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Yet another Alternative for InchCape to consider .. and HES & ELC Planners!

It's Official

In writing.

Historic Environment Scotland wont Consult the 1745 Battle Trust when it considers whether to Object or Waive Through InchCape's Re-application to Build its SubStation on the 1745 Battlesite

However .... it will take into account all the information and research that has been conducted and collated since it originally withdrew its initial Objection after un-minuted discussions with Inchcape.

Accordingly, working with the Coastal Regeneration Alliance [CRA] a 1745 Battlefield Carnet, a portfolio of relevant material, is being created, which will include the 13,000 named opponents of Inchcape's proposal to build its SubStation on the battlefield.

Inchcape always stated it only went to the battlefield because there was no place else that would work for the National Grid connection.

1. Well, as is now only too clear after the Demolition of Cockenzie Power Station, there's ample brownfield land available there that would be more cost effective in access terms. Agreed Scottish Power are adamant they wont discuss releasing it at this juncture but that is a specious excuse in the context of the Master Planning process currently in hand where kite flying options are starting to emerge.

2. Now, thanks to painstaking research by CRA, Alternative brownfield outwith the curtilage of Scottish Power has been identified, which is also more cost effective for the requisite National Grid connectivity for Inchcape's SubStation.

Beware the tricks of the profession here however!

To debate and discuss these two brownfield areas for the location of the SubStation, both HES and ELC normally assert that they can only consider applications that are formally tabled - not explore battlefield saving options outwith the applications.

They cannot permit themselves to think outside their box! They're boxed in!

The Battle Trust and CRA beg to differ. HES, in deciding whether to Object or not, as it is required to do by Statute, is required to consider the best conservation interests of the battlefields in its National Inventory - which Prestonpans certainly is. HES asserts that it does so in the context of 'national policy' [not yet publicly defined].

The Battle Trust and CRA have no problem with that. Both presume and accept that such national policy can well necessitate bringing 'ocean wind generated power' ashore, and that Cockenzie is an eminently sensible place so to do in the light of the extant National Grid connectivity. But there is nothing in any defensible definition of national policy that can assert that when viable, more cost effective, alternatives are to hand that they should not be explored in exercise of HES's responsibility to conserve the nation's battlefields. The Battle Trust and CRA both confidently expect HES to reinstate its Objection.

Equally, in the context of the Master Planning that ELC with Scottish Enterprise' support has in hand, everything in and out of the box is quite sensibly on the table! It would be unthinkable and unconscionable that ELC would make a planning decision re the Inchcape SubStation that pre-empts its own Master Planning process.

Published Date: February 18th 2017

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