Pathhead council flats approved despite objections

Midlothian Council's HQ in Dalkeith.
Midlothian Council's HQ in Dalkeith.

Claims 10 new council flats on a former garage site will enhance a village were described as “nonsense” by one local resident who feared he would be left unable to leave his home.

The £1.32 million plans by Midlothian Council for the land, which was once home to a row of lock-ups, faced criticism from local residents.

One warned he was disabled and needed to access his home through his back garden, but the new flats will block his access.

He told the council: “If this building proposal was to go ahead I would be unable to leave my home.”

Another resident whose back garden would be affected by the new flats, said: “I have disabled parents who can only visit using my back access. If the housing development was to go ahead would I lose access to my back garden, therefore making it impossible for my parents to visit?”

However in a planning officer’s report on the plans for the site on Crichton Avenue, Pathhead, it is noted that “rights of access to properties are a private legal matter between the parties involved and are not a material planning consideration”.

And it says the access some residents use to go into their homes from the back gardens is “informal”.

Concerns were also raised by local residents about the loss of the site itself, which is used by children and young people as a play area and as a drop-off point for parents taking their youngster to the neighbouring Tynewater Primary School.

They said the local park was used at weekends for football leaving children with nowhere else to play.

Despite concerns planning permission has been granted for the flats and the council this week applied for a building warrant to allow construction to begin.