A Winchburgh planning row has moved up a gear as we reveal that one in every two village residents have signed a petition to call a halt to a developer’s plans.
The 668 signature document was presented to councillors, Janet Campbell, Tony Boyle and Diane Calder at the site of the bitter conflict between residents and developers on Wednesday.
Local residents are incensed at Stewart Milne Homes’ plans to use an access route which they claim will destroy the tranquility and rural natureof a much-used country walk leading to a duck pond.
Originally, the plans to develop land in Winchburgh for housing stock was the subject of intense and heated debate, however, a compromise was reached in 2010 and a ‘‘master plan’’ was given consent by West Lothian Council’s planning department.
Now the company has submitted new plans to develop the steadings at Glendevon Farm, which the community council claim was not discussed with them and completely ignores previous consultation agreements.
A West Lothian Council spokesman said: “We have received 15 objections to the planning application by Stewart Milne Homes for residential development at Glendevon Farm in Winchburgh”
“As the planning authority, we have a statutory obligation to impartially consider any applications lodged with us on their individual merit. All applications must go through the correct planning process, to allow officers to assess whether development accords with planning policies and other material considerations and make a decision on whether they would recommend it is granted or refused.
“This application is still at the consultation phase, anyone with comments should make sure they are with us by Friday, 6 December so we can ensure their views are included.”
A spokesman for Stewart Milne Homes said: “Our proposals and designs have been carefully thought through to complement the unique setting and rural character of the area.
“We will ensure the biodiversity of the village pond is preserved and we are carefully considering the ecology of the area.
“We are taking steps to ensure the safety of pedestrians by creating an additional footpath, and will provide appropriately designed lighting to fit with the rural feel.
“Along with our colleagues Regenco - the master plan developer - we are arranging a meeting with the community council and local residents after which a planning application for the lane improvement works will be submitted.
“Meantime the views of the local community can be communicated through the Council’s planning department.”