It was great to see some new faces at our AGM and Afternoon Tea last Sunday. A friendly and relaxed affair.
Lala opened the meeting with an update. Since 2013 Save Straiton has fought six wind farms and defeated five with Linfairn the last to be withdrawn. Sadly Dersalloch, which started in 2007, was too far in the pipeline for us to influence the outcome. After a successful stint of over four years as Chair, Lala stood down. Glen Heggs took over as Chair but Lala intends to stay on the Committee.
Glen thanked Lala for leading Save Straiton in a focused and professional manner. We’re seen as a responsible organisation. So much so that we were invited to participate as an equal party in the Public Local Inquiry (PLI) for Kiers Hill. The Reporter recommended refusal and Lala, assisted by Whirly Marshall, played a major role. Tom Dowman presented Lala with a bouquet in appreciation for her hard work, vision and leadership skills.
Currently we are in the fortunate position of not having a wind farm or other unsuitable development to oppose. Despite this the Committee is recommending that Save Straiton be maintained for when and if any proposals arise needing our expertise. This could be in a couple of years as Scottish Power Renewables have erected a met mast at Linfern Loch which can only be with the intention of developing a wind farm in Forestry Commission ground. We’ll also be supporting the formation of a Galloway National Park and working with the Community Council to protect the Parish of Straiton and surrounding communities. It was therefore agreed that Save Straiton for Scotland continue with the following team:
Chair: Glen Heggs
Vice Chair: Bea Holden
Treasurer: Chris Johnson
Committee members: Sandy Millar, Tom Dowman, Lala Burchall Nolan
Chris Johnson gave an overview of the financial situation. We have £3,073 in the bank which will be kept as a fighting fund for the future. He suggested that those who had made regular contributions to Save Straiton might consider cancelling the arrangements in the meantime.
We would stress that it’s important to let us know if you hear of any development proposals which might affect us and our immediate communities. We’re aware of the gold mining proposals in the Forest Park and that developers RES have retained an option on the land at Keirs Hill and are keeping an eye on these. The remit of SSfS is to defend against any and all inappropriate development that would seek to undermine the uniquely special landscape, environment, heritage and ecosystem which define Straiton and its environs.
We believe the formation of the Galloway National Park would benefit this area and recommend that people sign up for £5 to be kept informed and show their support. To find out more click here
Finally, our raffle raised £118 which will be donated to the McCandlish Hall towards new facilities and £80 was raised for Save Straiton from the sale of James Fullarton’s prints and other paintings.