WilloWind hit back over windfarm KO
Credit: Carrick Herald | 19 Mar 2015 | www.carrickherald.com ~~
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An energy company is refusing to accept defeat on a Straiton windfarm application.
Willowind Energy Ltd say they are looking forward to a Scottish Government decision on the Linfairn proposals.
That’s after South Ayrshire Council’s planning bosses knocked back plans for a massive windfarm last week.
Seventeen 415ft turbines which can be seen from Maybole and Crosshill are planned for the site on farmland to the south of Straiton.
Despite the objection, plans will now go to Holyrood for a final decision.
Suki Atwal, Director of WilloWind said: “The proposed development will be capable of providing enough electricity each year for around 28,570 average domestic UK households, while also reducing CO2 emissions by over 1.3m tonnes compared to a grid mix form of electricity generation over the 25 year lifetime of the development.
“In addition our community benefit package of £272,000 per annum will ensure that the local communities in North Carrick can invest in their future.
“Our proposals also represent a capital investment well in excess of £50m that will provide a much needed boost to the North Carrick and South Ayrshire economy.”
Mr Atwal also claimed that North Carrick residents are supporting the proposals.
That comes despite a campaign called Save Straiton for Scotland being set up to oppose windfarm developments.
Mr Atwal said that their campaign had been “vociferous”, adding: “In recent months we have seen rising support for our proposals.
“We have been positively engaging with local communities and wider stakeholders throughout the process and continue to do so, having held a stakeholder briefing at Ayrshire College last week.
“It is clear to us that there is a rising level of support for our project, as local communities and companies in particular, recognise the opportunities that Linfairn Wind Farm will create for both North Carrick and South Ayrshire.”
But Lala Burchall-Nolan, Chair of Save Straiton for Scotland, accused WilloWind of disrespecting South Ayrshire Council.
She added: “Given the remit of Scottish National Heritage to protect the Scottish Countryside, particularly our Wild Land, I’m hopeful that SNH will add their voice to the thousands who have spoken against this proposal.
“The Developer is quite right that we have been ‘vociferous’ in our campaign.
“As a community of some 300 souls standing up to a Swiss-backed investment firm with very deep pockets, we have had to be.
“The ‘rising support’ for the development has resulted in fewer than 200 letters of support, set against more than 4,300 letters of objection. The numbers speak for themselves and speak volumes.
“Save Straiton for Scotland applaud the Council’s decision. This proposal does not comply with our Local Development Plan. It is completely inappropriate in the Upper Girvan Pastoral Valley.”
But Valerie Russell, Chief Executive of Ayrshire Chamber of Commerce: “Ayrshire Chamber would like to commend WilloWind on their engagement to date, and on the commitment they have shown to ensuring that their development brings real benefit to the local area.
“Linfairn Wind Farm could represent a great opportunity to help local companies to grow and expand which can only help the local economy.”
Last week, Councillors said that Linfairn was not the right area for a windfarm before voting unanimously to object to the proposals.
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