Six giant wind turbines for St Andrews29th October, 2013 by Alistair Dunsmuir
Six giant wind turbines are to be built overlooking the ‘home of golf’ at St Andrews, as several golf clubs are facing the issue of having turbines erected nearby.
Each turbine by the home of golf will be 328 feet tall – making them taller than Big Ben, the Tate Modern and Norwich Cathedral, and about five times the height of the Angel of the North. They will be located just three miles from St Andrews’ Old Course and will be visible from several points at the world-famous venue.
However, St Andrews Links Trust, which manages the town’s seven public courses, is said to be ‘relaxed’ about the decision to grant planning permission for St Andrews University, following an appeal, to build the turbines on nearby farmland.
The university will be the first in the UK to have its own wind farm, which will be used to power its buildings.
A spokesman for the university said: “We are delighted that our appeal has been upheld and that this important project can finally go ahead.
“This has always been central to our efforts to generate our own clean, green power, reduce our exposure to crippling external energy price rises and protect local jobs in Fife.
“We recognise that our plans prompted passionate opposition from some people, but also very significant levels of support from within the local community.”
The decision comes as several other golf clubs in the UK, especially Scotland, have campaigned against wind turbines being built near their courses.
A proposed development of seven wind turbines overlooking Gleneagles, host of the 2014 Ryder Cup, has been refused after the golf club said they could damage the success of the tournament, even though they could not be seen from the course.
Meanwhile, work is expected to start on building a 410 feet turbine – making it taller than Salisbury Cathedral and all of the towers at London’s Barbican Estate – near to Cathkin Braes Golf Club in South Lanarkshire.
The club’s secretary, David Moir, said: “We value the tranquil setting of our course and the beautiful views that we enjoy over Glasgow and the surrounding area. It is one of the reasons why this club has a healthy membership.
“We do not want another wind turbine near the course.”
And Cardigan Golf Club in Wales is celebrating after plans to build a 220 feet wind turbine overlooking its course have been shelved.
Members said they feared for the club’s future if the development, which would have powered 300 homes, would have gone ahead. The scheme was dropped when the landowner withdrew his permission.
Ironically, several other golf clubs are facing battles with their local communities to build wind turbines on their land, which would power their clubhouses and generate income.
South Moor Golf Club in Durham has had planning permission refused for two giant turbines, on the basis that they could have an impact on airport radar, while Kinloss Country Golf Club and Forfar Golf Club in Scotland have both sought planning permission to install their own turbines.