The Trump Organisation has hit back at claims that communities in North Carrick are in favour of wind turbine plans for Knoweside Hill.
George Sorial, an executive Vice President at the Trump Organisation believes that when plans are formally submitted, that local opposition will infact be against them.
Sorial said: “In terms of a response from what we’ve seen, we believe that the opposition to this locally will be strong when the plans are submitted.
“At the moment there are about 20 members of the community councils who are driving this project but we believe it will be a terrible mistake.
“The strategy is very short term and is only looking at the benefits that the developers have offered to them.
“I believe when the application is submitted you are going to see objections from the likes of Historic Scotland and we have also done our homework after the battles we continue to face in Aberdeen.
“The statements being made right now are very disingenuous and certain people are hiding behind a false sense of security.”
Sorial says that the organisation are in it for the “long-run” in terms of investment at Trump Turnberry and will fight any plans for wind turbines.
“I was out at Turnberry last week and stood at the lighthouse and just thought how terrible it would be to have these turbines at Knoweside Hill. It would be an awful legacy to leave to the community.
“We are in it for the long run at Turnberry and we are turning one of the most iconic properties in the world into an even better resort and we want to protect that investment and honour the history of Turnberry.
“We would be happy to meet with any of the community councils but right now we’d ask them to re-consider their strategy on these plans.”
However, Peter Mason, Chair of South Ayrshire Community Councils forum said: “The people that were surveyed, over 90% have stayed in Carrick all of their lives and that is who this is about.
“This is about the people who were born and bred in Carrick and know about their communities, not someboday that has been involved in the area for the last six months or so.
“And I find the fact that the Trump organisation feel they think the North Carrick communities don’t know what they found frankly insulting.
“When these plans are submitted, people may well change their mind on them which of course they are entitled to do, but right now the community that we surveyed in North Carrick are supporting these plans.
“I have no doubts that Mr Trump is going to bring employment and tourism to the area but can he promise to give £1m a year to the communities in terms of benefits.
“Surveys have shown that this area is the 8th worst deprived in the country and that’s only going to get worse.
“I just want to see the best for North Carrick and if that means getting involved in a windfarm that is going to be beneficial for the community, then I am for it just in the same way I’d be for any particular project if the benefits were being delivered to North Carrick.
“The community councils job is to be there on behalf of the communities and gain their opinions and express them back to the developers and we have done that.”
And in a separate development regarding Knoweside Hill, Susan Crosthwaite a leading anti-wind farm campaigner, who owns Cosses Country House in Ballantrae says developers have refused her request to show the communities the ‘true’ picture on the turbines.
Susan contacted the Gazette in response to the news that community councils have agreed to back a community windfarm partnership.
And Susan says that the public have not been properly consulted on the issue and that the developers ‘spin’ has only been circulated to some households in the area.
Susan wrote to the community councils on 27th September urging them to show a briefing document highlighting the effects of windfarms on rural communities at exhibitions which were due to be held but says this request was refused by those leading the development.
This lead Susan to claim that communities were being led blindfolded into the development which would see seven turbines built on the hillside at 132m to the tip of the turbines.
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