By Kathryn Wylie
A Borders village which took on the Scottish Government over its decision
to approve a controversial wind farm there has won its appeal.
Heriot Community Council took legal action against a reporter’s decision to
overturn Scottish Borders Council’s rejection of the proposed Gilston wind
farm on landscape impact grounds.
Residents believed the reporter failed to properly address the issues
arising from the appeal and gained financial backing from nearby Raeshaw
Estate to pursue the matter this spring.
And that move paid off last week as Scottish ministers agreed to quash the
reporter’s decision and order that the appeal be looked at again by a
different reporter.
Forsa Energy, the developer hoping to build seven turbines on land north
west of Gilston Farm, has since sold its wind farm portfolio to German firm
BayWa.
It now falls upon that firm to decide whether to continue with the Gilston
application.
Community council chairman John Williams said the Heriot committee is
pleased with the outcome.
“It vindicates the difficult decision to bring about such a serious and
complex legal action,” he said.
“Such actions are seldom undertaken and only succeed where the court finds
or, as in this case, ministers accept that the decision was not in
accordance with the law.
“The bar set by the Scottish courts is high, and this success emphasises
that it was the correct thing to do in the circumstances.
“It goes without saying that Heriot Community Council could only bring the
action with the full financial support of Raeshaw Estate.”

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