People power has won the day on a controversial windfarm project … for now.
Objectors protested outside the council offices in Dumfries yesterday to make clear their opposition to plans for eight turbines at Mochrum Fell in the Glenkens.
And rally organiser Trevor Procter reckoned the demonstration “probably helped” as councillors voted to turn down the proposals, even though planners recommended for them approval.
Mr Procter said: “I’m relieved, now we just need to wait for an appeal.”
The project is the work of Falck Renewables and Coriolis Energy who had been looking to build seven, 126m-tall turbines and one at 116m.
After the meeting development manager for Coriolis Energy, Lynne Sweeney, said; “We’re disappointed in light of the report from the planning officer.”
Yesterday’s meeting was the second time protestors had gathered at the council offices. They did the same in April when councillors deferred a decision on the plans – which attracted almost 600 letters of objection – for a site visit.
At yesterday’s meeting Councillor Jane Maitland was critical of the proposals, calling them “unsuitable”.
She said: “There is, I think, an issue about the size of the turbines.
“The height of the turbines, tip wise, will exceed Mochrum Fell itself by up to 150 feet.
“I think the effect will be overpowering.
“Mochrum Fell is a significant local landmark. It is part of a nationwide network of trig points.”
And she believed the proposals were “too ambitious in scale for this particular site”.
She moved for the plans to be rejected on the basis they would have a “significant detrimental impact on the surrounding area”.
Councillor Tom McAughtrie backed her motion and there was no dissent from the rest of the planning applications committee.
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