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West end man’s garden plans scuppered after ‘nuisance’ complaints about fence from Aberdeen neighbours

Meanwhile, a new vehicle rental business could be coming to a patch of wasteland at Dyce.

This week's round-up features a row over a fence in Aberdeen
This week's round-up features a row over a fence in Aberdeen... Image: Google Earth/Roddie Reid (DC Thomson)

A west end man has become embroiled in a spat with Aberdeen neighbours about his fence plans, traders caught out by the city’s LEZ could soon have a new rental option and King Charles is plotting eco improvements at Corgarff…

All these and more feature in this week’s Planning Ahead, our weekly round-up of the latest proposals being pondered across the north-east.

Every week we bring readers a selection of the most interesting applications submitted to our councils to form changes big and small in our communities.

We start with plans for that new vehicle rental site at Dyce, which could be coming at just the right time for some motorists…

Dyce car rental plans for demolished Wood group site

A patch of wasteland just beside Aberdeen International Airport could finally be in for a new lease of life after lying vacant for years.

The site of the former Wellheads Complex is on the corner of Wellheads Road and Wellheads Way.

About three years ago, following years of dwindling demand for such buildings, the office complex was reduced to rubble and the site was advertised as “an opportunity for development”.

The site on the outskirts of the city. Image: Ben Hendry/DC Thomson

Now, Stirling-based Enterprise Flex-E Rent is eyeing up the spot.

The company wants to build a rental facility for commercial vehicles, with offices, servicing and wash bays and EV charging points.

It comes as Enterprise’s business expands, with a “flexible approach” allowing firms to rapidly increase their fleet whenever needed.

In recent years, it has become the UK and Ireland’s “largest and most diverse commercial vehicle rental business”.

The company may be in demand now that LEZ restrictions have come into force in Aberdeen, restricting the type of vehicle that can enter some city centre streets.

Its website boasts of its “large selection” of compliant vehicles.

The site in question. Image: Ben Hendry/DC Thomson

Worried about Aberdeen’s LEZ restrictions? Our recent survey of vehicles along the Denburn actually found a fairly small minority passing by were affected.

Britannia Hotel outdoor area approved – to neighbours’ dismay

A few miles away, planners have rubber-stamped changes at Aberdeen’s Britannia Hotel – despite complaints from neighbours.

The retrospective proposals for a new outdoor dining area attracted a furious backlash when submitted earlier this year.

Bucksburn’s Britannia Hotel. Image: Darrell Benns/DC Thomson

In February, Planning Ahead documented irate complaints about noise and anti-social behaviour, and even concerns about the addition “worsening a rat problem”.

But council officials have now weighed in on the proposal for the area at the junction of Malcolm Road and Old Meldrum Road, which was destroyed in a 2016 blaze.

Planning chiefs have given it the go-ahead as long as it closes by 10pm every night, and no loud music is played.

The hotel in Bucksburn. Image: Darrell Benns/DC Thomson

What about the neighbours’ complaints?

Aberdeen City Council accepts the outdoor area “would have some impact on residential amenity”.

But officials doubt it would be a “significant” one.

The area in question was ruined in a fire. Image: Kath Flannery/DC Thomson

Any noise complaints, they add, would be investigated if reported.

As for the rodent fears, they were deemed immaterial to the matter at hand.

New farm shop planned for Aberdeenshire countryside

Proposals for a new farm shop at St Katherine’s, between Oldmeldrum and Fyvie, have been submitted to Aberdeenshire Council.

Here is where the farm shop will be built. Image: Chloe Moir

The proposal has been put forward by Chloe Moir, of Rosebrae, who wants to sell home grown vegetables and baking from the site.

The agricultural building is presently used for storage.

Ellon catering van seeks permanent spot

Meanwhile, in Ellon, Omer Yagmur wants permission to park his food van in place permanently at 77 Station Road.

The location on Station Road. Image: Google Maps

The spot is next to Ellon Car Clinic.

Mr Yagmur’s Ythan Delight Grill business, which sells Turkish street food, is presently next to the Floral Request shop on Ythan Terrace.

