For information: On May 30th, the procedural hearing was held about the competency of the HCC appeal of the Reporters decision regarding the Gilston Hill Windfarm application. The decision was given to allow the appeal to proceed. The summary below was written for HCC to publish. We hope to have a timetable for the appeal by the end of next week.
Lord Malcolm, at a hearing today (30 May 2019) in the Inner House of the Court of Session, refused Forsa Energy Services Limited’s objection to the competency of Heriot Community Council’s appeal against the decision of Mr Croft, Reporter dated 7 February 2019 to grant planning permission for Gilston Windfarm. Lord Malcolm also ordered Forsa Energy Services Limited to pay the Community Council’s expenses caused by the objection. In summary Lord Malcolm’s opinion was that the community council were able to take the decision to appeal without it being debated at a public meeting, and that he had been provided with nothing which could support Forsa’s submission that the community council had acted unlawfully or contrary to morality. Lord Malcolm’s also said that if the decision to appeal had been taken improperly, which he was not persuaded was the case, he would have been satisfied that the decision was in any event ratified at a meeting of the Community Council on 1 May 2019. As a result of this decision a hearing will be assigned in due course to consider the Community Council’s grounds of appeal against Mr Croft’s decision.
Summary of the grounds of appeal
That the Reporter:
- Failed to give adequate reasons for disagreeing with the first reporter’s conclusions.
- Failed to take account of the development plan, specifically the Supplementary Planning Guidance on Renewable Energy.
- Failed to take proper account of SBC’s reasons for refusal.
- Failed to take account of landscape impact, or at least failed to give reasons for assessing no impact.
- Gave insufficient opportunity for interested parties to make representations about noise, which was one of the determining issues.
- Failed to take account of the developer’s own recommended noise limits and imposed a noise condition that does not comply therewith.
Statement from Raeshaw
As an integral member of the local community, Raeshaw Estate is financially supporting the Community Council’s appeal against the way in which the Gilston windfarm decision was reached.