St Andrews launches wind turbine objection

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir February 9, 2012 11:18

The hotel on the world’s most famous golf course has lodged a formal objection to a planning application by St Andrews University to build six wind turbines in the area.

Last year, Herb Kohler, owner of St Andrews’ Old Course Hotel, announced a multi-million pound project to refurbish the Hamilton Hall building and create 26 holiday apartments, some of which would be for sale for more than £5 million.

However, the 12 megawatt wind farm, featuring six 100 metre turbines, which Scotland’s oldest university hopes to create at nearby Kenly Farm in a bid to protect itself against energy costs of £5.4 million a year, will be visible from some of these new properties as well as the building’s rooftop terrace.

The hotel has written to its local planning authority to oppose the plan, stating that it would damage local business.

The Kenly Landscape Protection Group, which is drawing inspiration from Donald Trump, who has stopped work on his golf course in Aberdeen until uncertainty over a nearby wind farm project has been resolved, has been formed.

“The plans will wreck St Andrews’ iconic setting and damage tourism,” said Linda Holt, a spokeswoman for the group.

“Turbines are bad for business, especially if your business is one of the world’s top golf resorts.

“Given the seamless hospitality experience on offer to worldwide visitors and local residents to St Andrews, the proposals will have a detrimental visual impact upon visitors to the club.

“If the university wind farm goes ahead, Hamilton Hall residents will enjoy a clear view of the turbines from the upper floors and communal rooftop terrace.

“The Old Course Hotel and resort should not be underestimated in terms of its significance as a major resource to the Fife and Scottish economy. It is one of St Andrews’ highest employers with more than 300 jobs and its relevance to the continued growth of the Fife economy is a key material consideration.

“In the luxury golf resort business, confidence is key and major stakeholders have understandably shied away from drawing attention to the turbine danger. But like Donald Trump, the owners of the Old Course know that the reality of a wind farm on the door step of the home of golf spells disaster if you are vying to be the world’s top golfing destination.

“Other golf courses and hotels in and around St Andrews will also suffer. Fairmont St Andrews is barely a mile from the proposed wind farm, and famous links courses east of St Andrews such as Kingsbarns will also be overshadowed by the turbines.”

However, a survey carried out among people attending public meetings in Boarhills and Kingsbarns in 2010 reported that 46 per cent of people were in favour of the planned development, and 36 per cent were against.

The university has also stated that a form of community fund will be created to ensure that local villages share in the benefits of the wind farm project.

Last year Golf Club Management reported on several golf clubs that have installed wind farms on their courses in order to cut costs.

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir February 9, 2012 11:18
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  1. SheVegas (@shevegas) March 14, 15:51

    Hotel on world’s most famous golf course objects St Andrews University to building six wind turbines in the area.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Whitney Reid (@WhitneyReid2) February 13, 17:33

    Will be interesting to see how this unfolds…. St Andrews launches wind turbine objection

    Reply to this comment
  3. (@golfinfrancecom) February 13, 10:11

    Most famous golf course Vs scotland oldest Uni. Protecting beauty lands Vs protecting environment. What are U thoughts?

    Reply to this comment
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