ANTI-WIND FARM campaigners have slammed Fife Council for “hatching secret plans” to build 11 turbines on council land across West Fife.

Scotland Against Spin (SAS) has accused the local authority of “throwing money at a scam which promises a quick buck”, which could see kids playing under 45.5 metres (150 feet) turbines built at schools, sports facilities and parks.

The allegations came after 25 screening applications were registered on the council’s website on 17th September.

Of that total, 11 are in West Fife (see box) but no further details were available.

SAS’ Fife spokeswoman Linda Holt said, “Anyone who knows Fife or has an ounce of planning knowledge will see that most of these sites are utterly wrong.

“Industrial turbines and people do not mix and the last places they should be put is by schools or in parks.” She said there had been “zero public consultation”, adding, “Many of these applications stand a cat in hell’s chance of being consented – they are too close to people and on sites with significant landscape protection.

“But the consultants and agents engaged by Fife Council will be handsomely paid whatever the outcome. "Like a greedy, gullible farmer, Fife Council has fallen for the false promises of wind industry salesmen.

“The tragedy is that the hundreds of thousands of pounds it is wasting on this folly are sorely needed for education and social care in Fife.” Council leader Alex Rowley previously called for a moratorium on all wind applications and Ms Holt called him “a hypocrite” for jumping “onto the wind industry bandwagon with such contempt for the people of Fife”.

Councillor Rowley admitted the plans could potentially generate “millions of pounds” for the council – but said the local authority has “no plans to develop large wind farms”.

He said the proposal to develop small wind turbines on council land was agreed by the executive committee in March 2013, explaining, “The screening applications lodged are for individual, small-scale developments for land which has a Fife Council building on it.

“The council wants to make sure these proposed turbines are put in the right place so these applications follow on from a detailed feasibility study carried out by professional advisers during the last few months.

“The council is also no different from any other applicant and has to apply for permission for these small-scale turbines and go through the rigorous planning process.

"The plans have the potential to generate millions of pounds additional income for the council at a time when it is facing a period of big challenge and change.

"We should be looking at ways to make the best use of resources and the potential to generate new income.

"But any decision to invest in these proposals would require approval from the executive committee.” He continued, “My request for a moratorium on major onshore wind planning applications wasn’t supported by the Scottish Government but, despite that, the council carried out a detailed consultation on its planning policies.

"During that process issues and views raised by Fifers were addressed and influenced updates to strengthen the council’s policies, strategy and guidance on onshore wind turbines.

"Those strengthened guidelines and areas of search help us to ensure the council has greater power to protect our communities.” WHERE THE WIND TURBINES COULD BE BUILT: Single turbine, 45.5m (150ft), 225kw Pitreavie sports ground Dunfermline Public Park Halbeath Park And Ride Single turbine, 26.55m (87ft), 20kw Ballast Bank sports pavilion Paton Street Park, Dunfermline Inverkeithing High School Land to the west of Park Road Primary School Land to the east of South Avenue, Blairhall Single turbine, 34.6m (113ft), 50kw Aberdour Primary School St Columba’s High School Camdean Primary School