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8 Jun 2018

Concerns over new threat to Culloden Conservation Zone

Culloden Battlefield
The National Trust for Scotland is fighting to protect Culloden from the threat of yet another development in the area.

The Trust has submitted a formal objection to Highland Council over a proposed development at TreeTop Stables, Faebuie, Culloden Moor.

The objection was made by the National Trust for Scotland in the light of conservation zone status being applied by Highland Council to the wider historic battlefield of Culloden. Only the ‘core’ area of the battlefield is owned by the Trust.

This comes just days after another heavily opposed development was given the go-ahead at Viewhill Farm in the area.

This protective ‘zone’ was put in place after the Scottish Reporter overturned a decision by Highland Council to refuse planning permission for the luxury housing development at Viewhill Farm.

The new proposal is to convert the existing TreeTop equestrian centre, which has little intrusive impact, to construct holiday, leisure and hospitality facilities, including 13 lodges, a café/shop, reception building, laundry and restaurant.

Diarmid Hearns, the Trust’s Head of Policy, said:

‘This will be the first big test of the council’s initiative to try and protect what remains of the historic battlefield and its setting through a conservation zone.

‘The zone could not be applied retrospectively to the Viewhill housing development but we hope that it will prevent further unsympathetic encroachment on this pivotal site for Scotland’s story.

‘Our great concern about Viewhill is that it would set a precedent that developers could exploit, leading to the absolute loss over time of an historic landscape.

‘If conservation zone status does not prevent this development, it confirms our opinion that Scotland’s planning laws must be completely overhauled if we are to have a fair chance of protecting places that our vital to our heritage and in themselves intrinsic to our tourism economy.’

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