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Campaign launched to save parkland area

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By Fiona Reid
Dumfries and West
Campaign launched to save parkland area

A CAMPAIGN is aiming to prevent a large section of a well-used green space in the centre of Dumfries being lost to housing.

The ‘Save Parkhead’ Facebook page received hundreds of likes within hours of its launch this week, while Loreburn Community Council are committing money for a survey gauging local awareness about the controversial plans.

Amid fears about Dumfries and Galloway Housing Partnership (DGHP) plans for the site between Lockerbie Road and Annan Road, a spokesman for the Internet page said: “The Save Parkhead Facebook page was set up on Tuesday afternoon and the response to it has been incredible.”

The spokesman added: “It was started because we realised many people in our community were unaware of the planned development.

“Given the potential loss of such a large and widely used area of parkland, that low awareness within the community is very concerning.”

About half the site is understood to be suitable for development, but the green space is well used used by groups including dog walkers, Happy Families and the American football team Dumfries Hunters who use two of the three football pitches.

Parkhead has long been earmarked for housing in the Local Development Plan.

And Stephen Slater from Dumfries Hunters said: “There’s always been word that this was the intention at some point, but nothing ever in the immediate future where the council were at the stage of selling the land off.”

While not opposed to social housing, he added: “We can’t have all the green space being taken away.

“It’s one thing we’ve got less and less of in the town.”

Dumfries and Galloway Council have now concluded the sale of the land at Parkhead to DGHP, with Loreburn Community Council on Tuesday committing some of their own money to carry out a survey of public awareness about the plans.

Meanwhile, newly-elected SNP Nith Ward councillor John Campbell has called for all revenues from the sale of Common Good assets, such as the land, to be retained for local use, and not placed in a central pot.
A spokesman for DGHP said: “Following the recent purchase of the site, plans are at a very early stage and have yet to go through the statutory process.

“As with all developments, consultation will be part of that process.”


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