Community backed High Cumnock Wind Farm Appeal Rejected

by Holyrood Partnership

Monday, September 14th, 2015

banks renewables & SLC 25 (1)Despite extensive support within the local community, a formal appeal of a decision to reject plans to build an eight turbine Community Wind Farm at High Cumnock has not been successful.

The appeal had been backed by community councils from areas closest to the proposed site, keen to see the wind farm development allowed to deliver vital investment into what is a low-investment and higher than average unemployment area.[1].

Citing the strong community backing of its proposals, Hamilton-based developer Banks Renewables appealed the verdict in the hope of overturning what it saw as a deeply disappointing decision made late in 2014 by East Ayrshire Council.

At the time of the original refusal, planners noted that 477 letters of support were received for the application versus only eight letters of objection. Those supporting included two statutory community councils and many local businesses.

Colin Anderson, development director at Banks Renewables said: “This decision not to overturn the initial rejection is a real disappointment.

“We know for certain that it will be felt by the communities that had passionately backed High Cumnock for its potential to drive much needed investment into the area.”

High Cumnock Community Wind Farm, situated on land between Cumnock and New Cumnock, could have delivered green energy and an estimated £33 million shot-in-the-arm for the local economy over the 25 year lifetime of the project.

Through its ground breaking Connect2Renewables employability and training initiative, Banks was also hoping that High Cumnock Community Wind Farm would help around 100 local people into employment, training or further education – supported by Community Revenue Share funding.

In addition, a pre-planning agreement with local social enterprise NCAT, was reached in the hope that it could deliver on-the-job training for 60 young people over the first five years of the wind farm’s operation.

Colin added: “It seems the significant socio-economic benefits associated with the project and the weight given to those through planning policy have been interpreted in a different way to what we had hoped.

“Schemes such as NCAT can offer a precious lifeline for young people out of work and out of education.

“I just hope there will be a silver lining and that our exciting ongoing project to deliver the nearby Lethans Community Wind Farm will offer NCAT and the wider community the investment and opportunities that the region so desperately needs.”

For more information on the Lethans Community Wind Farm and how to support the project see: http://www.banksgroup.co.uk/lethans/

Banks Renewables is part of the Banks Group (www.banksgroup.co.uk), a family firm founded in 1976, which now employs more than 420 people in the renewable energy, property and mining sectors.

[1] House of Commons Library, Unemployment by constituency, March 2015, RESEARCH PAPER 15/15, 18 March 2015, pages 2 and 10, http://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/RP15-15/RP15-15.pdf

 

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Subject

Your Message

Holyrood Partnership

Award-winning Scottish public relations agency Holyrood PR in Edinburgh tells powerful stories for its diverse business clients. Here the PR experts celebrate the firm's own stories, photography and video successes.

View Holyrood's Profile

Related Posts

So how can we help?

Make an impact with PR photography

Make an impact with PR photography

Find out more

Every story can be told better with pictures. Discover our affordable, high-impact photo packages.

Benefit from business video

Benefit from business video

Action!

Find out how affordable video can bring a host of benefits to your business.

Meet the team

Meet the team

Our people

Meet the people who make Holyrood PR what it is, and get an insight into what makes them tick

If you have any comments or questions, please contact us.

GET ON THE PRIORITY LIST

Keep ahead of your oppositions by getting the free tips, insights and secrets we share for businesses. Straight to your inbox, every month.
Email address
First Name
Last Name