Plans for a £90 million windfarm in the Glenkens are hanging in the balance.
Burcote Wind are “considering their options” for the 24-turbine proposals at Benshinnie near Parton after the Scottish Government ruled their plan for a wind measuring mast on the site was dangerously close to an airstrip. The Fife-based company had appealed to Holyrood earlier this year after councillors rejected their application, even though it had been recommended for approval by planners.
But Scottish Government reporter William Patterson went along with the decision of councillors and ruled the mast could not be approved due to safety issues with a nearby airstrip at Glenswinton.
Burcote Wind chairman Graham Brown said: “We are clearly disappointed that the DPEA has refused permission for the met mast to measure wind conditions at the Benshinnie site.
“In his assessment, the reporter acknowledged that the application for the met mast had been recommended for approval by Dumfries and Galloway Council’s planning department, after being judged to comply with policies around the effect of development on the landscape.
“Safety in relation to light aircraft taking off and landing from the nearby Glenswinton airstrip was raised as the main determining factor for refusal.
“We believe it is significant that the Glenswinton airstrip is an unauthorised development which has never received planning permission.
“Nevertheless, Burcote Wind respects the decision of the reporter. We will review all of our options before deciding on our future course of action.”
Peter Jackson, who runs the airstrip at Glenswinton, had applied to the council for planning permission to use it for non-farm aviation business for more than 28 days a year.
However, he had decided to withdraw that application after an error by planners.
Responding to the decision Mr Jackson said: “I am pleased the reporter has upheld the very wise decision of the local planning committee.”
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