Petition aiming to halt area's ill wind

Published: 19th July 2018

Read an article from the Caithness Courier on 4 June 2018 about a petition against the proposed Limekiln and Drum Hollistan wind farms.

Reproduced with the kind permission of the Caithness Courier

"A REAY woman has raised a petition against the proposed Limekiln and Drum Hollistan wind energy schemes.

Retired solicitor Gillian Macpherson said the turbines would tower over the village at a height of around 140 metres – taller than the London Eye.

And she warned: “It would destroy the village and the NC500 route.”

Mrs Macpherson, who has been taking the petition around homes in the area, said: “There is certainly a very large opinion against it. When I go to the doors people just grab the pen out of my hand – they cannot wait to sign.”

The campaigner, who hopes to take the petition to other places, alleged that the plans would be detrimental to wild land and to birds.

She pointed out that some turbines would be only a mile away from the village and would tower over the area as they are reported to be 30 metres higher than the ones at Baillie Wind Farm, with a turbine also proposed for offshore, close to the coast.

Mrs Macpherson said: “Our little village of Reay would be completely surrounded by them. When you leave Sutherland to come in to Caithness all you will see is massive turbines.”

She said it was not until an inquiry was held about the wind farm plans that residents of Reay realised what might happen.

She explained that the plans for Limekiln were previously refused planning permission, but they were then resubmitted conjoined with the application for Drum Hollistan.

Reay Area Windfarm Opposition Group and Highland Council have opposed the conjoining, along with the John Muir Trust.

The Limekiln application is for 21 turbines, up to 139 metres high, while the Drum Hollistan application is for 17 turbines of up to 140 metres. In March, at the public session at the end of the public local inquiry, residents warned that Reay would end up encircled by “a ring of steel”.

More than 80 people attended the session in the village hall which followed six days of evidence in Thurso. The inquiry reporter’s recommendation has yet to be announced."

Reproduced with the kind permission of the Caithness Courier