The deadline for public consultation on the new controversial coal power station plans has been extended to 20 August.

Cunninghame North MSP Kenny Gibson said: "I spoke to Jim Mather MSP, Minister for Energy and he told me he saw no problem regarding an extension, given the complexity and the time of year.

"This should enable the public a much more detailed look at the plans before the submission of formal objections." Fairlie Community Council had written a letter appealing for an extension to the original 28 day period which was due to close at the end of June. Meanwhile, Ayrshire Power, the company proposing to develop a new multi-fuel power station with Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology at Hunterston is encouraging local people to attend forthcoming community consultation surgeries on the project.

The surgeries have been arranged following the announcement by Ayrshire Power that it had submitted its planning application for the development to the Scottish Government's Energy Consents Unit on 2 June.

The aim of the three events is to allow members of the community to put their questions about the project to the Ayrshire Power team during the formal public consultation period.

Two surgeries are being held at Largs Sailing Club at Largs Yacht Haven, Irvine Road, on Tuesday 29th and Wednesday 30th June from 1pm - 9pm.

A third surgery is scheduled for Thursday 1st July at Garrison House, 2 Clifton Street, Millport from 12 noon - 7pm.

Members of the community are welcome to attend without an appointment but anyone wishing to arrange an appointment should send their contact information, the details of their enquiry and their preference for date and the approximate time to or Ayrshire Power Limited, 16 Robertson Street, Glasgow, G2 8DS CONCH Public Meeting The Communities Opposed to a new coal power station at Hunterston are holding a public meeting on Monday 28th June, 7.45pm at West Kilbride Village Hall and are urging the public to go along and debate the controversial plan. Speakers confirmed: RSPB, Dr Mandy Meikle and local residents from Largs, Fairlie and West Kilbride. Additonal speakers are being arranged on energy issues and health impact of coal.