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Plans for caravan site for North Coast 500 visitors

Noss Head lighthouse (Lighthouse Keeper's Cottage website)

A Dunbartonshire man has lodged plans to operate a caravan site near John O’Groats to cash in on the unmet demand for stop-over sites by North Coast 500 visitors.

Andrew Forrest, from Lennoxtown, has earmarked the development on part of a former croft at Parkview, Auckengill, just off the A99 north of Wick.

He plans to accommodate up to 15 caravans and campervans as well as building a new bungalow where he and his partner would live.

The site would be serviced by electric hook-up points, a toilet/shower block and a waste collection area, as well as an office reception area.

In a written statement backing the planning application, Mr Forrest’s agent, Wick-based David Sutherland said: “The purpose of the site is to fulfil a growing demand for sites close to the NC500 route and in particular encourage the responsible use of regulated and well-maintained locations.

“These help alleviate the pressure on land and in particular unauthorised stops on roadsides and open land.”

He said that with ongoing Covid restrictions and the popularity of the route, it is expected that demand will rise in this area.

Mr Sutherland said in a spot sample, more than 50 campervans passed through Wick town centre between 11am and noon one day last month.

The site would have scenic views of Sinclair’s Bay and Noss Head while it is planned to plant trees and bushes for screening and to increase wildlife.

If planning consent is given, Mr Forrest and his partner intend to live in a caravan until their house is built.

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