Hall to become haven when winter storms strike north-east

The odd spot of wind, rain or even hail isn’t unknown during Scottish summers, and a wet weekend just past saw the cancellation of Aberdeen Highland Games.

But we at least are usually given a reprieve from the fierce storms that have become increasingly common across recent winters.

Communities left shaken by chaotic conditions have been forced to adapt – and to plan for the worst.

Now, Donside villagers want to equip Tullynessle Hall for any severe storms this coming winter.

Crew buys generator in preparation

The association that runs the complex near Alford say they would “like to become a reliance hub for the community”.

This way, the hall could become a haven “in times of emergency when for example, there are extensive power outages”.

Tullynessle Hall. Image: Google Maps

The volunteers have purchased a generator large enough to run the hall at full capacity, to be used for cooking and heating.

It has already been put in, and retrospective permission is now being sought for its installation there.

Communities rallied to provide support for those cut off by the storms in recent years. Image: DC Thomson

Eco-friendly plans at estate owned by royals near Balmoral

Deeper into Donside, King Charles wants to expand a peatland restoration scheme.

The Delnadamph Estate, north of Balmoral, was bought by the late Queen for grouse shooting in the 1970s and gifted to Charles upon his marriage to Princess Diana.

King Charles at Loonach Highland Games.
King Charles at the nearby Lonach Highland Games last summer. Image: Denny Andonova.

The 6,700 expanse near Corgarff has been the site of a rather unusual spot of rural development…

When its Delnadamph Lodge fell into disrepair, Charles had it torn down. He and Camilla then built a holiday home at the site 15 years ago.

The historic lodge seen here in 1981. Image: DC Thomson

But these new plans are focussed on improving more than just the monarch’s own environment.

The land is now being used to help tackle climate change, as hundreds acres of peatland damaged by decades of field sports are repaired.

The estate with Corgarff Castle in the foreground. Image: Kami Thomson/DC Thomson

Papers explain that Scottish peatlands store more than a billion tonnes of carbon, and are releasing this into the atmosphere.

Project leaders say their “degradation needs to be halted”.

These latest plans, for a second phase of peatland restoration work, have been submitted by Balmoral factor Richard Gledson.

Balmoral’s long-serving factor Mr Gledson oversaw arrangements at the Royal Deeside castle when Her Majesty died in 2022, among many other duties over the years. Image: Kami Thomson/DC Thomson

Earlier this year, it emerged that the peatland restoration scheme at the small estate had secured £650,000 in public funding.

A contract issued for the work suggested it could last from this summer until 2026, though the overall project will continue beyond that.

A digger at the estate during an earlier phase of work. Image: Bidwells

Is anyone against it?

However, nature experts have warned this could have an impact on amorous birds of prey…

A golden eagle.
Scotland is home to some spectacular wildlife, such as this golden eagle, which needs to be protected. Image: Mark Hamblin/PA Wire

Nature Scot say there is “potential for breeding golden eagles to be disturbed”, which could therefore impact the population of the protected species.

They’ve asked that work be carried out around the February-August breeding season.

Plans for huge new Milltimber home

Last week, Planning Ahead documented proposals to do up an old mansion in Milltimber.

And elsewhere in the leafy suburb, applicant Euan Davidson has lodged blueprints for a huge new property.

He wants to build a four-bedroom home off North Deeside Road, on land opposite Oldfold Farmhouse.

Here is how the big new house would look. Image: Fiddes architects
Another view of the huge house. Image: Fiddes architects

Documents prepared by Fiddes architects describe the area as the “prestigious Dee valley”.

The site was previously used as a paddock, and construction access into the Oldfold housing development.

A look inside. Image: Fiddes architects
Would you like to live in a house like this? Image: Fiddes architects

The property would ne formed to “maximise the natural sunlight throughout the day”.

It would be insulated to reduce heat loss, with an air source heating system and underfloor heating.

Fence plan rejected in Aberdeen’s west end after neighbour row

Neighbours have become embroiled in a spat over changes to a garden on Aberdeen’s Cromwell Road.

