Answers sought over ‘unsightly’ overgrown Methilhill land

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COUNCILLORS have called for answers on why an unused piece of land in Methilhill has been allowed to grow overgrown and undeveloped.

At a meeting of Fife Council’s Levenmouth area committee, a previously agreed planning application to build houses on the land adjacent to Chemiss Road, near to the primary school, resurfaced.

Despite being approved in 2009, the building work has never started as the legal agreement was not concluded, meaning the land has become overgrown and surrounded by security fences.

This has become a bone of contention with some councillors, who want answers on what is expected to happen next.

Councillor David Alexander said: “This is something that we’re going to have to look at again; it’s a site that we all want to see developed.

“At the time they (the applicant) were being asked for £2400 per house and around £1200 per flat for education contributions, so I doubt very much that the cost was a killer in this one.”

The one hectare site is considered to contain some unstable ground conditions because of old shallow mine workings.

Historically, the area is known to have old mine workings below and it previously homed a row of miners’ cottages which sat facing the main street.

These were demolished some time ago.

Councillor Jim Young added the area was becoming “unsightly” and was a blot on the approach to the local primary.

His feelings were echoed by Councillor Andrew Rodger, who said its positioning in the centre of Methilhill should mean it becomes a priority for a clean-up.

He said: “We can’t just leave it and say there’s nothing we can do.

“We need to know who owns that land and see what can be done to get it developed.”

At the time of the original application in 2009, the proposal asked for permission to build an unspecified amount of properties on the land.

This was agreed, dependant on an education services contribution.