This proposal for 5 x 115m turbines was unanimously refused by council last month on landscape and visual impacts and residential impact grounds. However, comments by the developer, RES UK, which persistently imply that the lack of objection by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) to this development, somehow equates to no concerns, could not be left unchallenged.
Project manager John Appleton said: “RES is disappointed with the planning officer’s recommendation to refuse Barcloy Hill Wind Farm. The findings of the council’s landscape officer are at odds with the assessment RES has undertaken and more importantly Scottish Natural Heritage does not object to the project." (Daily Record 11 July)
“Whilst Dumfries and Galloway Council raised objections on the grounds of effects on landscape character and visual amenity, this position is not supported by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH)." (RES website)
According to the BBC website, RES UK, "expressed its disappointment at the decision saying that the objections due to the effect on the landscape had not been shared by Scottish Natural Heritage."
This is not an isolated incident but also happens with other developers across the whole of Scotland.
Turbine Watch 312, fully supported by GLARE, Save Loch Urr, South West Wind Farm Action Group, Say No to Arriequhillart and Biosphere and Dark Sky Park Protection Ltd, have written to Ian Ross, the new Chair of SNH asking that action is taken to rectify this situation.
We are lucky in Dumfries and Galloway that our councillors are fully aware of SNH's approach and know that they need to have regard to their detailed comments and not just their formal position. (Anyone reading SNH's detailed comments on the Barcloy proposal can be in no doubt as to their views!).
Unfortunately, this is not our experience with the wider public and developers can exploit this confusion to undermine the council officers' recommendation and to imply that objectors are mere NIMBYs.
Unless the position is clarified, the effect over time could be to erode confidence in the Council's policies, which we strongly support and which need to be consistently applied if we are to end the ongoing uncertainty and strife in this field.
We expect wind developers to operate in an open, honest and ethical way, sadly in this instance none of those qualities are apparent.
There is a good possibility that this proposal for 3 x 100m turbines adjacent to the Barcloy Hill site, could be decided at the PAC meeting on Wednesday 24th September. We will let you know once we have definite confirmation.
Knockendurrick (Gatehouse of Fleet)
Next in line for decision after Chapman's Howe! Again we will let you know when we have more information.
California wind park
Ecotricity's application for an 80m met mast at Kirkdale Hill is due to be decided at the PAC on the 27th August.
A scoping opinion has now been submitted for 7 x 126m turbines on Kirkdale Hill near Creetown. Whilst the mast is likely visible from Cairn Holy it would appear only one or possibly two of the turbines would be. However, this development would be highly visible from across Wigtownshire, sit within a Regional Scenic Area and impact on several sensitive archaeological sites. We shall be keeping a close eye on this proposal.
Several people have already contacted us to ask why this proposed development has been named 'California'. Apparently there is a derelict building on site with that name!
Community Windpower Ltd have requested an extension to the decision date until the 9th October.
Is open for comment until 28th August
8 x 100m turbines planned to the north of Portpatrick and Killantringan beach. This development would be situated near the early section of the Southern Upland Way, in a Regional Scenic Area and, with the North Rhins wind farm, would have significant cumulative impact.
If any of you know/visit the area please consider putting in an objection. For more information please visit the Save Killantringan Viewpoint Facebook page
A further 54 turbines have won approval from the Scottish Government to be added to the 152 already built
Balgrayhill (nr Lockerbie)
No. 4/E/4/0010 – scoping opinion submitted for 1 x 60.5m turbine
The Future of Galloway's Landscapes
See below for the details of an event that the Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland (APRS) are holding, with the help of the Galloway Preservation Society, in Gatehouse of Fleet on Saturday, 23rd August.
The purpose of the event is to give APRS members the chance to meet each other and discuss the future of the region's landscapes generally, taking account of all the pressures on it such as afforestation, more intensive farming, the pressure to relax controls over rural housing and other forms of renewables, as well as wind.
APRS want to show people just how attractive an area it is and how much care must be taken to ensure that it is properly safeguarded and looked after in the future. So long as attendees are happy to respect this overall objective, APRS would welcome as big a turnout as possible.
The Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland (APRS) in association with the Galloway Preservation Society (GPS) are holding an APRS Members Day: The Future of Galloway's Landscapes on Saturday 23rd August at the Mill on the Fleet, Gatehouse.
All APRS and GPS members, friends and family are most welcome to attend this APRS Members’ Day, which this summer comes to the Fleet Valley National Scenic Area in Galloway.
Faed Gallery, The Mill on the Fleet, High Street, Gatehouse of Fleet,
10.30 – 1.00 Speakers and discussion on The Future of Galloway Landscapes
1.00 – 2.00 Buffet lunch (see below for charges)
2.00 – 4.00 Site Visit to Knocktinkle NSA Viewpoint then to Dromore and Gatehouse Station, 5 miles north-west of Gatehouse, involving optional short walk (maximum 3 miles) on fairly level ground.
If you would like to attend please book in advance by Monday 18 August, to help us assess catering numbers. The cost is £10 per person, payable on the day, which includes coffee, lunch and a contribution towards room hire. To book or for any queries please email email@example.com or ring 0131 225 7012.
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