Councillors in north east Fife are to be given the final say on new plans for housing in Wormit after a flurry of objections to the proposals.
Persimmon Homes’ blueprint for 161 new properties – forming part of the second phase of its Wormit Farm project – will have to go before local elected members later this year following the submission of around 50 formal objections from concerned local residents.
The developer has stressed that its plan presents an “excellent opportunity” to provide a mixture of new family homes on a site to the west of Kilmany Road already allocated for housing.
But critics argue too many houses are planned for the area, with most objectors suggesting the infrastructure – such as roads, schools and the already stretched doctors’ surgery – could not cope with such a substantial development.
Local historian and author Mairi Shiels is one of the objectors who believes the massive development – adding to the 44 already being built in the area – is “entirely unsuitable on all sorts of grounds”.
“With 200 new houses in total there would be a possibility of a further 300 cars to absorb into the local traffic system causing traffic congestion and further deterioration to our road surfaces, to say nothing of the increased air pollution caused by emissions,” she said.
“Can we really expect the small Wormit Primary School to take in a further 200 to 300 pupils when they are already at close to capacity?
“And perhaps most important of all, what sort of effect would this population increase have on the completely over-stretched Tayview Medical Practice?
“Already they have had to close Tayport surgery in the afternoons because of a lack of available appointments.
“For all the above reasons I object strongly to this development, and trust the planners at Fife Council to realise the complete unsuitability of it.”
Another local woman, Marion Todd, fears the development would “swamp the village”, changing its character completely.
“The road is increasingly peppered with parked cars, making it difficult for cyclists to use the road safely,” she said.
“If even half of these houses have at least one car there would be another 80 cars regularly using this road, causing traffic build up, exhaust fumes, making life very unpleasant for cyclists and pedestrians.
“Wormit simply cannot absorb any more people.”
Despite the large number of objections, statutory consultees including the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), Transport Scotland, Scottish Water and Scottish Natural Heritage have all indicated they have no objections to the application, which will be considered by north east Fife’s planning committee.
A supporting statement from Persimmon Homes submitted along with the plans has urged council planners to support the development when it is finally considered.
“The design solution is an opportunity to provide a pleasant and welcoming new neighbourhood within the community of Wormit,” the developer said.