Planning board chair demands inquiry in greenbelt housing appeal

Planning board chair demands inquiry in greenbelt housing appeal

The Planning Board of East Dunbartonshire Council has reiterated its call for a planning inquiry to be held to determine an appeal against refused permission to build 140 homes on greenbelt near Torrance.

The council has spoken out against the Scottish Government’s decision to call in the appeal by Hallam Land Management.

The Planning Board has criticised the involvement of Scottish Government ministers and said it would deprive local people of a voice in the process.

Councillors refused the application in December in line with Planning Officers’ recommendations that building the houses on grazing fields in Tower Farm was contrary to the Council’s Local Plan and contrary to Scottish Planning Policy.

Councillor Billy Hendry, chair of the Planning Board, said: “We heard concerns about road safety, draining and flooding and public transport. Also, more than 170 local people felt strongly enough to object to the application and they deserve to be heard as part of the decision making process.

“Despite all this the applicant appealed and the Scottish Government Minister wants to review it and make a ruling. I am deeply disappointed and uncomfortable with this approach which compromises local democracy and decision making processes.”

”The Planning Board made the right choice for the right reasons: it took account of planning guidance including representations made by local residents. A planning inquiry is now the only right way to go so that a full debate can be heard with residents being given a voice.”

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