Mormond Hill windfarm plans fail to win backing

Mormond HIll near Strichen
Mormond HIll near Strichen

Plans for a huge windfarm development at Mormond Hill near Strichen, have been refused by Banff and Buchan councillors.

The decision was made at the recent meeting of Banff and Buchan Area Committee.

Muirden Energy of Turriff had submitted a planning application for the windfarm comprising 12 100m high turbines , each of 2.4MW power, on top of the central and north part of Mormond Hill.

The development had previously been refused on three grounds: it would have an adverse effect on the visual amenity; it would have an adverse effect on archaeological sites; and, it would have an adverse effect on air safety, due to radar interference.

All councillors who spoke agreed with the planning officer, and the proposal was rejected.

Councillor Charles Buchan said: “Wind energy is very important for Scotland. However this need must be balanced by other factors, including the retention of special scenery.

“Mormond Hill is very special. Although it is only about 800 feet high, it is very prominent as it is an isolated area of high ground surrounded by undulating fairly flat ground.

“The proposed development would have a huge detrimental effect on the views of the hill.

“These huge turbines, based at such a height would be visible by thousands of people as far as 30 km away. The turbines would also interfere with our radar system which ensures air safety.

“I’m very glad that the Banff and Buchan Area Committee turned down the application,” he added.