Court ruling goes against conservationists - but they vow to battle on
A charity looks to have lost its campaign to block a massive wind farm development.
Energy giant SSE wants to create the 67 turbine Stronelairg project on land close to its Glendoe hydro electric scheme near Fort Augustus.
Last year, conservation charity the John Muir Trust (JMT) secured a judicial review of the Scottish Government's decision approving the project.
However, judges have now upheld an appeal by the government and SSE, clearing the way for the wind farm to go ahead.
JMT said it was disappointed by the decision – but will explore all legal options.
Chief executive Stuart Brooks said: “We took out this legal action reluctantly because of the sheer scale of the development proposed by SSE in an area of wild land, the potential ecological damage to a vast area of peatland and the breadth of opposition – which included Scottish Natural Heritage, the Cairngorms National Park Authority the Mountaineering Council of Scotland and three out of four local councillors. Objectors outnumbered supporters of the application by a margin of 15 to one.
“Lord Jones, in the initial judicial review, found in favour of the trust’s legal arguments that the Scottish Government had not followed the correct planning process. The Inner House judges have disagreed with that assessment. We are now taking further legal advice and considering options.
“We are grateful for all the support we have received from our members and the public, including over a thousand financial donations.”