FURY AS DEVELOPER BREAKS PROMISE FOLLOWING SCHEME’S REJECTION
Ravenscraig Community Action Group (RCAG) and politicians from across the political spectrum have today (14th March 2023) slammed a decision by Russell Group to submit a planning appeal to Scottish Ministers for their controversial transport hub, thrown out by North Lanarkshire Council in December 2022.
The controversial plans, opposed by Scottish Labour, Scottish National Party, Scottish Green and Scottish Conservative politicians, were the subject of circa 700 objections to North Lanarkshire Council in 2022. Council planners found that the proposal was wholly incompatible with the Ravenscraig Masterplan, Development Plan, Local Plan and National Planning Frameworks 3 & 4 and the application was rejected resoundingly by fifty-eight councillors from all parties.
Speaking at North Lanarkshire Council’s December’s full council meeting, Russell Group committed not to appeal the decision to Scottish Ministers, stating:
“From a John G Russell perspective we’ve been through this process. We’ve invested a lot of time, and money, and we are looking for an outcome today from this process. We will not be going to appeal. It will be today or not and, if its not, our investment will go to Hillington and our current Coatbridge site.”
With three months to lodge an appeal following a planning determination, Russell Group chose less than 24 hours before the window closed to submit their appeal to Scottish Government, with no engagement with local stakeholders.
Ryan O’Donnell, Chair of the Ravenscraig Community Action Group, said:
“For over two years, North Lanarkshire communities, businesses, councillors, MSPs and MPs from all parties have fought a David and Goliath battle with a private developer hell-bent on casting aside two decades of planned progress and investment.
“Backed by planners, North Lanarkshire Council sent a strong and clear message that Lanarkshire deserved better than flawed proposals that threatened co-ordinated progress, would lock out next steps investment, deprive North Lanarkshire of new and social housing; damage our communities and set a nationally dangerous precedent.
“What’s more, having committed they wouldn’t appeal and rejection, it’s now clear that dirty diesel Russell Group can’t be trusted on their promises or with the future of our communities. We can’t and won’t let a private developer dictate the future of North Lanarkshire and working with communities, our council, businesses and politicians from all parties, we’ll take the fight to Russell Group and again send them packing.”
Join the fight.
For the latest information on the campaign, visit ravenscraig.org