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Golfers to decide position on windfarm off Aberdeen coast

Members of one of the world’s most historic golf courses are to decide whether the club objects to plans for a windfarm off the coast of Aberdeen.

The European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre is a £150million joint venture by utility company Vattenfall, engineering firm Technip and Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group.

But the 11 turbines, planned for the stretch between Balmedie and Blackdog in Aberdeenshire, would be visible from the Menie Estate, where Donald Trump has built his links.

The billionaire has now become the renewable energy project’s most vociferous opponent, and has been urging neighbouring golf clubs to join him in fighting the plans.

Royal Aberdeen has now confirmed the club is consulting its members on whether it should object.

Club director Ronnie Macaskill said: “We are going to ask members what they feel and get some feedback.”

“Some members have objected personally, but as a club we need to get a collective view.”

He said a decision was likely to be made in January.

Royal Aberdeen was founded in 1780 and is the sixth-oldest golf club in the world. This year it hosted the Walker Cup tournament, and in the past has hosted the Senior British Open.

However, Newburgh Golf Club, north of the Trump development, will not be objecting.

Spokesman Dave Bingham said: “It does not affect us.”

Mr Trump has previously told First Minister Alex Salmond the turbines are “disastrous and environmentally irresponsible”.

He warned the SNP leader that he may reconsider the rest of the resort – a luxury £250million hotel, 950 holiday homes and 500 houses – if the project goes ahead.

He has since written to Energy Minister Fergus Ewing formally requesting that a hearing be held in public.

The letter, sent by Ann Faulds, a partner at legal firm Dundas and Wilson, states: “A public inquiry into the proposed development is necessary to explore all material considerations and to ensure a proper evidential base to inform the Scottish ministers’ determination of the application.

“In particular the potential economic impact of the proposed development on my client’s development, and by extension the regional and Scottish economy, has not been addressed in the environmental statement submitted in respect of the application.”