The 51 Cromwell Road property was sold for £190,000 in January 2023.

The street in Aberdeen. Image: DC Thomson

New arrival on the street, which is just opposite the Harlaw playing fields, Barrie Milne set out on some home improvements once he moved in.

What changes were made?

This included plans for a new fence and gates to the rear of the ground floor flat.

He also knocked down a wall to make space to park his car in what was an area of the garden, with letters later sent to the council explaining that problems in the “congested” area meant he was often having to leave his car far from the address.

Here is how the back garden used to look. Image: Google Maps
Here is how the rear area has been changed. The larger area has been altered by Mr Milne. Image: DC Thomson

It was argued that, in future, this could allow for the charging of electric vehicles too.

Work on the changes between Mr Milne’s and the property next door was launched.

However, permission was not sought first and neighbours pleaded for the project to be stopped in its tracks.

What do the locals say amid Aberdeen fence row?

Susan Cochran, who lives next door at 53 Cromwell Road, argued that the fence suggested “restricts access” to her rear stairs, which are used to access the top floor flat.

She also claims the sound of tyres crunching over chuckies to get parked at the spot will create “noise pollution” and the 2m fence would “restrict light” into her part of the garden.

What do you think of the Aberdeen west end fence row? Image: DC Thomson

Clive Birse, who lives nearby at number 61, also objected.

He wrote: “Mr Milne moved into 51 Cromwell Road last summer and promptly set about demolishing the back granite boundary wall, leaving the property wide open to this day with not even temporary fencing in place.

“I have resided here for 31 years and many garages and car ports have been built to the rear of the properties in Cromwell Road.

“They have all been tastefully done. The plans for 51 include industrial looking gates.”

Walking through garden would be ‘like entering a prison yard’

Mr Birse added: “Remember it is a garden to be used and enjoyed by both properties, not a car park.”

The long-term resident labelled the new fencing planned as “unsightly”, and argued it would mean the neighbour has “no sunshine in their area of garden”.

Mr Birse concluded: “The upstairs neighbour getting in via the side access will be like entering a prison along paths with 2m walls enclosing it.”

The plans have caused friction on Cromwell Road. Image: DC Thomson

Neighbour Norma Yule called the fence “unnecessarily high”, and Queens Cross and Harlaw Community Council later weighed in with its disapproval too.

The group urged the council to refuse the retrospective application, agreeing with the various concerns raised by those in the area.

Aberdeen fence row applicant fires back over ‘nuisance complaints’

Having seen the objections, Mr Milne felt the need to explain his side in a further letter to the council.

He argued that the part of the garden which neighbours at 53 are complaining about is used for storage rather than leisure purposes.

The letter adds: “It would be absurd to call the rear garden of the property ‘shared’ as the small patch of land owned by the neighbours is miniscule.”

Instead, he suggests the neighbour is unhappy at “no longer having free access to the
exclusive garden ground”.

Neighbours are at odds over the plans. Image: DC Thomson

Reflecting on the various complaints, Mr Milne states: “It is submitted that the representations objecting to the development are not based on facts, but are purely nuisance.”

What did the council decide on Aberdeen fence row?

In a lengthy report, council officials agreed the new boundary was “unsuitable”, and “not in keeping with the character and appearance of the street”.

This came after a visit to the site.

The disputed area is along Cromwell Gardens, to the rear of Cromwell Road. Image: DC Thomson

Do you think the council made the right decision? Let us know in our comments section below

Following the “prison yard” objection from Mr Birse, they agreed that the new fence did create a “tunnelling effect of relatively high-level enclosures on either side of the
narrow private garden area”.

This, they said, would result in adverse overshadowing. Perhaps a cautionary tale for anyone thinking of garden improvements this summer…

You can see this week’s plans here:

Dyce car rental site

Britannia Hotel changes approved

Farm shop plans

Ellon catering van

Tullynessle generator 

Delnadamph peatland project

New Milltimber home

Aberdeen fence row application