RESIDENTS battling against plans to build more than 100 homes on treasured greenspace in Neilston have urged the community council to oppose the development.

Dawn Homes have applied for planning permission to build 149 houses and nine flats on land at Kirkton Road.

At their most recent meeting, members of Neilston Community Council were joined by campaigners from the ‘No to Kirkton Road Development’ group, who urged them to submit an objection to the application.

Rachel Ferguson, of Craighall Quadrant, explained the objections of the group, which was formed by people who regularly use the field for dog walking, horse riding and nature hikes.

READ MORE: Developer's plan to build 149 homes near Neilston branded 'disappointing'

She said: “What very little benefit this plan does offer is significantly outweighed by disadvantages that no developer can mitigate.

“We have well above 800 objections from the people of Neilston, which is increasing all the time.

“It’s used on a daily basis by many people, performing an important recreational function different to other greenspaces in Neilston.”

Fellow campaigner Colin McLeish said the main issue for many residents was concern about the impact the development would have on traffic along Kirkton Road.

He added: “They’re proposing to add two junctions to Kirkton Road, which is very narrow, within 200 yards. It’s lunacy.

“In a recent article in the Barrhead News, Dawn Homes said they’d consulted with the council on a roads strategy but I haven’t seen it. Has anyone?

“I also don’t know how the council feels about Dawn Homes advertising the new houses as ‘coming soon’ on their website. Is it a fait accompli or isn’t it? Are we wasting our time?”

Responding to a suggestion that the development is covered in the area’s Local Development Plan, Ms Ferguson said: “The plan is for 78 households post-2025 in a phased process and it’s only a potential requirement. 

“It’s not required for housing stock. Its status in the plan should not be over-emphasised.”
Councillor Paul O’Kane, also in attendance, said there was a possibility the proposals would have to go before the full council rather than the planning committee – something he said he was still trying to ascertain.

He told the meeting: “We need to clarify that because what’s proposed is different from what’s within the local plan, so there is a chance it could go to full council.

“If it doesn’t, planners would have to make a justification to the planning committee about why it is acceptable, in their view.”

Ms Ferguson admitted campaigners face “a tough fight” but insisted they had a good case for the proposals to be refused.

Community councillors said they would be making a representation to East Renfrewshire Council.