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Wind meter must be taken down

Councillors yesterday ordered that a 164ft wind meter be taken down after refusing to extend planning permission, which expires today.

The anemometer at Cowie Hill, Alvah, near Banff, was installed to test wind conditions ahead of the installation of a number of wind turbines.

Developers want to keep the device on site for another 12 months although plans have already been passed for a turbine.

Plans for a 261ft turbine at Cowie Hill were passed by councillors at a meeting of the area committee on December 18 last year – despite being recommended for refusal by planners.

A total of 22 objections had been lodged to the application by energy consultants E-Gen.

In one letter sent to the council, Kathleen McHardy, of Cornhill, wrote: “The applicant is applying for an extension because he has managed to get planning permission for a 79.6m turbine which was granted against planning recommendations.

“This shows my fears were well-founded and I am concerned the applicant plans to apply for more turbines at this site.”

In another objection, Gordon Butterfield, of Banff, wrote: “I have great concerns that the developer means to apply for more turbines on this elevated site in this already far too overcrowded turbine landscape.”

At a meeting of the Banff and Buchan area committee at Banff yesterday, councillors were unanimous in their decision despite an extension of the planning permission being recommended by planners.

Banff and District councillor Michael Roy said: “I fail to see the need for this to remain as surely it should have done its job.”