Braes of the Carse Conservation Group
As was mentioned in the last newsletter the most controversial planning issue in this area at present is the proposed wind farm at Bandirran estate. The test mast has now been erected and at 80m high is highly visible on the skyline. Banks Renewables are now indicating that their planning application will be for 6 rather than 8 turbines due partly to concerns raised by local residents and also Dundee airport regarding aircraft safety. The intended height of the turbines is still however to be 135m and that would make them the highest in the country. It is hard to envisage the potential size of the turbines but those interested may want to take a look at the test mast and then try to visualise 6 much more solid looking structures more than one and a half times its height.
The developer is promising community benefit if planning permission is granted. We want to know if our members and the local community who would have to live with the turbines consider that the financial incentives being offered by Banks Renewables are worth the visual impact on the landscape and the other adverse consequences for the area. We think that, when considering the planning application, P & K Council need to strike the correct balance between the need for energy efficiency and renewable energy development and their duty to protect the quality of the landscape and natural environment. We would encourage Group members and the public in general to go along to the next public exhibition organised by Banks at Inchture Hotel on 3rd September from 3 to 7pm. We understand that there will be a 3D interactive model of the proposed wind farm at that event. However, in an attempt to give local people a balanced view of the pros and cons of the proposal a public meeting is planned at which Banks, Scotland Against Spin and other individuals with knowledge of the issues will be invited to speak. This is likely to be in late September and certainly prior to Banks submitting their planning application so that people can make their views known to P & K Council once they have possession of all the facts. We will try to advertise this meeting as widely as possible.
The PKC Conservation Officer has now confirmed that the remaining three large trees in the tree line on the outskirts of Westown are to have Tree Preservation Orders (TPO) placed on them due to perseverance from a local resident, BCCG and the Inchture Community Council. Westown does not have Conservation status and so there is no general protection for the trees in the village. Although ideally we would have liked the Council to recognise the importance of all of the trees in the village the fact that some of them are now protected has to be seen as a successful outcome.
We have just heard that we have been successful in our application for funds under the Tay Landscape Partnership (TLP) for our ambitious project called Tay to Braes Wildlife Ways. It is still early days and we don’t have any more details to report at this stage. More information should definitely be available in the next newsletter.
For further information about volunteering for any of our projects or joining BCCG please contact our Secretary, Marilyn Webb 01821 670374 or apply direct on our website www.BraesoftheCarse.org New members, whether living in the Braes area or not, are always welcome.