Bute wind farm project site visit

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The group behind plans for a community power generation scheme on Bute held a visit this week to the site where they hope to locate two wind turbines.

Bute Community Power’s visit to the hilltop site, about half a kilometre from Auchintirrie farm, gave interested parties the chance to assess the impact of any turbines on views from the surrounding landscape.

The company hopes to persuade island residents to invest in the project, which aims to generate income for community groups and projects on Bute as well as contributing to the island’s power needs.

BCP secretary Reeni Kennedy-Boyle told the Auchintirrie gathering that the company - set up as a ‘community benefit society’, or co-op - is to assess the feasibility of two turbines at Auchintirrie, each 35 metres tall from ground to hub, with a maximum height of a further 12 metres from hub to blade tip.

“It would be great from BCP’s perspective to get to a point where we were generating enough renewable energy for Bute that if the grid fails we could still meet the power needs of the island,” Ms Kennedy-Boyle said.

“We would hope that if everything goes smoothly and the project receives planning permission we could be generating electricity between a year and 18 months from now.”

A contractor is due to be appointed by August 1 to carry out a feasibility study into the proposal, while BCP is holding an informal drop-in session at St Paul’s Church Hall in Rothesay’s Deanhood Place between 11am and 3pm on Wednesday, July 30.