A deal has been struck to allow part of Carnoustie’s world-famous golf links to be used for cabling from what will become Scotland’s largest offshore windfarm.
Angus Council and Carnoustie Golf Links have dropped their objections to a compulsory purchase order made by Seagreen for its £6billion, 120-turbine development around 15 miles off the county’s coast.
The objections had been due for consideration in a three-day Scottish Government hearing scheduled for next month.
They centred around concern over the project’s potential impact on major golf tournaments such as The Open Championship, which injected more than £20 million to the Angus economy on its last visit in 2018, drawing 172,000 visitors from around the globe.
The voluntary agreements will now allow Seagreen to bring ashore the underground cables via the golf links to connect the wind farm to a sub-station at Tealing.
The revised plan is intended to minimise impact on the Championship course, both during the construction phase and in the longer term.
Carnoustie’s Buddon course will be affected but, in a letter to Carnoustie season ticket holders, links chief executive Michael Wells has told players alternative tees will be put in place.
Preparatory works on the perimeter of the Buddon could begin later this summer, with the project scheduled to get under way after October’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
Angus Council leader, Arbroath independent David Fairweather, said: “The Open helped to boost the wider tourism economy with over 60% of spectators planning return visits to Angus for a golf or leisure break. Therefore we had to be sure that the integrity of the course would be maintained while securing this hugely significant investment in Angus.
“This agreement is good news for all as Seagreen represents an outstanding example of the council’s strategy of low carbon, clean growth, with the creation of many jobs both in the construction and operation of the windfarm.”
Seagreen project director John Hill said: “We’re very grateful to the Carnoustie Golf Links Management Committee and Angus Council for their constructive approach to these discussions and we look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with them in the future.
“This agreement is a further step forward in progressing what will become Scotland’s largest offshore wind farm, helping to meet Scotland’s net-zero targets and tackle climate change, while also protecting Carnoustie’s place as a world-leading golf destination and host for major championship golf.”
Mr Wells said: “Carnoustie Golf Links is pleased to see a positive conclusion to this long-anticipated project that will help to support Scotland’s target for net-zero emissions of all greenhouse gases by 2045.”