Today at Glenurquhart Road, talk about a cast iron leagacy Gurnites, there was no competent motion that could be found for those that spoke against the application for 4,500 houses at Tornagrain, a proposal favoured by the former administration and enshrined in the Highland Wide Development plan. The application is also backed up by the findings of a Scottish Goverment Reporter. It looked bullet proof. Try as they might the combined efforts of Cllrs Roddy Balfour, Jim Crawford and Richard Laird could not come up with reasons that would be deemed competent for the formulation of a proposal for refusal.
It was bizzare and at times the Circusmaster of this surreal event, Jimmy Gray, struggled to keep the proceedings on an even keel. Angry members wanted to know why, after a site visit and two hours of debate they were not allowed to vote yeah or nay on the matter. Why indeed were they there if the application could only be rubberstamped? Nine members (a majority to this observer including Michael Green) then asked to have their dissent recorded. Liz tried to buy some time for those wishing to dissent in asking for an adjournment for further consultation with officers, she was concerned that some new councillors would need more advice in such a situation. Perhaps Jim Crawford and Roddy Balfour, the more experienced hands on deck might have found a way to object with some digging beforehand but it did look as though it was extremely done and dusted no matter what. It was an unsettling experience that left a bad taste.
If Tornagrain came along today it probably wouldn't go through, as it is everyone is stuck with it, including all the nearby community councils that don't want it and all the locals according to Roddy Balfour. If time permits we'll examine some of the comments from the dissenters.