Fight is on to save greenbelt from builders

Kessington Farm, Bearsden.
Kessington Farm, Bearsden.

Residents have vowed to fight a planning application by Mansell Homes to build dozens of homes on greenbelt land in Bearsden.

The developer wants to builda total of 80 new homes on a site at Kessington Farm, close to Boclair Academy.

And while they admit that it’s greenbelt, they hope to exploit a Scottish Government edict that calls for councils to free up protected land for housebuilding.

It is understood that it’s under this context that the 3.5 hectare site, almost the size of five football pitches, came to the company’s attention.

Mansell Homes say the proposed housing estate would include the planting of a new community woodland and wetlands drainage system to increase biodiversity.

The developer also claims that 25 per cent of the houses built will be affordable and they have held a series of public exhibitions to allow people to see their plans.

However, there is already strong opposition from locals who fear that the greenbelt would be destroyed.

William Gillies from Inveroran Drive, said: “They want to build all around my house. I’m going to fight this to the end.

“The development is too dense - they want to build a tremendous amount of houses in a small area and the local schools are already full.

“There’s a high volume of traffic here already and these additional houses will make it worse - it will create a massive amount of congestion.

“There are other much more suitable sites for houses to be built in the area why do they want to take away an area of land which is used by local people for walking and leisure?”

Another man, who asked not to be named, from Woodvale Avenue, said: “The entire nature of this street will change if this goes through.

“This used to be a quiet haven for local dog walkers and kids to go for strolls as well as just relax.”

He added: “The view beside Kessington farm is priceless and truly beautiful. This project will result in Temple Woods being enclosed in houses.

“It will totally spoil the area and destroy the peaceful family home I grew up in.”

Diane Campbell, director of East Dunbartonshire goverance and regulation, said: “GVA James Barr submitted a full planning application on behalf of Mansell Homes for a residential development with associated access, landscaping and services on August 11. The application is currently awaiting consideration.”

Mansell Homes were unavailable for comment.