By Democrat reporter
Green MSP Ross Greer is to lead a debate in the Scottish Parliament next week on the future of Balloch and Loch Lomond following the withdrawal of Flamingo Land’s controversial resort plans.
The members debate is scheduled for Tuesday 5th November at 5pm and will allow MSPs to discuss a range of issues related to the Flamingo Land plans, the Save Loch Lomond campaign, the expressions of interest in a community buyouts and alternative ideas for the land in question. The debate will end with a response from a Scottish Government minister.
The motion welcomes the withdrawal of Flamingo Land’s application, congratulates the Save Loch Lomond campaign on their work so far and calls for alternative visions to be explored. It declares that “the future of the site would be best determined by the local community”. While Members’ Debates do not finish with a vote, the discussion will give MSPs an opportunity to have their say and require the Scottish Government to address concerns.
Ross Greer, Scottish Green MSP for the West of Scotland, who led the campaign against Flamingo Land said: “I’m delighted to have secured parliamentary time to discuss the future of Balloch and Loch Lomond. It was clear at our community meeting last week that local residents are bursting with alternative ideas for the site which would preserve its natural beauty, protect wildlife and support the local economy. There’s a real appetite for making Loch Lomond a centre for eco-tourism in particular and Balloch can play a key role in that, especially if the kind of 21st century public transport systems we discussed were also delivered.
“This debate will be an opportunity to thank the Save Loch Lomond campaign and local residents for their work holding off Flamingo Land and to highlight the exclusive agreement the company still has on purchasing rights for the West Riverside and Drumkinnon Woods. I look forward to asking the Scottish Government to respond to our concerns about that agreement in particular and to recognise the community’s desire that any development should benefit the local area, not a company based hundreds of miles away.”