Aug 19 2011 by Lisa Boyle, Ayrshire Post (main ed)
CONTROVERSIAL wind farm proposals are to be unveiled in Dalmellington.
The plans will be put to residents of the former mining village later this month.
It comes two years after the company behind the proposed wind farm withdrew plans after pressure from the community.
Infinis, a leading UK renewable energy generator, wants to erect a wind farm at Burnhead, part of the old Chalmerston open cast site two kilometres to the north of the Doon Valley village.
The new proposal significantly revises that submitted in 2009, with the number of turbines more than halved.
Infinis hopes to submit their planning application in September and is keen to discuss the proposal with the local community and other interested parties before it is finalised and submitted for consideration by East Ayrshire Council.
Julie Aitken, project manager, explained: “Since our first planning submission in 2009, Infinis has been in dialogue with East Ayrshire Council and other consultees.
“We believe that this new proposal for a smaller, less visually intrusive wind farm answers many of the concerns raised by the community in 2009 whilst still offering excellent opportunities for Dalmellington economically.
“We appreciate some people will have concerns about how Burnhead might look, and its potential impact on local tourism investments.
“However, this refreshed plan is very much born of the comments and concerns raised by the community in 2009.”
And the company hope that the people of Dalmellington will come out in force to see the proposal first hand.
Julie continued: “We really hope people will take the opportunity to come along to meet the team behind it, see for themselves how we have adapted the planned site to minimise visual impact, and speak directly to the people behind the project about how wind farms work, and how this one could contribute not just to Scotland’s future power provision, but also to the local economy for years to come.”
The Burnhead Wind Farm Public Exhibition is scheduled for Thursday, August 25 at Dalmellington Community Centre from 1pm to 8pm.
As well as an opportunity to meet the Infinis team and discuss their proposals, a specially commissioned video showing how Burnhead Wind Farm would appear from various viewpoints will also be shown.