New low energy farmhouse wins backing of Fife councillors
A Fife tree and sheep farm has secured permission to build a new house on its land despite nine objections.
Dunearn Farm's owners can proceed with a new modern home at the entrance to their farm on a track road off of the A909m between Mossmorran and Bunrtisland, after their proposals were accepted by a planning committee.
Applicant Roderick Low, whose family has owned the farm since the 1960s, submitted the application for a "low-energy" farmhouse for his parents to replace the C-listed Dunearn Cottage as both their home and that of the foster children they care for.
A modern, "low maintenance" home is needed for his father, who has long-term medical issues, which would enable Low to live in the main farmhouse continue running the business.
Agents acting for the family also said the extra dwelling would act as a deterrent to thieves, who have stolen fencing and quad bikes in the past.
One storey tall, the home will be covered with black and natural timber sourced from Dunearn Farm itself, with solar panels and a heat pump for maximum energy efficiency.
Nine objections were made over concerns of road safety and whether the timber business constituted agricultural use that could justify the building of an extra farmhouse.
However, 67 letters of support were also sent to Fife Council, with support given to the Low family and their history of fostering children.
Councillors on Fife's central and west planning committee had been set to debate the plans last month but the matter was deferred because of concerns over whether the Lows owned all of the land subject to the application.
Officers, having sought legal advice, ultimately concluded that the legal status of the plot was not a matter for them to consider and concurred that the new house would be "essential" for the business.
Case officer David Shankland wrote: "The contemporary, yet respectful design of the proposed house ensures that the development would sit comfortably and would undoubtedly enhance the landscape setting.”
The committee approved the plans unanimously, with conditions attached to control the building's final appearance, tree protection, parking and land contamination.
The information in this story came from a public notice published in this newspaper. You can read more public notices in our classified section today.