Firm’s move to town may be scuppered

A GROWING oil-related company coming into Montrose, with plans passed for building on the site at Forties Road that they are acquiring from Angus Council, sounds like great news.

But there has been a hiccup which may keep oil supplier Nemesis Equipment Ltd., from making the move they are very keen on.

The site, Plot 2 of phase two, has been described as ‘fully serviced’ and as far as we are aware both seller and purchaser believed that this was the case.

Until Scottish & Southern Energy (SSE), played their joker, that is.

The electricity provider wants £21,000 to connect the site to power, a demand which has left Nemesis co-owner Tom Johnston stunned, and feeling like he wants to pull out of finally putting his signature to the purchase of the land.

He told us that he is desperate to get into Montrose. Currently, Nemesis operates from Forfar, but several of his staff live in the Montrose area, and he believes that being located in a place where other companies in the oil business are his neighbours can only be good for the future.

Mr Johnston says he has invested a lot of money in architects’ fees in order to obtain the planning permission for the buildings he needs, and this might now turn out to be wasted.

He said: “If the demand for connection had been anything up to £10,000 then that might have been considered reasonable. But it is as if SSE are not prepared to listen or to negotiate.”

A spokeswoman Angus Council said: “We don’t discuss individual businesses, but we work to assist companies to expand or relocate in Angus, offering them help and advice.

“We have sites in various locations which are serviced to industry standard, but each business has individual and specific requirements for level of power, water or telecommunications and has to deal with the appropriate utilities company to tailor their service.”

A spokeswoman for SSE told the Review: “The site in question is not a serviced site.

“Significant infrastructure needs to be put in place in order to accommodate the business’s needs.

“We are meeting Angus Council this week to discuss the lack of suitable infrastructure at the site and will work to get the issue resolved.

“Our charges for connection to Scottish Hydro Electric power distribution are clearly displayed on our website, and we are a regulated business.”