Traveller site ‘not suitable’

Councillor John McLuckie
Councillor John McLuckie

Braes councillors took their concerns about a new Traveller site to a Falkirk Council planning meeting on Tuesday.

Councillors James Kerr and John McLuckie were invited to address the committee to detail their worries about using a vacant site near Church Road, California, as a private and permanent Gypsy/Traveller pitch, for one static caravan and one tourer.

The issues they wanted to highlight included problems with access for vehicles, potential flooding and historic coalmining in the area.

There were also concerns about an unauthorised septic tank that is currently in use.

Councillor McLuckie stressed that he was not opposed to Traveller sites in general but he had specific concerns about this site.

“I am not against Gypsy/Traveller sites!” he said. “I have supported every one of them in the past 12 years.”

The councillors asked members of the planning committee to visit the site, previously associated with Wesleymount Farm, so they could see the narrow road for themselves and hear more about people’s concerns.

Officers were asked to look carefully at the threat of flooding and report back to the committee.

The planning application seeks to allow hard standing and car parking, new fencing, gates and shed, some of which is retrospective.

Members agreed to visit the site and hear residents’ concerns as well as officers’ reports.