As we reported earlier, Hanson decided to walk away from this lease. The community council also found out just before our last meeting that, despite the clear decision of Stirling Council on 11th October 2012 to issue a Suspension Order for the planning permission, officials at Stirling Council took it upon themselves to delay issuing the Order until the landowner’s “delicate” negotiations with his contractor were complete.
We think these officials clearly overstepped their power, and it needed the help of our local Councillors to ensure that the Order was issued.
So it looks as if the Order is now on its way to the Scottish Government where hopefully it will be ratified.
However the Suspension Order will not stop the landowner and his new contractor submitting an application to reactivate the quarry, and we are convinced this application will be submitted sooner rather than later.
The only plus for the community is that this time, unlike the rubber stamp “Review” of 2002, they will have to consider all the environmental issues. What can we as a community do about it? If we don’t present a strong case to preserve our environment, then the noise and dust of the quarry and the roaring of the lorries past our local schools will soon be a reality.
Last month, at a Save Gillies Hill meeting, it was decided to continue with efforts to gather information that will strengthen the case, possibly em- ploying a planning or environmental consultant to highlight its strengths and weaknesses.
Your Community Council fully supports this action. If you have anything to add to the background knowledge of ecology, heritage, recreation etc of the area, which we have built up over the years, or if you are familiar with the planning procedures which we will have to navigate through, or know someone who does, then let us know as soon as possible.
We will have just one chance to save our environment for ourselves and future generations.