Residents have hit out at proposals for a major housing development on green belt near the Wallace Monument in Stirling saying new buildings would block views for future generations of the world-famous structure.
Proposals for a the 50-acre site on farmland at Craigmill and Powis Mains Steading featuring 165 housing units, including flats and a ‘social village’ directly under the Abbey Craig, home to the monument, have been submitted to Stirling Council.
Paul McDonald, spokesman for residents at nearby Craigmill, between Causewayhead and Blairlogie, said that they had found out ‘by chance’ about the proposed scheme.
“A resident was browsing online last week and found the proposals.
“We wrote to Stirling Council to ask for clarifications on a number of points. The council is already fully aware of significant issues surrounding the area,’ said Mr McDonald.
“We’re doing this primarily out of a sense of history and pride of where we live.
“It’s going to remove a view you’d never get back. Fifty per cent of the view from the Wallace Monument, if not more, is already built on. This is the last remaining section of view out to the Ochils.”
He added: “We spoke to council planners. They said they had outlined reasons to the developer’s agent why the proposals could be difficult.”
The National Wallace Monument, on the Abbey Craig, is a major tourist attraction visited by more than 100,000 people each year.
The 67-metre high sandstone tower marks the location of William Wallace’s Scottish forces before the Battle of Stirling Bridge in September 1297 and overlooks the battlefield. The tower, which holds Wallace’s sword, was completed in 1869 following a fundraising campaign.
The battle was part of the Scottish Wars of Independence and resulted in victory for Wallace and his men against the English and Edward I.
A spokesman for Stirling Council said: “No application has been submitted in relation to this proposed development.
“Developments of this nature have to go through a formal process which would involve engagement with the local community prior to any application being submitted.
“It would be inappropriate for the council to comment on such an application formally until it had come before the planning and regulations panel.”