Objections mount up to Ascog proposals

Two very different development proposals in Ascog have come in for renewed criticism this week.

A proposed housing development on ground next to Southpark has attracted a further 13 objections following an article in last week’s issue of The Buteman, while the three proposed wind turbines at Ascog Farm have come under fire in this week’s letters page.

Planning permission for the Ascog housing site is currently up for renewal, with the site itself up for sale.

Objector Ronald Falconer stated in his written submission to Argyll and Bute Council: “I consider the density of the proposed development is not consistent with the neighbouring single properties and is overly massive within this context. The proposed layout is inconsistent with other single properties in the area surrounded by substantial grounds in a semi-rural area.”

Norman Foster said: “After waiting six years, this planning proposal is obviously not appropriate or suitable.

“It is totally out of character with the homes in the surrounding area, comprising some of the finest listed buildings on the island.”

Not all objections received were against any form of development on the site; Mr Foster went on to say he had “no objection to a ‘balanced development’”, but wanted to ensure the housing is comparable and sympathetic to other homes in the vicinity.

Beryl Harrison said: “Whilst I am not opposed to the residential development of this site, the two block of flats are not in keeping with the area and should be removed.”

Elizabeth Henderson said: “I think two well-built detached houses would be acceptable in the field south of Southpark, but flats are not appropriate in my opinion.

The final date for representations on the proposed development is Friday, July 6.

Meanwhile, the application for the erection of three wind turbines at Ascog Farm has drawn new criticism from Jim Mitchell, who in a letter to the July 6 issue of The Buteman called turbines “fast buck machines” and “three-armed bandits”.

“They are environmentally unsound in every sense and their credentials are based on a false premise,” Mr Mitchell wrote.

“Without the heavily subsidised feed in tariffs (FITS) they just would not be getting built.

“If the McVeys want to revive an old tradition on their land, then why not re-introduce hydro-electric power? It is discreet and will not destroy the beauty of what they assert they value. “

Mr Mitchell was responding to a letter last week from Elspeth McVey, one of the applicants, who said she was “hoping to make a huge investment on Bute, one that in many different ways will create opportunities for local employment and skills development”.

The current Ascog wind farm debate was sparked by comments from Struan Stevenson, Conservative MEP for Scotland; we emailed Mr Stevenson’s colleague, Liberal Democrat MEP and former Bute resident George Lyon, inviting him to contribute, but had yet to receive a response at the time this article was published.