MORE than 1,000 people have backed a petition calling on Renfrewshire Council to bulldoze plans to build 250 homes in Erskine.

Persimmon Homes wants to develop a mix of houses and flats at an eight-hectare site near what used to be called the Erskine Bridge Hotel – now known as the Muthu Glasgow River Hotel.

The proposals also include a riverside park and three play areas.

Council officers recommended approval of the plans but, after dozens of objections were submitted from the likes of community councils in Erskine and Inchinnan, elected members opted instead to hold a hearing in October.

A number of residents are concerned about the proposed development, which they believe will damage the area’s “exquisite natural scenery.”

The petition states: “The green space on the southern bank of the Clyde in Erskine is a unique and much beloved area for walks and picturesque sights.

“Persimmon Homes evidently does not care, as they plan to overrun this beautiful area with 250 unnecessary homes that no-one asked for and which popular opinion in the area is clearly against.”

Councillor Tom Begg, who represents Erskine and Inchinnan, told The Gazette he believes the petition expresses genuine concern for the environment.

He said: “I don’t believe this is nimbyism, as for the last 50 years the electors of Erskine have had homes built all around them as the new town grew to over 15,000 souls.

“They want to see people get good homes at keen prices. They would rather see the town centre grow to match the population growth here. This is where this council is failing to meet the aspirations of local ratepayers.”

A Renfrewshire Council spokesman said next month’s hearing means applicants and objectors can have their say before a final decision is made.

He added: “It was agreed a hearing would be held under section 38A of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 to allow the applicant and any person who made a representation or objection to address the planning authority on planning issues arising from the environmental impact, including flooding risks and impact on Local Environmental Designations and on infrastructure, including roads and education facilities.”

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