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Community councils may join forces to oppose ‘injustices’  

Credit:  Cumnock Chronicle | 28 Aug 2014 | www.cumnockchronicle.com ~~

Two community councils are set to join forces in a bid to fight ‘injustices’ served on them by Holyrood.

Muirkirk and Dalmellington CCs have both seen the Scottish Government ignore them, along with East Ayrshire Council, when controverially rubber-stamping plans for developments in both villages.

While it’s a major quarry in Muirkirk, it’s wind farms for their counterparts in Dalmellington.

And this week it emerged that the two bodies hope to come together to send a strong statement to the ministers who ignored their wishes when approving two major developments.

Ian Smith, chair of Muirkirk Community Council, said: “We hope to set up an alliance with our counterparts in Dalmellington as we feel very strongly on this.

“It’s happened twice – once to each area – that our views have been ignored. The local authority have at least listened to us but when it’s come to the Scottish Executive we’ve been completely ignored.

“What kind of democracy is that? It’s an injustice. Hopefully we can come together with a joint statement just to let them know how strongly we feel about this.”

Memnbers of Muirkirk Community Council were left fuming when Scottish Ministers approved plans by Hillhouse Quarry Group to dig four million tonnes of sand and gravel out of a site near the village.

In a planning application submitted to East Ayrshire Council, Hillhouse said they were hoping to mine a 40.56 hectare site for up to 18 years – aiming to extract around 300,000 tonnes every year.

While in Dalmellington, the Scottish Government approved plans for a 23-turbine windfarm in Dersalloch, near to Dalmellington. in July.

That was despite hundreds of objections and an official objection by East Ayrshire Council.

Rae Murphy, chair of Dalmellington Community Council, said: “We would certainly welcome a collobration with Muirkirk and any other community council that wanted to stand with us against these decision.

“I’ve said all along that Dalmellington will fight wind farm developments in the town.”

Source:  Cumnock Chronicle | 28 Aug 2014 | www.cumnockchronicle.com

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