m) have submitted appeals to the Scottish Government due to non-determination by the council

 

Save Loch Urr group have decided to expand their activities and fight the intended applications for wind farms at Mochrum Fell and Collieston Hil. They also have a provisional date for a picnic on the 10th August to promote their cause – more details as we get them and you can keep up to date at their website:   http://www.savelochurr.com/

 

 

Summary of Scoping Applications

 

13/E/2/0022   Baerlochan   1 x 78m

 

13/E/2/0023   Glentoo Farm CD   2 x 42m

 

13/E/3/0011   Wether Hill ext   12 x 100m

 

 

Summary of Planning Applications

 

13/P/2/0133   Ingleston Lodge Gelston   1 x 36m  comments close 5pm Thursday 4th July

 

13/P/2/0157   Little Sypland   50m met mast

 

13/P/2/0189   Chapman's Howe   3 x 100m

 

Longburn wind farm Carsphairn

 

Sandy Knowe – submitted directly to the Scottish Government as it is over 50MW

 

 

After three and a half years fighting this proposal, TW312 are delighted to announce that the Reporter appointed by the Scottish Government has refused the appeal.

 

Landscape visual impact and the overbearing impact on 2 properties are citied

 

Click here to read report

 

Scroll down to 5th June – Appeal decision document

 

The Reporter has recognised the importance of the Interim Planning Policy (IPP) and the Dumfries and Galloway Landscape Capacity Study (DGWLCS) which contains the details of landscape character types and their ability to accommodate a size of turbine in a particular location.

 

 

 

Some quotes from the report:-

 

I agree with the conclusions of the council’s landscape capacity study (DGWLCS) that there would be significant adverse effects from large turbines occurring across a wide range of sensitivities within the drumlin pastures and coastal granite uplands. From the evidence of my site inspection, I also agree with the advice of Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) that the drumlin pastures and coastal uplands have a higher sensitivity than ‘medium’ to large (typology) turbines as suggested in the appellant’s Environmental Statement.

 

I find the whole landscape envelope, running north-east to south-west from Castle Douglas to Kirkcudbright and incorporating small settlements and their agricultural hinterlands, would be unable to accommodate 6 wind turbines of the size and scale proposed by the appellant.  I consider the proposed turbines, 130 metres in height to blade tip, would the area’s small scale land use pattern and gentle rounded topography.

 

I find that the turbines would be visually dominant when viewed from the north against the rising backdrop of the granite uplands (Screel, Bengairn, Barcloy) and the jagged hill tops beyond. The peaks and hills are also important recreational assets and I consider their attractiveness would be diminished by the presence of a cluster of large turbines in such close proximity.

 

In summary, for the reasons set out in paragraphs 9 to 15 above, I consider that the proposal does not accord with the requirements of structure plan policies S21 and E3 and interim planning policy (IPP) WEP3 because it would result in a significant adverse impact on the character, appearance and visual amenity of the local landscape and area. The turbines would also have a significant adverse visual impact on occupiers of the two closest residential properties.

 

A huge thank you to everyone who has supported us over this time and/or has submitted objections

OPEN FOR COMMENT

 

13/P/2/0081   Upper Porterbelly Farm, Kirkgunzeon   ! x 45m

Until 5pm Thursday 2nd May 2013

 

Scoping Opinions

 

13/E/2/0010   MARNHOUL FARM CD 16 x 146.5m

 

13/E/3/0004   Stroanshalloch, Moniaive   16 x 146.6m

13/E/3/0006   Spango (Community Windpower)   14 x 135m

13/E/3/0007   Bush of Killylour, Dumfries   1 x 45m

 

Withdrawn

 

13/P/2/0055   Marnhoul met mast 80m

due to proximity of Glenswinton air strip

 

Public exhibition

 

REG Windpower are holding 2 public exhibitions for the Chapman's Howe Wind Farm a:-

 

Gelston Village Hall Friday 26th April 1 – 7.30pm

Kirkcudbright Town Hall Sat 28th April 10 – 3pm

Mayfield

 

Community Windpower Ltd has submitted an appeal to the Scottish Government against the refusal of their Mayfield application by the council.

