Major tourism plan for Tarbet and Arrochar on Loch Lomondside

The countryside around Arrochar, Loch Long and Tarbet and Tarbet, Loch Lomond. Pictures by Bill Heaney

By Andy Galloway, Lochside Press

The company behind proposals for a major new tourist development in Tarbet has been told byPark Authority planners that it must supply more information before it can move forward.

A ‘proposal of application’ notice, lodged by Moulsdale Properties Ltd of Cumbernauld, was published on the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority’s website last week, outlining proposals for a village square and building of a ‘tourism and mixed use development’ covering various parts of the village.

But the park authority’s planning department says the company’s proposals have either not met minimum consultation requirements or should be amended or made more inclusive.

In particular, the authority says the company’s proposals to hold one public event to promote its plans, and to stage that event in Balloch, were not appropriate.

No design and access statement, or similar documentation, has yet been produced in relation to the application.

Two map drawings had been published on the park authority’s website, but are no longer available online.

In a letter to Moulsdale Properties, published on the national park’s website, the authority’s planning officials state: “Under regulation 35B(3) of the Planning etc (Scotland) Act 2006, an application for planning permission for this development cannot be submitted before October 28 2019, being 12 weeks from the date of the competent notice being served.

“The minimum consultation that is required to be carried out includes: consult every community council within the application site and give a copy of the proposal of application notice to those community councils, hold at least one public event, and publish a notice in local newspapers.”

The letter then went on to list a number of parties who should also be consulted on the plans, including Transport Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage and three departments of Argyll and Bute Council.

In a letter to Moulsdale Properties, the park authority said: “We note that you propose to hold a public event at The Shore, Balloch. We do not consider this to be the most appropriate location for a sole public event.

“We require that, in addition to this event described in your proposal of application notice, at least one public event in Tarbet/Arrochar should be held. This public event should be held prior to the Balloch event.

“We recommend that the Three Villages Hall in Arrochar would be a suitable venue for a public event.”

It also said the proposed timing of 2pm to 6pm for the Balloch event would make it difficult for working people to attend, and indicated that the public event, or events, should be held from 10am to 9pm instead.

A spokesperson for Moulsdale Properties said: “A Proposal of Application Notice has been submitted by Moulsdale Properties to Loch Lomond and the Trossachs Planning Department.

“David Moulsdale, owner of Moulsdale Properties, has had a home in Tarbet for over 20 years and has many close connections with the area.

“He has supported numerous local projects including the Three Villages Community Hall Project and Ardroy Outdoor Education Centre, as well as providing funding to the Friends of Loch Lomond.

“With his close affiliation to Loch Lomond and the Trossachs, any development undertaken by Mr Moulsdale would be done so sensitively and in keeping with the heritage and culture of the much-loved area.

“Moulsdale Properties will work in close partnership with the National Park and local residents will be consulted to ensure that any development will only serve to benefit the community.

“The plans are at a very early stage but we intend to be transparent throughout the process.”

The Tarbet proposals are the latest in a spate of tourist developments mooted for West Loch Lomond or nearby Loch Long in recent months.

Plans were unveiled for housing, shops and a visitor centre in Arrochar in June, while the National Park Authority is set to decide on the fate of the proposed Lomond Banks development in Balloch on September 24.

Source: Lochside Press

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