Future remains uncertain for of one of Fife’s most historic buildings

The future of Leslie House, the A-listed former home of the Earl of Rothes, remains in the balance.
The future of Leslie House, the A-listed former home of the Earl of Rothes, remains in the balance.

The future of one of Fife’s most historic buildings remains uncertain as deliberations over a controversial planning appeal continue.

The Scottish Government appointed reporter who is to decide whether to grant approval for controversial plans to build 28 luxury homes in the former grounds of Leslie House, was due to make a decision over a month ago but has now requested more information from Fife Council.

The Fife authority rejected Muir Homes’ proposal in August 2015, but the developer appealed that decision.

Fears are that if the application is given the go ahead, it will end any chance of restoring the A-listed former home of the Earl of Rothes, because the plans do not include an ‘enabling development’ plan - a legal clause that requires part funding of the house from profits of the newly built homes.

June Barrie, the council’s managing solicitor for planning and licensing, confirmed that the Scottish Government reporter had reviewed the information submitted by the council, the applicant and the objectors, but now needed more details of the reasons for refusal.

“He has now requested that both Fife Council and the applicant provide more information on the development in relation to Leslie House to help determine whether or not he should be linking the development site to the restoration of Leslie House.

“Our comments will be with the Reporter by the requested deadline of April 29.”

No new date for a final decision has yet been set.