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Highland Council defer decision on Allt Duine Wind Farm

Highland councillors have deferred making any comment on plans to construct a 31-turbine wind farm near the Cairngorms National Park.

The Scottish government has consulted Highland Council on RWE Innogy’s proposal for a site near Kincraig.

Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey planning applications committee will make a site visit before taking a view on the project.

The Allt Duine Wind Farm could generate enough power for 43,000 homes.

Earlier, about 25 objectors to the project held a demonstration outside the council’s headquarters in Inverness.

The Mountaineering Council of Scotland has said landscape was being sacrificed to the interests of firms and landowners.

But the firm behind the plans said efforts would be made to minimise its visual impact.

Development manager Jenny Gascoigne told BBC Radio Scotland that measures have been put into the plan to reduce the farm’s visual impact.

The project has been reduced from 34 to 31 turbines, which will have a maximum height to blade tip of 125m (410ft).

At three locations the height to blade tip has been restricted to 110m (360ft) so turbines cannot be seen from viewpoints in the area, the company said.

Ms Gascoigne said: “It is true to say that the turbines, whilst they are outside of the park, they are relatively close to the park boundary.

“What is very important to realise is the way that the scheme has been purposely designed. We are using the natural land forms to actually shield the turbines.”

The Scottish government has consulted Highland Council on the Allt Duine Wind Farm as part of its consideration of the plan.

Council officers recommended the local authority does not oppose the scheme.