VILLAGERS are aiming to block controversial plans to turn a coal yard into homes. 

A planning application has been submitted to Renfrewshire Council by Glasgow firm L&S Homes to build 39 houses next to Station Road, in Bridge of Weir. 

The homes, a mix of three and four bedroom plots, will border Bridge of Weir Road and the village’s popular Moss Road Park. 

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However, part of the land is used by Beaton Bros Coal Merchants and local people also fear any development could be to the detriment of the park. 

Villagers have submitted over 500 objections regarding the plan while a further 200 were registered in opposition to the Local Area Development Plan – which identified the yard as an ideal location for 39 new homes. 

Joyce Beaton, co-owner of Beaton Bros Funeral Directors, who run the coal yard, says the council and the developers are acting as if her business does not exist. 

She told The Gazette: “They are actually applying for planning permission for something that is a functioning coal yard.

“We deliver a lot of coal to the outlying areas and to rural Renfrewshire and without us many people wouldn’t be able to heat their homes. No one seems to have considered this impact.

She added: “As things stand, the road is already very busy and this would only increase it. The entrance they have proposed is unsuitable and is not even fit for purpose at the moment.”

The Gazette: Beaton Bros. Coal Merchants would be lost if the plans go ahead Beaton Bros. Coal Merchants would be lost if the plans go ahead

The land is owned by Sustrans and their connected charity, Railway Parks Ltd, who say the sale will “support their charitable aims”. 

However, local man Norrie Johnstone is one of many villagers who believes  Moss Road Park must be protected. 

The 68-year-old said: “It is the only decent park in Bridge of Weir and kids of all ages can go into it and play.

The Gazette: Plans submitted to Renfrewshire Council show the proposed development Plans submitted to Renfrewshire Council show the proposed development

“Renfrewshire Council has tried two or three times to get things done in Bridge of Weir but the people of the village are not going to lie down. It’s not like this is a vacant piece of land doing nothing.”

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An L&S Homes spokesperson said: “The site has been offered for sale with vacant possession by the owner. We are conscious of local needs and have endeavoured to respond to these within our application.” 

A Council spokesperson said a decision will be made later this year. 

To view the application in full visit Renfrewshire Council’s planning website and search 19/0456/PP 

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