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Moffat windfarm consultation snub

Moffat residents claim they are being kept in the dark over proposals for a 36-turbine windfarm on top of the Devil’s Beeftub.

And they have raised concerns about a proposed new 15 km overhead power line over the town’s Golf Hill.

The Beeftub, an historic landmark used by the Border Reivers to hide stolen cattle, is one of the two main sources of the River Annan.

Wind Energy is proposing to build a windfarm on it under the name, Earlshaugh.

It is understood they plan to submit a planning application early in the new year.

In addition, ScottishPower is planning to construct the new overhead line to a new substation south of the town at Bearholm which will connect the proposed windfarm to the national grid.

At the weekend the company held a public information day in Tweedsmuir on their proposals but have not included Moffat residents in the consultation.

Dumfriesshire MP David Mundell has received a number of complaints from Annandale residents about the lack of consultation so far on both the windfarm and overhead power line.

He is no doubt that the construction of the site – which is just across the regional boundary in the Scottish Borders – will have a knock-on effect for residents in Upper Annandale.

Mr Mundell said: “I believe it will have more impact on the local area than other windfarm proposals within Dumfries and Galloway.

“It will significantly change the view of the Beeftub; construction traffic will use the A701; and the cable route is overhead rather than underground as in the case of ScottishPower’s own windfarm development at Harestanes, which will connect to the same new substation.”

Mr Mundell believes local people don’t know enough about either proposal and he wants officials from both companies to come to Moffat to fully outline their plans.

He added: “Not enough people know about either of these plans and the level of awareness needs to be raised. That is why I have asked both Wind Energy and ScottishPower to bring their presentations to Moffat and I have also asked Moffat Community Council to become involved in the process.

“This is a controversial windfarm proposal and cable route but, because the site at Earlshaugh is just across the regional boundary in the Borders, Tweedsmuir was selected as the venue for public displays.”

By Sharon Liptrott

Dumfries & Galloway Standard

16 November 2007