Golf bosses were given the green light to build homes on the course - despite concerns raised by council planning officials.
The committee at Glenbervie Golf Club applied for planning permission to put four homes at Elmview, Stirling Road, near the 17th tee. They said the wooded area was unused and the capital raised by the development could fund community and sporting projects within the club.
Planning officials recommended the proposal should be refused as the site - which lies at a lay-by just off the A9 between Glenbervie and Torwood - was classed as countryside and development would be contrary to policies protecting green areas.
At Falkirk Council planning committee last Thursday, councillors moved to grant the application.
Baillie Billy Buchanan said: “We can grant this application if it is an enabling development, one that will benefit the community more than disadvantage. I think this falls in to the enabling category. The club will be able to do good things with the money from this, help the community and future golfing talent.”
When councillors visited the site earlier this month, John McCabe, the chairman of Glenbervie Golf Club, said they were planning to use the capital to improve the course and to build a training academy to nurture young players.
Alastair Cruickshanks, who lives 10 metres from the proposed development, argued it was not in the local plan and raised concerns about safety, telling councillors he finds up to eight golf balls a week in his garden.
At the planning meeting, Baillie Buchanan proposed that the application should be granted subject to the club addressing Mr Cruickshank’s concerns
He said: “I think the pros outweigh the cons here.”
Councillor Steven Carleschi said the decision should be delayed to allow councillors to get further information.
He also said he was conerned that the application was an outline one and more homes could be added before completion.
He said: “If we are going against the officers’ recommendations, I’d like the matter to be continued for more information. I’d like to be sure it’s the right decision.”
With the vote tied four-four, Baillie Buchanan used his casting vote to back the development.