Reindeer to join protest over homes on meadow

REINDEER will be roped in to help a protest against plans to build on a green space in Glasgow's West End.

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Campaigners fighting to stop a developer from building 90 townhouses, mews and flats on former playing fields known as North Kelvin Meadow are to hold a demonstration at their Christmas event next Friday.

It is expected to attract about 1500 people.

They are angry at a move by New City Vision, which formally submitted its planning application at the end of last month to build on the site between Clouston, Sanda and Kelbourne streets.

Residents now have until January 1 to lodge objections to the plans.

As previously reported in the Evening Times, NCV had delayed publicly unveiling the plans because they were being updated, despite the company lodging its application with the council in May.

Douglas Peacock, 47, chairman of Save The North Kelvin Meadow, which was launched in 2008, said: "We are astonished the plans have gone in.

"When you have been doing something for four years you expect people to listen.

"A lot of things are being done on the land. We have so many events and it is so well used.

"We are going to be getting everyone to write objection letters.

"There is a very short space of time and it is a crazy time during Christmas and New Year, but we need people to get involved."

The protesters are planning a march against the plans.

The group has arranged for six reindeer to come down from the Cairngorms for the family event.

Campaigner Emily Cutts, 34, said: "There will be about 1500 people at our event. We have banners and will be using them for the parade."

The campaigners have also been trying to reclassify the use of the land from a residential status to a green space by writing to the city council's planning department.

A change of classification would not be implemented until 2014 during City Plan Three. The city is currently on City Plan Two.

Mr Peacock said: "We feel New City Vision has beaten us to the punch by putting this planning application in.

"We want to make this a green space officially.

"New City Vision is describing this place as a gap site, as a place of disrepair.

"But we have been using this space for many, many years and it is not a place in disrepair. It is flourishing.

"Their claims are nonsense."

New City Vision is arguing that if it is granted planning consent, it will build play space and upgrade the nearby North Kelvinside pitches on completion.

The company did not respond to calls from the Evening Times.

A city council spokesman said the application would be considered in due course.

The reindeer event is from 4-8pm next Friday.

rachel.loxton@ heraldandtimes.co.uk

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