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Developer appeals against decision to reject Creag a’ Bhàird windfarm bid

A major windfarm bid that was thrown out by councillors has been resurrected.

Renewables specialist Force 9 Energy had its plans for a 13-turbine development near Aberfeldy rejected after a considerable backlash from locals, community councils and conservation groups.

Perth and Kinross Council received nearly 100 letters and emails calling for the multi-million-pound Creag a’ Bhàird plan to be scrapped.

Members of the development management committee unanimously ruled against the scheme – which is close to the massive SSE-operated Griffin windfarm – on the basis that it would have a detrimental impact on the surrounding area.

Now, Force 9 has appealed against the decision to the Scottish Government. In its letter to the Directorate for Planning and Environmental Appeals, a spokesman for the company argues that the scheme would not have a harmful impact on the area.

“The Creag a’ Bhàird windfarm is well contained within its landscape setting, clearly sitting within the Highland summits and plateaux landscape character type,” he said.

“It does not impinge unduly on any other landscape character type. It relates well to the existing Griffin windfarm and, as such, its visual impact closely follows that of the Griffin scheme, in that it is well contained within the landscape context.”

He said the turbines would be only visible from “discrete sections of road” closest to the site.

Opponents claimed that the turbines would be noisy, unsightly and could lead to a downturn in tourist numbers.

They pointed out that, when the much larger Griffin development was approved, four of its turbines were removed to limit its impact on the nearest households.

Addressing fellow members of the development management committee in March, Councillor John Kellas said: “We have fought hard to preserve this tourist route, which is a very attractive part of Perthshire.

“We need to continue to do so and stop it turning into an industrialised zone.”