Railfreight plan rejected by judges

Railfreight park was to cover huge site.
Railfreight park was to cover huge site.

Judges have ruled that Mossend International Railfreight Park, which promised nearly 5,000 jobs, cannot go ahead.

The decision has been welcomed by North Lanarkshire Council which had refused PD Stirling planning permission.

The council ruling was upheld by the Scottish Government’s reporter after an inquiry, but ministers overruled that and permission was granted.

Now that decision has itself been quashed by judges at the Court of Session after an appeal by the council.

The planning application was rejected by the council two years ago after more than 1,200 objections. People living in the area were worried about the impact of traffic and noise, and the loss of greenbelt.

Council leader Jim Logue said the judges’ ruling was “damning” for Government minister Alex Neil.

Bellshill councillor Harry Curran described it as a “victory for the people”.

Councillor James Coyle, the council’s planning convener, added: “The council’s decision to appeal the view of the Scottish Government has been wholly vindicated.

“The decision of the court to uphold the council’s appeal says that the Scottish Government refused to accept the advice given by the independent reporter. The Scottish Government ignored the council’s local plan. It also said the reasons given by the Scottish Government were not properly explained.

“The Scottish Government has the right to appeal. I certainly hope it does not waste any further public money in doing so.”