Concern grows over Glenrothes land sale

Councillor Fiona Grant at Cadham Conservation Area which is under threat as the land is up for sale. Picture by Steven Brown Photography
Councillor Fiona Grant at Cadham Conservation Area which is under threat as the land is up for sale. Picture by Steven Brown Photography

Fears are growing that a sale of land in a Glenrothes suburb could have a huge detrimental impact on a designated conservation area.

That’s the view of North Glenrothes Community Council and a local councillor following the advertising of three pockets of land in Cadham being put up for sale by Glenrothes-based estate agents Slater Hogg and Howison.

Questions have already been asked about who actually owns the 13.8 acares, currently being marketed for offers over £35,000, after it emerged that Fife Council thinks it owns one of the three designated areas known as Gallowbank Plantation.

It’s understood the local authority knew nothing of the sale of land until a Cadham resdent alerted them.

Concerns are growing that the area could be sold to a housing developer thus impacting on what the Council has described as an area of ‘particular architectural or historic value’.

Cadham is one of 48 areas covered by the Planing (Listed Buildings and Conservation areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

Liam Mason, vice chairman of North Glenrothes Community Council, said the potential sale could have serious ramifications for residents.

“There are the questions over how this will impact on Cadham which Fife Council have designated a historical conservation area,” Mr Mason.

“There are also worries that the building of houses on the land will put further pressure on congestion issues already being experienced at the Cadham junction with the A92.

The ownership rights of Gallowbank Plantation land, situated close to the busy junction of Cadham Road and the A92, were signed over by the original owners Tullis Russell to the then Kirkcaldy District Council in 1987.

Council officers are now urgently trying to find out why it has been included in the sale.

Fife Council’s Michael McArdle told the Gazette: “The Council has a title for land at Gallowbank Plantation and we have contacted the company which has advertised land in this area for sale to clarify how the situation has arisen.

“Once we have their comments we will have a better understanding and will be able to take any steps needed to resolve the matter.”

Charles McLean, senior land manager for Slater Hogg and Howison said the relevant search process had indicated that the ownership of the piece of land in question resided with its client.

“We have been contacted by Fife Council and have entered into an open dialogue with them to confirm the ownership rights to the land currently being offered for sale,” said Mr McLean.

“We are working with all parties involved to clarify the situation.”

Councillor Fiona Grant said she was keen to see the ownership issue resolved.

“The two grassed areas in front of Cadham Court are in the conservation area and currently public open space,” said Cllr Grant.

“Any development would be controversial due to additional pressure on the junction with the A92.

“The third piece is currently a woodland and Fife Council’s records indicate that Fife Council is the owner.

“I have asked the Council’s most senior lawyer to investigate.

“The selling agents feel they have done all the checks they should and are co-operating fully to reach an agreed conclusion.“