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Dornoch Area Community Council votes 4:2 to support Coul Links

By Caroline McMorran

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Dornoch Area Community Council (DACC) has come out in favour of the controversial Coul Links championship golf course proposal.

At their regular monthly meeting last night, members voted down a proposal that they "make no comment” over the application.

Dornoch Area Community Council chairman Paddy Murray seconded the motion to support the Coul Links golf course development.
Dornoch Area Community Council chairman Paddy Murray seconded the motion to support the Coul Links golf course development.

The council is a statutory consultee on planning applications in its area and its opinion carries weight with planners.

Communities for Coul lodged an application with Highland Council in February to develop the championship golf course at Coul Links.

Community councillors held an “information gathering” online meeting on May 2 at which presentations were made by Communities for Coul (C4C), and by Not Coul, the group campaigning against it on environmental grounds


Coul Links debate – AGAINST: 'Harm to landscape and access to vital dunes'

Coul Links debate – FOR: 'Course will help to protect environment'

A motion and an amendment regarding the Coul Links application were on the table at last night’s meeting.

The motion to support the application was proposed by treasurer Jerry Bishop and seconded by chairman Paddy Murray.

It stated that the community council existed to represent the views of its constituents to Highland Council, and that available evidence showed that more than two-thirds of people resident in the area supported the application and the opportunities it would bring.

The motion proposed in the light of that local support, DACC should lend its support to the planning application.

An amendment tabled by community councillor Genevieve Duhigg and seconded by her colleague Graeme Ross proposed that DACC “has no comment to make regarding the planning application at this stage”.

Ms Duhigg’s amendment stated: “DACC concludes that it is not required to assess the economic, scientific or other related data to determine or opine on the veracity of the application.

“By providing a platform and space for interested parties to express their views and by encouraging letters of comment, support or objection to be submitted, it has enabled a free and open date and the views of constituents to be heard.”

Members voted 4:2 for the proposal with two abstentions.

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