Ben Wyvis windfarm plans opposed by residents

Proposals for a new windfarm on the foothills of Ben Wyvis have been met with dismay from locals.

A view of Ben Wyvis from Garbat. Picture: Comp

ABO Wind UK Ltd yesterday unveiled plans to erect five turbines at Woodlands Farm, behind Cnoc a’ Bhreacaich hill.

A previous application for a 17-turbine windfarm on the eastern side of Ben Wyvis was rejected by Highland Council, but developers say the latest plans will have minimal impact on the landscape as the site is partially obscured by hills in Dingwall and Evanton.

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However, the proposed windfarm would stil be visible from Culbokie on the Black Isle.

A number of local residents have objected to the plans, arguing that the windfarms would spoil the view of the Cromarty Firth and could also lead to additional turbines being built on the site.

Speaking to the Press & Journal, May Stevenson, 69, said: “We have had more and more turbines in the area, and though they are starting with five, who is to say they won’t get permission for a lot more after this.”

ABO Wind project manager Clark Crosbie admitted that the turbines would be visible on higher ground, but said they were “aware of the sensitivities surrounding the views to Ben Wyvis.”

Crosbie said: “We originally had six turbines planned when we first went public but we have dropped out of the arrangement which has allowed us to drop the others further down the hill.

“The visualisations show there is no visibility of them from several of the viewpoints, it is only when you start to move futher away and to higher ground that they become apparent.”

Another consultation on the Ben Wyvis proposal is expected to get underway today.