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Community / Petition calls for compensation for those ‘severely impacted’ by wind farm

Campaigners highlight the case of Lottie Robertson, who lives in Sandwater House

Sandwater House. Photo: Ronnie Robertson

A PETITION has been launched by an anti-Viking Energy campaign group demanding that people whose “lives are severely impacted” by the wind farm receive compensation.

Save Shetland’s petition uses the example of Charlotte (Lottie) Robertson, a woman in her late 80s who lives in Sandwater House, or the Halfway House.

At the moment a new road is being constructed on the hills behind her home, while work on a construction compound is getting underway off the A970 not too far away.

Save Shetland say that eight of Viking Energy’s 103 turbines will be located within two kilometres of Robertson’s home – a house she has occupied since the 1950s.

Lottie Robertson - her home will be surrounded by huge turbines.Lottie Robertson pictured back in 2012.

Shetland News spoke to Robertson back in 2012 about the wind farm development, and she said she felt “helpless”.

In response, a spokesperson for Viking Energy said: “Charlotte is a very private person and Viking Energy (VEWF) respects her right to keep her affairs private.

“VEWF’s community liaison officer has been in regular contact with Charlotte over a number of years and has taken active steps to provide her with ongoing help and support.

“That help and support will continue, Covid-19 guidance permitting.”

The spokesperson said that Viking Energy has had “several meetings with Shetland Islands Council and Shetland West councillors to discuss Charlotte’s circumstances, the most recent being at the end of February 2020”.

“Both VEWF and the council are ready to consider all options to ensure Charlotte’s welfare, but these things cannot be imposed and are dependent on an approach from Charlotte herself in the first instance.”

As it stands the developer of Viking Energy will pay around £2.2 million a year in funding for community projects from when construction is completed in 2024.

Money will also be paid to those who own land on which turbines will be erected.

The online petition can be found here.