Pathway onto Grace StreetYesterday on the 8th July 2010 a small protest was held against Lomond Homes decision to create a pathway for the New Farm Vale residents going into Grace Street, a privately owned road. Residents from Grace Street had a sit down protest at the pathway, as they are angered the pathway is being built onto their privately owned road.

The decision to locate the pathway, was decided by the Cowdenbeath Area Committee at a “special meeting”, and since this is a planning application, it is our opinion that the decision should have been made at the usual “public” committee meeting.

Grace Street - Private RoadResidents had called for representatives of the Lochgelly Community Council and the Lochgelly Community Development Forum to witness the development, as some local residents believe that the decision to build the pathway onto Grace Street is wrong due to private ownership and was not transparent. As far as we are aware, no planning application was submitted to the Community Council.

Police were eventually called to the site to try and calm down the protesters and resolve the situation, but local residents are still angry at the decision and building of the pathway.

New Farm Vale, Plight of Residents

Pathway onto Grace StreetThe residents and children of the New Farm Vale development have been forced to walk a very busy road to be able to get into Lochgelly and definitely need an easier access to the town and local facilities.

This has been an issue since the development was first launched, and they have every right to be afforded access to the town, to allow better integration with the rest of the town, and most importantly to allow their children to access the town on a safer path.

Grace Street, Plight of Residents

Grace Street is a privately owned road and they feel that the peacefulness of their road is now shattered as the majority of residents will be walking through their quiet and private street. They also feel the decision to site the pathway onto their street is a breach in planning regulations and believe there is no transparency in the decision to approve the planning and construction of the path.

Lomond Homes

Original Pathway now AbandonedLomond Homes are responsible for the development of New Farm Vales, and originally had planned a walkway that connects to the bottom of the public park. This pathway they did partially build, which now leads to a dead-end as seen in our photograph on the left.

The reason we heard that this pathway was not completed, was that Lomond Homes could not afford the £30,000.00 bill to complete this pathway. If true, this seems a very weak reason considering the profits from the sale of 1 home should be enough to build this pathway, and if local rumours are true, Lomond Homes have already invested a significant amount of money into Lochgelly Golf Course which has been rumoured to be several hundred thousand.

Lomond Homes were also critised at the beginning of this development for supposedly creating an illegal site access road into the plant when development first began.

The Future

Lomond Homes New Farm ValeWe do not know if this pathway will be allowed to remain in its current location, but we do know the residents have a right to have a safe walkway that connects them to Lochgelly. Should Lomond Homes be forced to pay the £30,000.00 to complete the original pathway that was in the original plans? Or do we allow a developer to chop and change plans as it fits their needs, at the cost to local residents, with no proper consultations?

We would like to get feedback from both sides of the fence, if you are a resident of Grace Street, or New Farm Vales, why not comment below and let us know how you feel about this recent development, or how you feel it was handled by Lomond Homes.

Please leave any comments in the box below, or you can discuss this topic with other in our forum (no registration required)

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8 Comments

  1. Crabbit

    July 10, 2010 at 9:44 am

    What a pity this has all been handled so badly. As a resident of NFV I just wanted to let the people of Grace street know that I totally understand their concerns. I also understand how frustrating it has been for residents of NFV to live without a pathway for so long.

    For several months tenants of the housing association and some home owners have been pursuing this path, and they have every right to. However.

    The petition (poorly worded with just a vague reference to a path being laid ‘somewhere’) only came to my door after some work had already begun.

    We chose not to sign and gave our reasons.

    Meetings re this were closed, we were never invited to any and never given any written notification of any. We had no voice either Grace Street.

    Where has the consultation been with Fife Council? Who has been ‘our voice’ in this? How many names were collected on this petition? There were, approx a dozen there when I saw it? How many residents in NFV and Grace street ever had their door knocked on to discuss this? No one from the council ever approached me.

    What a shame that things have come to this and so much distress has been caused to residents on both sides of this poorly executed decision.

    Well that’s my tuppence worth.

    Reply

  2. Lochgelly

    July 12, 2010 at 11:44 am

    Thank you for your comment. We had a couple of volunteers down at NFV on Thursdday night and they mentioned that the residents they spoke with all understood the position of Grace Street and sympathised with them as well.

    NFV definitely needs a pathway for easier access to the town. I don’t think there will be any disagreements there.

    We are hoping that the current situation does not end up being NFV vs Grace Street and vice versa.

    Instead, the consultation and planning process should be looked at more closely to ensure there is transparency in the decision and all residents were consulted fairly.

    Reply

  3. Anonymous

    July 12, 2010 at 4:34 pm

    I was disgraced by the workers who were swearing at us all and even telling the photographer from the courier to **** off. We were also being filmed by someone and I can only assume it was Lomond Homes.

    Reply

  4. Lochgelly

    July 13, 2010 at 9:56 am

    We have edited the above comment in line with our Terms and Conditions:

    Comments Censorship:
    WE DO NOT CENSOR COMMENTS, we may occasionally edits comments if offensive language is used, but in that case we will only remove or choose a more suitable word in it’s place. If we do edit a comment, we will clearly mark what has been edited and the reasons why.

    Reply

  5. Concerned Resident

    July 26, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    It is with delight to hear a pathway to Lochgelly town is now available to those who need it.
    It has been located in a safer area for the immediate residents.
    The community police have expressed concerns about the proposed original position of the pathway, as it could encourage anti social behaviour.
    As a resident of NFV I find Lomond Homes very helpful and have never heard abuse verbally or otherwise.

    Reply

  6. Lochgelly

    July 27, 2010 at 8:55 pm

    There is several people that witnessed the verbal abuse from the workers that were creating the pathway.

    Witnesses include the Photographer from the Courier, Community Councillors, Lochgelly Community Development Forum, and Grace Street residents.

    We have several people that have verified that the staff developing the pathway were verbally abusive.

    Reply

  7. chbeveridge

    November 2, 2012 at 8:40 pm

    I always thought the residents of Grace Street were being a bit unreasonable. Why should they be the only street in Lochgelly that nobody can walk or drive through? Note, I’m not hiding behind a ‘guest’ log on. Well now I see where the path will come out. A row of trees have been chopped down at the edge of the woods, and the path comes right out onto the edge of the park. I sincerely hope the path extends to the first path of the park and is not just a muddy track. Now that the first trees have been cut down – will it just be a matter of time before they all go for houses nobody from Lochgelly can afford. Hopefully that wouldn’t work as these houses would have too good a view of Mossmoran and it’s regular antics.

    Reply

    • Lochgelly

      November 3, 2012 at 12:00 pm

      As far as we are aware the path should be completed properly with proper asphalt tarmacadam. It appears that the path construction was started shortly before Lomond Homes were to appear before one of the Area Committees to ask for the Section 75 Agreement to be changed and possibly delayed. At the same time, prior to the meeting residents at Grace Street were informed that the roads were to be completed. This happened to a housing estate up at Kenly who are facing similar situations to Grace Street residents.

      Fife Council did not agree to any changes or delay to the Section 75 Agreement, and work by Lomond Home appear to have stopped after their requests were refused. Regarding the planned housing estate at the Avenues, we have unconfirmed reports that Lomond are trying to sell the land.

      Reply

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