Loch cash plea

The state of the water at Strathclyde Park just a couple of months ago. Picture: Barrie Reddington
The state of the water at Strathclyde Park just a couple of months ago. Picture: Barrie Reddington

Money from a £25 million Commonwealth Games windfall could be used to clean up the filthy water of ‘iconic’ Strathclyde Loch.

That’s the view of Motherwell and Wishaw MSP John Pentland who has called on Strathclyde Park users and the general public to get together and demand action.

Mr Pentland was shocked that the loch was closed on health grounds due to high levels of algae just weeks after the Games triathlon was held in July.

He’s also concerned that raw sewage is dumped in the loch - legally - and a major upgrade to end that practice is a long way off.

The MSP met Professor James Curran, chief executive of the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, last week and was dismayed to hear improvements at the loch are not due until 2021-2027.

He said: “It could happen sooner if there is a concerted campaign, pulling together support from users of the loch, businesses and community groups to turn public concern into political pressure on those who set the priorities.

“Who would have thought that six weeks after the first Games medal was awarded in Strathclyde Park for the triathlon the iconic loch would be shut down?

“We’re told the Games was delivered under budget, achieving a £25m surplus. Perhaps the legacy should be enhanced by some of that money being redeployed to improving Strathclyde Loch.”