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Local housebuilder says decision to reject small development in Angus ‘beggars belief’

Bill Green, from Strathmore Homes, at the site
Bill Green, from Strathmore Homes, at the site

A house builder has hit out at Angus Council after a small development in Monikie was rejected on the grounds there are already enough homes in the county.

Bill Green, director of Strathmore Homes, says the Craigton of Monikie development is needed and the firm has been left dumbfounded by the local authority’s decision.

The plans, submitted last September, would see an existing house on land adjacent to Monikie Primary School demolished.

Seven bungalows would then be built on the Rowanbank Cottage site, which borders the B961.

Mr Green said: “It beggars belief.

“One of the points raised as part of their refusal was that there are enough houses in Angus already.

“Does the Scottish Government realise this? I thought that we were trying to build more houses all across the country – this does not appear to be the case in Angus.

“This refusal note also does not take into account any allowance for the overspill from Dundee – which is literally next door.”

In a decision notice published online, Angus Council states the “alleged housing shortfall” the applicant relies on in support of its case “does not exist”.

It adds there is no “wider public interest” in allowing the development.

Dundee’s lack of quality housing has long been acknowledged with the council there eager to encourage developments.

However, the decision notice from Angus Council states there is expected to be a “surplus” of housing in south Angus once developments are complete in the next few years.

Monikie sits just four miles from the Dundee-Angus border.

Mr Green also claims the planning department made an “error” when drawing up its development boundary for the Monikie settlement but won’t review it for over three years.

He said: “We were told that the site could not be entertained as the Settlement Boundary did not include the grass area of the site, only the house.

“We stated that this was clearly a mistake by whoever drew up the plans.

“We have now been advised that they have until the end of 2022 (to review the boundary).

“How can this be right ? How can it possibly take over three years to review the settlement boundaries in Angus?”

He added: “There does not appear to be any commercial awareness within the planning department, if this is the case.

“If it takes over three years to review the boundaries of Angus it would appear that Angus is closed for development until then.

“We at Strathmore Homes are all local men (four of us) and provide employment for local tradesmen, unlike the large national housebuilders who are building vast estates all around the perimeter of Dundee.

“How can it be right that they can do this but we, as a small local builder, cannot build seven simple bungalows?”

An Angus Council spokesman said: “The individual concerned has the right of appeal if he is dissatisfied with the decision that was made, but we would also be happy if he wishes to contact us directly with any questions or concerns he may have.”

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