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Hargreaves Land secures major planning decision in Scotland

06 Mar 2017

A plan by one of the North East’s largest companies to build a new town in Scotland is underway after planning approval for the first phase was granted.

A plan by one of the North East’s largest companies to build a new town in Scotland is underway after planning approval for the first phase was granted.

Hargreaves announced plans in January 2015 which would breathe new life into a former open cast mine, creating a major development comprising more than 3,000 homes, a school, community facilities and commercial units in East Lothian.

Hargreaves acquired the Blindwells site in July 2013 from the liquidators of collapsed Scottish Coal, in a portfolio of some 30,000 acres of land.

The 392-acre site, which stands on the north east side of the A1, overlooks the Firth of Forth, and is likely to become a commuter settlement for Edinburgh.

It had been allocated for residential development by East Lothian Council, and Hargreaves submitted an application for the plans in October 2014. The firm has now been given the green light for those plans.

The approval, which includes affordable housing and mixed-use development, represents the first phase of a wider master plan for more than 3,200 homes to be developed over the next 12 to 15 years.

The Blindwells site was formerly an open-cast coal mine until its closure in 2000 and the firm said it will require initial consolidation work, as well as the development of roads and connections to utility networks. Hargreaves will invest £5m in that work.

The work is expected to start soon, after which Hargreaves will carry out the phased sale of residential development plots to national and local house builders over a number of years.