The company behind controversial plans for a battery storage farm on the outskirts of Clydebank have confirmed the size of the proposed site following local backlash.

Green energy firm Apatura say the proposals for the Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) plant on fields at the back of Faifley will now be 8.5 hectares – down from the originally planned 29 hectares.

The renewable enterprise insists the change is a result of them taking on board community concerns during a public consultation last summer.

In July, residents close to the site – which sits on East Dunbartonshire land alongside Cochno Road – were lettered about a bid to build a 560MW lithium battery facility on 29 hectares of greenbelt space – potentially making it the largest of its kind in Europe.

Two public events were held at the Skypoint Centre through consultancy firm AAH and now Apatura say they have listened to residents.

A spokesperson for Apatura said: "Apatura is not aware of any statutory timescales for determination for section 36 applications and each application is considered on its own merits. Therefore, we are unable to confirm an anticipated date for determination at this stage.

"Apatura, despite no statutory requirement for this, undertook pre-application consultation with the local community, including the hosting of two events.

"All comments received as part of the pre-application consultation of the scheme have been considered by Apatura. As part of this consideration, the overall development area of the scheme has been reduced to approximately 8.5 hectares to ensure the impacts of the scheme are also reduced.”

The issue of a community benefit package for local homeowners, should the plans which currently sit with the Scottish Government get the go-ahead, was also raised when the Clydebank Post spoke to locals recently.

And Apatura confirmed there will be a financial reward for those living nearby.

"Furthermore, Apatura is also willing to provide a community benefit fund to ensure the local community and its residents benefit from the scheme,” they added.

“This is something which will be discussed with the councils and relevant stakeholders as the application progresses.

"Whilst local resistance to the scheme is noted, there was also a general acknowledgement that there is a need for more investment in renewable energy technologies in order to address the ongoing climate crisis and the legal requirement to achieve net zero by 2045."

On Friday, January 26, worried residents held a meeting – again in Skypoint – which was “incredibly well attended with standing room only".

Provost Douglas McAllister attended alongside fellow Labour Councillor for the Kilpatrick Ward, Councillor Lawrence O’Neil and SNP Councillor Sophie Traynor.

He told the Post West Dunbartonshire Council (WDC) have been given an extended deadline to submit their stance on the battery storage farm after the original February 21 date was pushed until May 15.

He said: “I was able to advise those present that WDC had finally received the consultation document from the Energy Consents Unit of the Scottish Government.

“The section 36 application will bypass local council planning committees and will be determined by Scottish Ministers.

“Therefore, the final decision on this application will rest with Ministers of the SNP Green Government at Holyrood.

“In the summer of 2023, when I first learned of this proposal, I insisted that WDC be regarded as a consultee.

“Therefore, this matter will be discussed by the planning committee of WDC and our response will be issued to the Scottish Government.”

Residents have until February 21, 2024, to submit their views to Scottish Ministers.