Fears rise again for Marykirk over-population

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TWO YEARS ago Tenants First Housing Co-operative applied to Aberdeenshire Council for permission to build 15 affordable dwelling houses, eight affordable flats and wood chip burning facilities on land adjoining Kirktonhill Road, Marykirk.

However, this was viewed with such alarm in the village that 38 letters of objection were submitted to the council’s planning department.

In addition, Mearns Community Council lodged a formal protest to the application.

At that time the community council invited Tenants First to the village hall to answer questions about their then planning application. It was after that meeting was held that opposition grew.

Now, Tenants First Housing Co-operative is taking the initiative by inviting the public to a meeting in the village hall at 6.30 p.m. on Thursday, April 28, to speak to them.

It would seem clear that a current or future application will be the item on the agenda.

In order for those who wish to attend the meeting and ask questions to be properly briefed, local representatives on the Mearns Community Council will be at the village hall on Saturday (April 23), at 7pm. to go over the situation and answer any questions.

A spokeswoman said: “This is one of the most important issues for Marykirk for many years, which could affect everyone in the village. Please come along if you possibly can.”

Assuming the meeting concerns a planning applications broadly similar to the previous one, questions to be answered include: Will local people be first to apply for the affordable housing? Is the infrastructure in place for this number of houses? Can Marykirk’s community benefit from Tenants First, for example the school, play park, roads, or any other public areas?

Fears expressed two years ago related to traffic capacity on what is effectively a single-track road with restricted visibility at its junction; sewage operating beyond capacity; inadequate mains water supply, inability of the present surface water drainage system to cope in periods of heavy rain; the woodchip burning facility situated too near the school; lack of facilities at the primary school, and numbers at Mearns Academy over-capacity; and limited public transport opportunities for those with no car.

A spokesman for Tenants First Co-operative told the Review that it is important to connect fully with the local community, and that the public meeting on April 28 will be furnished with all the relevant drawings, plans, etc.

He added that everyone is welcome at the meeting.