 

An advert appeared in the Galloway News on Thursday 4th April notifying objectors that they have 14 days from this date to submit further comments on this application if they so wish.

 

Normally the council have to send individual letters to everyone who commented but due to the numbers involved it was agreed by the Scottish Government that Dumfries and Galloway council could instead place an advert in the local paper.  If you know someone who did comment and may like to add further comments please let them know they have until the 18th April 2013 to send their email to :-

 

Marie.Buchanan@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

 

Or write to:-

 

The Scottish Government

Directorate for Planning and Environmental Appeals

4 The Courtyard

Callendar Business Park

Callendar Road

Falkirk

FK1 1XR

 

 

Documents can be viewed on the council’s eplanning website or at

 

http://www.dpea.scotland.gov.uk

 

(use simple search facility and enter case number for Mayfield which is PPA-170-2062)

 

 

Community Windpower’s main arguments against refusal

 

 

The Mayfield application conforms to guidance in the Wind Energy Diagram Technical Paper No5 (1999) and (they try to argue!) the Interim Planning Policy (IPP).

 

The current Supplementary Guidance on Wind Energy Development (the IPP) is not a material consideration as it has been incorporated into the draft Local Development Plan which has just been out for public consultation.

 

Scottish Natural Heritage has not objected to the application and the implication is therefore they support it!  Anyone who has read SNH’s response can be left in no doubt this couldn’t be further from the truth.  SNH are unable to object to applications unless the proposal impacts on national grounds.

 

The proposed wind farm would make a ‘small but valuable’ contribution towards the Scottish and UK renewable energy targets

 

IF ANYONE WOULD LIKE FURTHER EVIDENCE TO SUBMIT PLEASE EMAIL tw312@stringbag.net FOR MORE INFORMATION

 

 

Barcloy Hill Wind Farm

 

RES UK has applied to the council for an extension to the date for determination.  This six week agreement will mean the determination date is now 2nd June 2013.

 

 

Chapman’s Howe

 

REG Windpower has announced further public exhibitions for the Chapman’s Howe project which has been reduced from 4 x 107m turbines to 3 x 100m (still contrary to local policies!).

 

Gelston Village Hall   1 – 7.30 pm   Friday 26th April

KBT Town Hall   10 – 3 pm   Saturday 27th April

A further 117 wind turbines and monitoring masts could be on the cards for Galloway if a current wave of applications is passed.

 

The most prominent of these will be 11 turbines at a maximum height of 100m planned for land near the A75 at Shennanton, Kirkcowan, which one council source claimed would leave motorists “practically driving through them”.

 

At next Wednesday’s planning meeting, the council will also be faced with applications for masts at Knockendurrick Hill, Gatehouse, which could result in 10 turbines from Banks Renewables; a mast at Mochrum Fell , Corsock, with a view to 15 turbines from 
Falck Renewables (which has prompted 233 objections), and E.ON has applied for a mast at Benbrack, Carsphairn, with the possibility of erecting 27 turbines.

 

Click here to read more

Community Windpower Ltd have submitted an appeal to the council's refusal of the Mayfield wind farm.

 

The application will be allocated to a Reporter from the Scottish Government who will decide how the appeal will be heard.  This could be through an oral hearing or via written evidence.

 

Anyone who commented on the application should be contacted and will be able to submit further comment.

 

Community Windpower's decision to appeal this application demonstrates complete disdain for our local policies and communities. This application is CLEARLY against the Interim Planning Policy and the Landscape Capacity Study.

 

Sadly their attitude is not unique as RES UK showed at the Kirkcudbright Community Council meeting last week.  When asked by a community councillor how they expected the Barcloy hill wind farm to be approved as it was against local policy, the new project manager replied that they were aware it was against local policies but they hoped to push it through anyway.

 

So much for community consultation and local democracy!

BARCLOY HILL

 

RES announced a new project manager for the Barcloy Hill Wind Farm at the Kirkcudbright Community Council meeting last week.  When asked how the scheme conformed to local policy they admitted it didin't but said they hoped it would be pushed through anyway!

