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Thousands sign petition

Loch Lomond plan ‘the most unpopular in Scotland’

Lomond Banks from Pierhead

Lomond Banks promises to bring jobs and business to the area


 

A proposed tourist development on the shores of Loch Lomond has attracted more than 54,000 objections – said to be a record for a Scottish planning application.

Green MSP Ross Greer met local planners to hand over a petition against the £30 million Lomond Banks project which aims to turn Balloch into a gateway to the area’s attractions.

It includes a 60-bedroom aparthotel, 32-bedroom budget accommodation, a craft brewery, boat house, leisure centre and restaurants, as well as improvements to public footpaths and green spaces.

By Monday afternoon, more than 54,500 people had lodged their opposition via Mr Greer’s website and he called for the planning authority, Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park, to reject giving permission to Flamingo Land Limited and Scottish Enterprise.

Mr Greer said: “Flamingoland Loch Lomond is now the most unpopular planning application in Scottish history and when you look at their proposals, it’s no surprise why.




“Local residents have been joined by people from across Scotland in saying that Loch Lomond’s world famous natural beauty should be protected, not sold off for the profit margins of a private developer.

“Time and time again, it’s only the Greens standing with communities when they fight to protect Scotland’s environment against corporate takeover and destruction.

“Our campaign to save Loch Lomond will continue until the National Park reject these plans and this threat is ended once and for all.”

Lomond Banks director Andy Miller has previously said the resort, on land currently marked for tourism development in the local plan, will be a “quality destination that respects and complements the surrounding area”.

It is estimated the development would create 80 full-time jobs, 50 part-time jobs and 70 seasonal roles in the area.

A revised masterplan was unveiled last month following objections to the original scheme. The new plan involves fewer private houses, reduced from 20 to six, while the proposed lodges/bothies within the grounds of Woodbank House is up from 28 to 50.

Gleneagles’ profits rise

Gleneagles Hotel has reported a 40% rise in operating profits to £3.5 million on a turnover of £55.3m, up by more than £4m,  as the Perthshire resort reaped the benefits of its long-term refurbishment plan.

However, at pre-tax level profits fell from £505,000 to £55,000, on the back of losses relating to asset disposal and increased interest on debt.

Dividends of £4m were paid to owner Ennismore, which bought the hotel from drinks giant Diageo in 2015.

The hotel said it continues to press ahead with investment in new facilities, which recently led to the unveiling of revamped meeting and event space, Ochil House.



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