Published: 08/01/2018 07:00 - Updated: 05/01/2018 09:02

Black Isle housing bid creates worries

Written byIain Ramage

CONCERNS have been raised about the scale of a housing development proposed for Avoch.

Revised plans for a 34-home development have been submitted to Highland Council by the Cairn Housing Association.

It hopes to build on a four-acre farmland site off Memorial Field, Station Road.

An initial proposal, in 2009, envisaged 27 homes but was withdrawn. A 2009 application for 30 homes was approved in 2014.

Cairn proposes so-called "affordable housing" to help meet council and Scottish Government policy targets.

At least a quarter would have to be "affordable" to comply with Highland Council policy.

Planning officers have indicated that the proposal largely complies with council policy and the Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan.

Local objector Scott Patience, however, has complained that the amended application "is a huge departure from the original design," going from "a modest development of mixed high-end housing and social housing to a high-density social housing project".

He acknowledges a need for new homes but fears an increased number of proposed properties will "add even greater pressure on the local primary school, which is already at the limit".

He has also registered concern about the potential impact on his nearby home, saying the proposed buildings are far closer than previous documents indicated.

Mr Patience says four of the planned homes would look directly onto his elevated property.

The council’s principal planner Tim Stott states in an interim council response that the application will require a standard developer contribution towards the funding of additional school places.

James Carson, another neighbouring resident, also complained he would suffer a loss of privacy.

He states: "I would hope at a minimum that a substantial fence or wall be put in place to mitigate this at the edge adjoining my property."

No-one was available for comment at Cairn Housing Association.

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