Councillors welcome community group funding applications

A COMMUNITY led creche in Ellon is set to benefit from a significant cash injection, after approval was given by councillors at Formartine Area Committee.

Ellon Creche Mums, set up following the demise of the Community Centre facility, received a promise of up to £1000 from the Area Top-up Budget after being praised by councillors as an example of a community-led project responding to the impact of spending cuts.

The town’s Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme also stands to benefit, after £388 was agreed by councillors.

Speaking about the scheme, Cllr Allan Hendry said: “The Duke of Edinburgh Award is an excellent initiative, and I have no problem supporting this allocation.”

Cllr Rob Merson agreed, saying: “For all the small amount asked for, a lot of good will come from it.”

Councillors then took evidence on the capacity of the area’s sheltered housing to cope with the storage of mobility scooters. Housing Service plans to place restrictions on the devices were rejected by councillors as being ‘too rigid’, limiting residents in the area’s sheltered housing complexes to particular models of scooter. Service spokesman Andrew White agreed that the service would look again at the proposals, to see if a more flexible solution could be found.

Local members also decided on a number of planning issues, including the discovery that a mis-allocation had been made in the draft Local Development Plan which would have allowed severe over-development of one site in Udny Green, which had mistakenly been earmarked for 45 houses rather than 30. Planners agreed that councillors could take other steps to mitigate the problem short of re-publishing the entire Local Development Plan, which could have taken up to a full year.

Two new wind turbines came before councillors, bringing re-iterated fears that the region is becoming ‘saturated’ by the developments. Councillors granted approval for one turbine, however deferred a decision on the other at St Katherines’, following a representations from neighbour Ian Doyle who claimed that similar extant devices were severely impacting his quality of life, and that their numbers left him “starting to feel like Custer at his last stand.”

Councillor refused permission for a house at High Town, Collieston, which is already going through a Scottish Government appeals process, on the grounds that the designs were unsympathetic to buildings in the vicinity.