Plans for a six-turbine windfarm between Forfar and Dundee were given their first public exhibition in Angus on Monday.
Visitors to Inverarity Church hall viewed proposals for the 87-metre wind turbines at Govals Farm, seven kilometres south-west of Forfar.
The construction cost of the windfarm would be around £1.8 million with around half expected to be spent in the area.
The application by landowner David Cooper and consultants Green Cat angers some residents, who told The Courier about their concerns.
Retired army captain Andrew Vivers, whose family has had connections with neighbouring Arniefoul for a century and run a business there, believes the application goes against Angus Council’s ”duty of care” for several reasons.
He said the windfarm sits on an Ordnance Survey triangulation point (trig point), which would have been chosen for its 360 degree views towards Dundee, Montrose, Forfar, Kirriemuir and points between.
Mr Vivers said: ”The windfarm proposal gives scant regard to Angus Council’s push to increase tourism to the area. Such a visible windfarm can only have a detrimental effect on this policy.
”To quote from The Angus and Dundee Tourist Board website – ‘Uncover a different part of Scotland, where 2,000 years of magic, mystery and romance are interwoven across a land as unspoiled as it is rich in history, tradition and culture.’
”How can this be so if the scenery is marred by such a prominent windfarm?”
Although the application states consideration will be taken to minimise the turbines’ visual impact, it admits it will have a negative visual effect on four surrounding residences.
It assessed the impact on each of the 29 properties within a two kilometre radius and stated: ”There are predicted significant effects from the small settlements of Gateside to the north-east and Arniefoul to the west.
”Only four of these residential properties are likely to experience significant effects on the views from their garden or living areas within two kilometres.”
Of his business, Mr Vivers added: ”The proposed windfarm will, I am certain, severely damage the tranquil haven of Arniefoul and hence reduce our bookings, our income and our livelihood.”
Visitors to Kinnettles Castle would be able to see the turbines, as would motorists travelling on the A90, A94, A929 and A928. They would also be visible from the upper floors of Glamis Castle.
A spokesman for a group of concerned residents said they believed claims about a boost to the local economy are insubstantial, and that the impact to homes would be much greater than assessed by Green Cat.
The residents also believe the windfarm would have a much wider significant effect.
Their spokesman said: ”The Scottish Government wants windfarm developments to take place in the right places and has stressed they should only be built where the impacts have been found to be acceptable.
”This is clearly not the case with the Govals proposal.”
Mr Vivers added: ”Due to the grants available, there is currently a huge increase in applications for windfarms, with many more being prepared. If most of these are built, Scotland’s countryside will be little more than one huge windfarm.
”I sincerely hope this is not the aim of our Scottish Government but maybe it is time to have a ‘Nechtansmere’ campaign against these invaders of our countryside?
”The Govals windfarm proposal lists Arniefoul as being the property most affected by the windfarm. Neither Green Cat Renewables nor Mr Cooper has taken the time to discuss it with me, the owner of Arniefoul, nor have they directly notified me of their proposal.
”However, my main concern is for the detrimental visual and environmental impact this windfarm will have on much of Angus, this historic part of Scotland, and our livelihood.
”Angus Council has a duty of care to protect our environment and our heritage. Surely this is one case where they must do so, by refusing the application.”
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