Glenauchie turbine: permission refused

Many of you who made representations to South Ayrshire will already know that permission has been refused for a proposed single 70m turbine at Glenauchie.

Reasons for the decision can be found in the following documents: a brief summary in the Decision Notice, and a longer discussion, including consideration of the representations made, in the Regulatory Panel Report. These documents (along with all the representations) are also available  at South Ayrshire’s online planning site.

Dersalloch – thanks for your objections!

The deadline for objections to Dersalloch wind farm has now passed. Despite the short notice, we made our feelings known! We will let you know the details (how many objections – and so on – as soon as we know them).

To give everyone a day off from wind farms, I am posting a picture of the Garden of Eden, possibly the last place where there definitely weren’t any. It seems to me to bear a remarkable resemblance to the upper Girvan valley near Straiton (with added camels).



Dersalloch Images

Better late than never. It took some time to track down some digital images of the Dersalloch viewpoints. Here are some PDFs of the original “official” views from the Scottish Power Renewables Environmental Assessment (as of 2012), and below, there are some extra jpgs of views which weren’t included but should have been. The view over Loch Doon from the A713 was only supplied by SPR as a wireframe.

Viewpoint 08 Gass 6.17
Viewpoint 08 NE Gass 6.17
Viewpoint 07 Patna 6.16
Viewpoint 03 Craigengillan 6.12
Viewpoint 09 Blairquhan 6.18
Viewpoint 12 Tairlaw Toll 6.21
Viewpont 04 Dalcairney Path 6.13
Viewpoint 02 Loch Doon 6.11


Note on the Alitzourie viewpoint: (not used by SPR) – from the Kirkmichael to Straiton Road – where it emerges from trees just above Altizourie and from where you see the whole of the Monument Hill, the upper Girvan valley, Bennan Hill, and the woods and fields of the Blairquhan estate, with Blairquhan castle also visible through the trees.

Note on the Bennan Hill viewpoint: (not used by SPR) The view from Bennan hill has been admired for centuries. In 1845, the minister at Straiton wrote; “Craigengower, or hill of the goats, rises immediately behind the manse, to the height of 1300 feet. Bennan hill, half a mile south of the village, on which a small obelisk was built about fifty years ago is about 1150 feet high. From both these hills, there are fine views of Ayrshire, the Firth of Clyde, Arran, and part of the coast of Ireland.” [from Second Statistical Account of Scotland 1845, The Rev Robert Paton, Minister, Parish of Straiton.]

Note on the wireframe: shows the turbines that would be visible from the Scottish Dark Sky Observatory.

Note on the uncaptioned jpgs taken from deep in the Galloway Forest (the Loch Enoch hills): these are from Jez Turner, who writes : “Have you realised that Big Hill of Glenmount is visible from the sylvan White Lochan of Drighorn, deep in Galloway Forest Park between Curleywee and Millfore?” And so of course, would the turbines of Dersalloch and Glenmount wind farms.

Apologies for the late posting. A lot of work is going on in a very short time! Don’t forget the deadline of the 28th, and feel free to send the link to this page to concerned friends and relatives!

Dersalloch News

The site of Dersalloch
The photo (taken from Bennan Hill) shows the site where SPR plan to put their 23 giant turbines: in the front, the Doonans, behind, Trostan Hill, Big Hill of the Baing, and snow-covered in the distance is Cairnsmore of Carsphairn. This beautiful hill country is on the borders of the Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park, and the turbines will be visible from the Scottish Dark Sky Observatory (not to mention Ayr and Troon!). Don’t let them do it!

The good news is that South Ayrshire is maintaining their objection, so it should go to a Public Inquiry. Make sure your opinion is heard too, before the 28th March. If you haven’t already done so, you can click here to object.

Loch Doon and the Dark Sky Park (no turbines)

All photos are copyright of their respective authors. See the originals and another 250 or so striking images of Loch Doon, Night Skies above the Dark Sky Park, Dalcairney Falls, on Flickriver: click here. Glenmount and Dersalloch wind farms are just two of the wind farms which threaten these landscapes and these night skies.

Several thousand object to Glenmount

We don’t know yet exactly how many, but we think that once again, several thousand people have voiced their concerns about a wind farm sited inappropriately in a beautiful and much valued location. If you made an objection: thank you for your help. We will let you know when we have some definite figures!

In a little while we will also be putting copies of our “official” Save Straiton for Scotland objections up on line.

Meanwhile, the work never stops … Believe it or not, there is now an opportunity to object to Dersalloch wind farm – the deadline is 28th March. Another post will follow very shortly, and please, please, add your voices to object to this blight on the Straiton Hills.

Dersalloch wind farm: object before 28th March

Yes, there is still an opportunity to object to Dersalloch. First proposed in 2005, objected to by South Ayrshire, the plans remain before the Scottish Government: now you have a final (?) opportunity to air your views.

Representations on an “Addendum” have been invited. The addendum concerns the impact of the Dersalloch wind farm on the Dark Sky Park and the Scottish Dark Sky Observatory. A lot of the discussion is about whether infra-red lights on the turbines will interfere with astronomical observations (the expert advice seems to be that they probably won’t). HOWEVER, there are still important technical issues to be resolved (will air turbulence cause poor visibility? If that sounds crazy – click on the thumbnail Turbulence-Woan-report-phototo see a photo of what could happen… will the shadow of the turbines occlude the night sky?) and the bigger issue of the effect of Dersalloch wind farm on Dark Sky tourism and indeed tourism in general is also up for discussion: we certainly feel that Dersalloch would be a disaster for both Dark Sky tourism for the Observatory, and for tourism to the Galloway Forest in general.

Representations on the Dark Sky issues will be considered by the Reporter (who then advises Ministers). But, as well as commenting on these specific issues, you can add any comments you wish on the whole Dersalloch proposal – and these will be considered by Scottish Ministers.

We have prepared a “how to object page” – click here to be redirected.

Have a look at what is under threat: not just Straiton and Blairquhan, but the Dark Sky Park, and the landscapes around Loch Doon: just click here or on the thumbnail to see some striking images of just how beautiful and worth-protecting this area is.LochDoonStacked-M-Ferrier

Before you object, by all means have a look at the Non-Technical summary (includes maps) of 2012 and the technical reports which form “Addendum III”. Download them here:

1. Dersalloch Non-technical summary

2. ScottishPower Renewables AEI report

3. Report by Professor Woan


If you want to see the original press advertisement in the Edinburgh Gazette asking for public representations, click here.

The Scottish Government’s page on Dersalloch has some other relevant documentation.

Just to remind you…

The Dersalloch wind farm would consist of 23 turbines: seven at 115m and sixteen at 125m to blade tip.

The site is Dersalloch Hill, between Straiton and Dalmellington: it would sit on the high ground behind and beyond the Monument – just to the left of the monument as you look at it from Maybole. The wind farm would be parallel to the Straiton-Dalmellington B741, and dominate the whole of that road.

The nearest turbine to Straiton is 2.3km away (measured to the War memorial) and 2.2km (measured to the primary school). Click on the map below to see the detail…