Constituency MSP, Jackie Baillie, has raised her constituents concerns about the proposal to build a holiday park at West Riverside in Balloch. The planning application, which has been lodged jointly by Flamingo Land and Scottish Enterprise, will see the proposal for a variety of different types of holiday accommodation, including self-catering lodges and residential homes, alongside water-based activities, shops and restaurants.
The planning application, which will be considered by Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, has caused a divide in opinion locally. Jackie raised the issue of the Scottish Government calling in the application for their determination with Minister for Rural Affairs during a session of General Questions in the parliament chamber.
Jackie also asked the Minister whether the sale of land and likely future grant award from Scottish Enterprise to the Lomond Banks development, was a good use of public money. Unfortunately she didn’t receive a response.
“A number of concerns have been raised about the Lomond Banks development locally; from the quality of jobs which the developers say will be created, to the impact on existing business, transport infrastructure and even the local environment.
“I will make my view known in the next few weeks but in the meantime wanted to question whether this proposal represents value for money for the public purse.
“Scottish Enterprise purchased the land for £2million about 20 years ago, they are now telling the public that it is worth just £200,000 which is the price that Flamingoland will pay. Indeed Flamingoland are likely to receive additional public funds in grants from Scottish Enterprise so we may end up paying them to develop in Balloch. Many people remain unconvinced that this is a good use of public money.
“It is also the case that this is a substantial and complex application and I believe, given the involvement of Scottish Enterprise, that the application should be called in for determination by the Scottish Government.”