Contact newsdesk on:

Classified adverts   I   Jobs                               

Small Ads & Local Services    


Hebrides News



A planning appeal to establish a yard for an expanding Western Isles building company has been rejected by a Scottish Government planning reporter.


O’Mac Construction sought to move to a new base with workshop store buildings, offices and car parking in the rural settlement of Steinish about a mile outside Stornoway.


Western Isles planning officials recommended approval but councillors refused planning permission after around 110 objections over traffic and safety problems on the single track road, blotting the landscape, loss of quality agricultural land and impact on the neighbouring auction mart.


O’Mac appealed to the Scottish Government which despatched planning reporter Timothy Brian to Lewis to inspect the site on a croft off the village road, beside the Lewis and Harris Auction Mart.


The firm - which employs around 43 islanders - pointed out it struggled to find an alternative site.


Mr Brian has now agreed with the council’s decision.


He concluded: “I share the concerns of local residents, in particular, that: the proposed development is not in keeping with the crofting settlement of Steinish; the single-track road is inadequate to cope with the traffic associated with the development; and the builder’s yard should be located within a designated industrial area.


He added: “ I do not consider that the economic benefits of the proposal, or the challenges of identifying a suitable alternative site, warrant developing a builder’s yard on the appeal site.


Mr Brian said: “I conclude that the grant of planning permission for the auction mart on adjoining land should not be regarded as setting a precedent for the proposed development of a builder’s yard at Steinish.


“Indeed, it might be argued that the establishment of a builder’s yard in this location could itself set an undesirable precedent for further commercial development proposals in the future.”

He did not concur there would be impacts on wildlife, water pollution, noise or dust.

Builder’s yard appeal rejected

20 February 2018