 

RES stated that the decision date for Barcloy was the 24th April (unless RES and the council agree an extension) and there is a Planning Application Committee meeting due that day.  We will let you know as soon as we hear if Barcloy is on the agenda.

 

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) are not able to object to wind farms anymore but have submitted clear guidance that the Barcloy turbines are too big for the landscape and will have significant adverse impacts on the area.

 

MAYFIELD

 

Community Windpower Ltd have until the 18th March to appeal against the councils refusal of the Mayfield application.  It could take a few days for the appeal to appear on the Scottish Government website but we should know by the end of next week.

 

IRELANDTON (KNOCKENDURRICK)

 

Banks Renewables will be holding 3 public exhibitions on the Knockendurrick proposal for 10 x 132m turbines

 

Twynholm Village Hall 18th March 3 -7pm

Kirkcudbright Town Hall 19th March  3 – 7pm

Gatehouse Community Centre 21st March 3 – 7pm

 

COLLIESTON HILL

 

The application for an 80m mast has been appealed to the Scottish government due to non-determination within the time frame allowed.  There is a scoping application in for the same site for 18 x 141.4m turbines.

 

OPEN FOR COMMENT (until 28/03/13)

 

13/P/2/0044   High Barcaple   1 x 62m

13/P/2/0050   Larg Farm Creetown 1 X 45.5m

 

PLANNING APPLICATIONS

 

13/P/2/0055   Marnhoul Wood ( E271234, N576145) 1 X 80m Met Mast (Infiergy)

13/P/2/0056   Smittons   E262318, N593717) 1 X 80m Met Mast (Infiergy)

13/P/1/0042   Kirwaugh Farm Wigtown 2 X 28.673m turbines

13/P/1/0105   North Park Farm Kirkcolm 1 X 46.5m turbines

 

SCOPING APPLICATIONS

 

13/E/1/0021   Awkirk Farm Ardwell 1 X 27m turbine

13/E/1/0022   Baltersan Farm Newton Stewart 1 X 45m

13/E/1/0023   Reiffer Park Sorbie Newton Stewart 1 X 67m

 

13/N/1/0002 Shennanton Wind Farm, Kirkcowan 11 X 100m turbines dated 07/03/2013 (submitted by PNE Wind)

13/N/1/0003 Larbrax Wind Farm Nr Stranraer 8 X 125m turbines dated 07/03/2013 (Submitted by PNE Wind)

 

The Shetlands are threatened with a 103 turbine wind farm in the heart of the Shetlands – constructed on a site of 32,000 acres. It is a mind boggling development. What is particularly distressing is that there were 2722 objections from individuals and objections from the John Muir Trust, RSPB and the government's own agency and statutory consultee Scottish Natural Heritage.

 

Yet Energy Minister Fergus Ewing still thought it appropriate to approve this wind farm.

 

Sustainable Shetland have decided to challenge this decision through the courts and have launched a judicial review.

 

They need funds – it's as simple as that. They have been granted a protective costs order and will only be liable for £5000 of costs. They still have to fund their own experts and legal fees.

 

If you would like to make a donation to their fighting fund please follow the links on

 

http://www.sustainableshetland.org/index.htm

 

Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/TurbineWatch312?ref=hl#!/groups/111070719185/?fref=ts

 

 

Reasons for objection – click here

 

Open for comments until Thursday 14th February 2013

Credit:     Simon Johnson     Scottish Political Editor     The Telegraph     (13/01/13)

 

"Primary pupils in North Ayrshire were handed plans, seemingly written by a developer, encouraging their parents to back a planning application for an extension to a wind farm in the area.

 

The letter contained a section for parents’ signatures at the bottom and was addressed to the local council’s planning department.

 

Critics yesterday expressed their anger at both the developer and SNP-run North Ayrshire council for allowing wind farm “propaganda” in the classroom but the local authority claimed the letters were “directly relevant” to the pupils’ school work."

 

And the developer is…….. none other than our old friends Community Windpower Ltd!

 

Clcik here to read more

 

10 x 136m turbines planned for Irelandton just outside Twynholm

 

Click here to read more

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