Further delay for plans

PROPOSALS for a major housing development on the edge of Montrose are again on hold due to continuing difficulties in the house-building sector.

The plans for the development at the site at Tayock Bridge, near the Brechin Road, were first submitted around 20 years ago and an application to build 500 houses on the 74-acre site was approved in 2005.

Approval was granted with a conditional limit of 200 homes for the period up to 2011. Landowners James Baillie, of Borrowfield Farm, and Alexander Middleton, of Tayock Farm, were granted a similar extension two years ago to the time limit on the original outline planning permission for the area, zoned for housing in the local plan.

The move now, as then, is to allow more flexibility for the site’s development when the economic situation improves. It gave Mr Baillie and Mr Middleton until this year to lodge detailed applications for the site, with development permitted to begin before March, 2014, but the requested timescale will mean that detailed applications can be lodged up to March 1, 2017.

But while infrastructure services director Eric Lowson recommended approval in his report to today’s (Thursday) Angus Council development standards committee, he said 2017 would be inconsistent with the terms of the local development plan (LDP).

He commented: “The LDP may seek to phase the level of greenfield land release on the remaining part of Brechin Road during 2014-2024, to take account of opportunities presented at Sunnyside Hospital and other brownfield sites.

“Extending the outline permission until March 2017 would not be consistent with this plan-led approach, insofar as it would undermine the principle of deciding the phasing of long-term housing development across the housing market area through the development planning process.

“In seeking to ensure that development is plan-led, and therefore a holistic approach is taken to the release of housing land across the Brechin/Montrose housing market area, it is considered that the time limit within which a reserved matters application should be submitted should be aligned with the LDP process and on that basis should be no later than 2014.

“An approval up to 2014 would allow more time for the applicant while also allowing the council to review the allocation as apart of the new Angus LDP.”