Ayrshire wind farm dismissed on visual impact

Plans for a 30-megawatt wind farm in Ayrshire have been refused permission after a reporter decided it would have an unacceptable landscape and amenity impact.

Wind energy: wind farm application blocked by reporter
Wind energy: wind farm application blocked by reporter

The Glenouther Renewable Energy Park proposal, comprising 12 turbines up to 126 metres high, was put forward by a subsidiary of energy firm Gamesa on a site near the village of Fenwick, on the A77 north of Kilmarnock. It was refused permission a year ago by East Ayrshire Council.

The appeal site lay within an area of search in which wind energy development was supported in principle in the Ayrshire Joint Structure Plan, approved in 2007. However, a subsequent addendum identified the site as lying within an "area of potential constraint".

Reporter Andrew Sikes found that the scheme’s environmental impact would conflict with the East Ayrshire Local Development Plan, only adopted by the authority last month.  

He found that the scheme, if allowed, would mean that wind turbines become a key feature of the landscape east of the M77 motorway, as they already are to the west. He concluded that the proposal would have a significant adverse effect on landscape character, visual and residential amenity.

A non-determination appeal involving plans to develop a data centre and a six-turbine wind farm at Blair Farm, immediately south of the Glenouther site, was dismissed last summer.

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