“Step up” and stop the land slip
A Troup Councillor has urged Aberdeenshire Council to “step up” amid ongoing concerns regarding land slip at a development in Rosehearty.
Councillor Hamish Partridge made the comments after he was cleared of any wrongdoing by the Public Standards Commission when he alleged that planning officers had spread “outright lies” in regards to the development near Ritchie Road, Rosehearty.
An investigation by the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman also found that the council had not handled the planning process properly.
Cllr Partridge said: “The blame has been put on the doorstep of the council so they now need to step up and fix it.
“They need to take ownership of it.”
Councillor Partridge had raised concerns on behalf of a constituent regarding a retaining wall and land slip at the new development on Ritchie Road.
Despite site visits and Cllr Partridge’s objections his constituents concerns were overlooked.
This led Cllr Partridge to make his “outright lies” comment which subsequently seen a complaint lodged against him to the Standards Commission by then council leader Mr Gifford - from which he, Cllr Partridge, was exonerated.
Cllr Partridge said: “My belief was that they had lied on site and that they had twisted the truth on site.”
The Councillor now believes that following the Commission’s decision and the Ombudsman’s decision land slip at the Rosehearty site needs to be carefully looked again for all residents.
He said: “They have been found guilty on this one thing but we need to look at the whole site and see where we go from there.
“We can’t fix it for one and not for the others.”
A spokesman for Aberdeenshire Council said: ““We accept the recommendations set out by the Scottish Public Service Ombudsman in relation to this complaint.
“The Planning Service is already acting on the recommendations, and a full apology has been issued to the individual concerned.
“Measures have been taken to feedback the lessons learned from this incident to all relevant staff, and the service has introduced improved processes and procedures.”
After the decisions Cllr Partridge vowed to continue working with the council on the land slip matter while fighting for his constituents concerns.
He said: “I would do it again if I had to - it is what we are elected to do.
“We are part of Aberdeenshire Council but we are elected by the people.”