Appeal launched against Kirkdale Hill mast decision

An appeal has gone into the Scottish Government to reverse a decision made by Dumfries and Galloway Counil after the authority refused a wind monitoring mast on land at Kirkdale Hill.

The mast was a precursor to the planned seven-turbine California Wind Park on the site which would have been visible from as far away as Wigtown and which caused uproar across the area.

The council believed the land was too improtant, having been designated a Regional Scenic Area, and refused the application by Ecotricity (Next Generation Ltd) in August.

But now the plans are due before Scottish ministers who have the power to reverse the decision and grant the required permissions.

The local authority received 62 objections to the application.

And this week, Corilolis Energy Ltd, on behalf of Falck Renewables Wind Ltd, has announced substantial changes to its proposals for Mochrum Fell Wind Farm located 4.5km north east of Parton.

As part of its post-submission consultation with Dumfries and Galloway Council to mitigate the potential landscape and visual effects of the scheme, the developer has reduced the planned number of turbines from 11 to eight and cut the maximum height of one of the turbines from 126.5m to blade tip to 116.5m.

The three turbines that have been removed are those that had been planned closest to the summit of Mochrum Fell.

This means, says the company, the revised scheme will have substantially reduced visibility from residential dwellings to the south of the site and create a smaller and more compact scheme when viewed from Loch Ken.

Project Manager Lynne Sweeney from Coriolis Energy said: “Under the revised proposals, the three turbines identified by the council as being most intrusive on the landscape have been completely removed.

“Initial costings indicate that the site preparation and construction represents a capital investment of around £40 million which would help to create jobs locally and nationally.”