Jun 3 2011 by Kaiya Marjoribanks, Stirling Observer Friday
DEVELOPERS have lost their bid to build five houses near Kippen on what was once Europe’s largest mink farm.
Stirling Council’s planning panel had refused on outline application by Gary and Carol Neill to build the houses on land east of Rochoill in Dasher Road, last November.
The couple subsequently appealed to the Scottish Government against the refusal.
However, the appeal has now been dismissed.
The appeal reporter said: “The considerable loss of trees would seriously damage the landscape and the proposal is contrary to Local Plan policy regarding development in the Area of Great Landscape Value (AGLV). The proposal for five dwellings would extend the building group eastwards along the track into the woodland without any clear appropriate topographical stop.
“The proposed dwellings on the southern part of the site would adversely destroy the amenity value of the southern part of the Trough Wood and breach the Scottish Government’s policy on the control of woodland removal and local plan policy on the protection of the integrity and continuity of woodlands.
“As the remains of the mink farm are substantial, the land to the north of the track remains brownfield, notwithstanding that it now supports a significant cover of regenerated woodland and is supported by the supplmentary planning guidance for housing in the countryside.
“On balance, the disadvantages of the proposal outweigh the benefit of developing the brownfield land and any other disadvantages. The guiding principle stipulates that proposed developments should not conflict with other policies with other policies in the Development Plan.
“As Local Plan policies for the AGLV on the protection and integrity and continuity of woodlands are breached, those policies prevail over the supplementary planning guidance for housing in the countryside.”
When the application was considered by the council’s planning paenl, a report for the couple had said the development would bring a brownfield site back into use.
But council planners had said it was so overgrown it should be treated as woodland, not brownfield.
Twelve objections were received from properties along the Glentirranmuir Road and Dasher Road, raising issues such as right of way, impact on woodland and bird species and setting a precedent for further development. Kippen Community Council had also objected.