Council ‘bears share of drug haul blame’

Police found a major cannabis plantation in Port Bannatyne on October 20.
Police found a major cannabis plantation in Port Bannatyne on October 20.

Argyll and Bute Council bears most of the blame for allowing a major cannabis cultivation to be set up in an empty block of flats in Port Bannatyne, according to one village resident.

In a letter in the new issue of The Buteman, Michael Judd says that if the council had paid closer attention to the state of the Buckingham Terrace flats in Castle Street - and other empty properties where drugs have been found in the past - the chances of the buildings becoming derelict and used for illegal purposes would be greatly reduced.

Mr Judd’s letter was sparked by the discovery of cannabis with an estimated street value of £900,000 over two days last week.

That haul followed the discovery of cannabis plants worth around £30,000 at another property in the village in February 2014.

A council spokesperson said: “Ultimately the responsibility for the maintenance of a property lies with its owner.

“We regularly inspect derelict buildings and take action as necessary.

“We would encourage members of the public to report have any concerns they have to either the police or the council.”

* Read Mr Judd’s letter in full in the October 30 issue of The Buteman - on sale now.