Hundreds object to canal house plan development

4-2-2017 Picture Jamie Forbes. Bishopbriggs. Football pitch behind Hilton Terrace. Cala Housing Protesters and Councillor Billy Hendry (centre front) against new housing development.
4-2-2017 Picture Jamie Forbes. Bishopbriggs. Football pitch behind Hilton Terrace. Cala Housing Protesters and Councillor Billy Hendry (centre front) against new housing development.

A record-breaking 413 objections have been made against a planning application to build homes on greenspace adjacent to the Forth and Clyde Canal in Bishopbriggs.

Residents and campaigners want East Dunbartonshire planners to reject a development for up to 136 properties north of Meadowburn.

The planning proposals from CALA Homes (West) have prompted widespread fury among local residents.

A key argument is that Bishopbriggs services cannot tolerate additional housing – in particular roads and health services.

A spokeswoman for the Save Bishopbriggs Canal Greenspace campaign group (SBCG) said: “We have been in contact with East Dunbartonshire Council who have confirmed that we have 
broken the record for the number of objections received for any like-for-like proposed housing development in East Dunbartonshire.”

She added: “We’d like to thank everyone who has so far sent their letter of objection. However, it’s the reasoning behind the objections rather than the number of letters that will have the greatest impact.

“The good news is there’s still time to submit objections by email or post – up to March 22 – and we urge those who wish to object but have not yet done so to contact max.wilson@eastdunbarton.gov.uk.”

Councillor Billy Hendry, who is campaigning to safeguard the valuable greenspace, said: “This group has worked tirelessly against this proposal from CALA and they have won the support of the vast majority of local residents.

“There is no doubt in my mind that the application is not in keeping with the area in this beautiful part of Bishopbriggs.

“This is an issue that is being observed from across Scotland and the record-breaking number of objections will keep this campaign alive nationally as well as locally.”

The Save Bishopbriggs 
Canal Greenspace group is holding drop-in workshops at St James the Less, Hilton Road, Bishopbriggs on Saturday, March 18, from 2-4pm, and Monday, March 20, from 5.30-7.30pm.

Residents are also invited to join the SBCG Facebook page at: bit.ly/savebcg

A spokesperson for CALA Homes (West) said: “We are committed to bringing a sensitively integrated development to Bishopbriggs that meets the local housing need.

“This is an area of land that has already been identified for new housing by East Dunbartonshire Council and has been zoned in the recently adopted Local Plan.

“If approved, this will bring long term investment to the area, much-needed affordable housing, as well as a number of new jobs.

“The retention of green open space is at the heart of our proposal and as part of our plans we have paid close consideration to making best use of the site and its natural features.

“As well as an equipped children’s play space, the development would open up access to the canal and provide managed open space that will be for the use of all.

“We are in weekly discussions with East Dunbartonshire Council and we will continue to be guided by them as we progress our development plans for the site.”