Historic Scotland under renewed planning fire

The Scottish Government’s heritage body has come under fire for failing to object to a proposed industrial development near a World Heritage Site - in a case with echoes of the ongoing Bute wind farm controversy.

Historic Scotland decided a proposed quarry close to New Lanark would have “no significant impact” on the setting of Robert Owen’s world-famous model village.

The organisation was criticised last month for deciding that three proposed wind turbines in Ascog, on Bute’s east coast, would have “no significant impact” on the setting of the A-listed buildings at Balmory House, next door to the development, and at Mount Stuart.

The owners of Balmory House and the Mount Stuart Trust’s factor have both written to Historic Scotland urging them to look again at the proposed Ascog development - which, if it goes ahead, would see three turbines, each 74 metres in height from ground to blade tip, built near the top of the 108-metre Ascog Hill.

More than six hundred public comments on the Ascog application have now been received by the planning authority, Argyll and Bute Council; the number of responses makes it almost certain that the fate of the application will be decided by the council’s planning, protective services and licensing committee at a public hearing in Rothesay.

No date has yet been set for any hearing, but we’ll publish the information as soon as a date is decided.