Highlands & Islands

Challenge to housing developments in Cairngorms fails

An Camas Mor (picture courtesy of Cairngorms National Park Authority)
Image caption An Camas Mor near Aviemore is one of the four proposed developments the Cairngorms Campaign opposes

An environmental group has failed in a legal challenge to four major housing developments proposed for the Cairngorms National Park.

The Cairngorms Campaign opposes plans for 1,500 homes at An Camas Mor, near Aviemore, and 117 at Carrbridge, 300 at Kingussie and 40 at Nethy Bridge.

It appealed to the Court of Session over the park authority's local plan, which includes the developments.

In a statement, the group said its challenge had been unsuccessful.

The campaign had appealed against a legal judgement that rejected a previous court challenge to the local plan.

It claimed the four developments were a threat to wildlife and a proper environmental and ecological assessment of the impact of the local plan had not been carried out.

But Lady Paton, sitting with Lady Smith and Lord Bracadale, rejected the appeal and said they were not persuaded that a reference to the European Court of Justice was necessary in the action.

The senior judge said the Cairngorms National park Authority's (CNPA) appropriate assessment could not be said to be one which no reasonable authority would have produced in the circumstances.

Lady Paton said: "It was therefore open to the CNPA to adopt a local plan which relied on the assessment."

Judge Lord Glennie rejected the Cairngorms Campaign's challenge last year but the group appealed against his decision.

The CNPA had instructed its lawyers to seek an urgent disposal of the appeal to avoid further delays to the implementation of the local plan.

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