Plans for Fife farm visitor centre refused

Balbuthie Farm was to be opened up to visitors.
Balbuthie Farm was to be opened up to visitors.

The trustees of Fife farm have criticised Fife Council for rejecting plans to create a new visitor centre.

The Cameron Trustees of Balbuthie Farm, Kilconquhar, had wanted to open up the 350-acre farm, giving the public the chance to visit and see how their food is produced.

The visitor centre would also have housed two rare steam locomotives, the Class A4 ‘Union of South Africa’ and Class K4 ‘The Great Marquess’, both of which are owned by John Cameron.

Other railway ephemera would be on display in the visitor centre as well.

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However, Fife Council rejected the plans, noting that the proposed development would “create an unacceptable development in the countryside and would result in the loss of prime agricultural land”.

The refusal also states that the design of the proposed development is “not in keeping with the surrounding countryside”.

Finlay Clark, a spokesman for the trustees, said: “It is deeply regretted that Fife Council have sought to reject an application which has been painstakingly put together and submitted in the belief that a full and compliant proposal had been lodged.

“It is extremely disconcerting that a project which requires no public funding and which would stimulate economic activity and six permanent jobs, as well as providing a free educational and research facility and tourist facilities has been rejected.”

Mr Clark added that the trustees would take careful stock of the situation.