Royal Aberdeen golf bosses say ‘random noises’ from new Bridge of Don recycling centre would ruin games

webnexttech | Royal Aberdeen golf bosses say ‘random noises’ from new Bridge of Don recycling centre would ruin games

Welcome to Planning Ahead – our weekly round-up of the latest proposals across the north-east. This week, we have a look at a clash over plans for a new Bridge of Don dump. The neighbouring Royal Aberdeen golf course is fighting against the recycling centre, along with the new owners of the nearby business park. Golf bosses claim the sound of people heaving unwanted items into metal skips could put people off their swing when they’re trying to enjoy a relaxing round. Elsewhere, we have a dash of theatricality as bosses at the Tivoli raise the curtain on aims to make its shows more accessible – and to install an eye-catching new sign… Tivoli could have its name up in lights in package of upgrades Aberdeen’s Tivoli Theatre has just celebrated its 150th anniversary. It was built as Her Majesty’s Opera House in 1872, and still hosts an array of shows. It is hailed as an “outstanding example of a Victorian theatre”. The A-listed Guild Street institution has played host to legendary performers from Charlie Chaplin to Julie Andrews in its time. Later on, it became a bingo hall but that closed in 1997 and it lay dormant for years until being reborn as a theatre in 2013. In the days and weeks ahead, it will welcome a Sabrina The Teenage Witch TV star, Scottish singing legend Eddie Reader, comedian Frankie Boyle and a George Michael tribute act – among other performers. But management want to make sure the historic venue meets present day expectations. Specifically, it needs to be a welcoming place for people of all abilities. And they have lifted the lid on just what the current setup is like. ‘Rudimentary’ disabled access at Victorian theatre is far from ideal The latest plans are for a platform lift to take wheelchair users up to the auditorium so that they can enjoy the spectacles therein. Documents from specialist architect David Chouman explain that, as things are, there is “no fixed means for those with mobility issues to easily access the building”. For the past few years a “rudimentary” stair-climber device has been deployed for this, which Mr Chouman describes as being unsafe, noisy and a bit of an eyesore in the otherwise charming theatre. It “struggles to cope” on the narrow staircase and is also too slow, which leads to queues amassing for those needing to use it. “In combination, the factors provide a sub-standard experience for users of this iconic performance venue,” is how he puts it. The platform lift, he adds, would “greatly improve” the state of affairs with minimal impact on the venue. Meanwhile, a hydraulic lift would be built at the rear of the building to get equipment and props onto the stage via the tall double doors at first floor level. And that’s not all. Management want glowing new signage spelling out “T I V O L I” at the front of the building. This will “provide an enhanced public presence to travelling passersby”, while reinstating a part of its past. New paths at Aberdeen forest devastated by Storm Arwen Countesswells Forest, on the outskirts of Aberdeen, has been battered by the flurry of storms which have caused chaos in recent years. Scores of trees were knocked down during Arwen in 2021, with more damage soon to follow. Now Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) wants permission to re-route and repair 151m of existing trails. At the same time, bosses want to create 340m of new pathways, to provide “improved access”. These will be linked to the existing network. Fiona Robertson, FLS area visitor services manager explained: “Since Storm Arwen a vast area of the forest has been affected by windblown trees and paths within these areas damaged. “The trees have been clear felled so no trees will need to be removed to carry out the works, and restocking has been planned.” Plans to bring new businesses to seaside village A developer wants to bring a pair of new businesses to the coastal village of Gardenstown, near Macduff. Ritchie Properties has lodged plans to turn what remains of a ruined old house on Harbour Road into a shop or salon, with a flat upstairs. Nearby, they want to turn a workshop on Harbour Lane into a local shop. The building was originally a boat-building shed, and has been a workshop for 60 years. Papers sent to the council state: “This workshop is no longer utilised and the client sees this as an opportunity to convert the building into a multifunction commercial and domestic premises, bringing employment opportunities to the area. “Gardenstown has a lack of local grocers and the intention is to open a well-stocked premises for the local population.” Memorial cairn could immortalise past members of Aboyne Golf Club Cairns are quite often used as a striking way to remember lost loved ones, and there are some especially well known examples in Deeside. There are 16 on the Balmoral Estate, most of which were built at Queen Victoria’s behest. In 2022, the Invercauld Estate at Braemar erected Alwyne’s Cairn in memory of clan chief Captain Alwyne Farquharson. Now, Aboyne Golf Club wants to create one of its own. Papers sent to Aberdeenshire Council say the structure would be in “remembrance of members who have sadly died”. They add: “Historically, name plaques were added to various benches around the course, however, due to the large numbers, there is no space left on these. “A cairn would provide a suitable place for inscribed metal plaques to be positioned in one central location on the golf course.” It would be to the south of the tee at the 13th hole. Solar panels for village hall The team that looks after Crathes Public Hall wants to help make the building more energy efficient with solar panels on the roof. Crathes Community Council runs the facility, which is almost 100 years old. It’s used for weddings, parties, concerts and all manner of other activities. In 2017, Theresa May staged a rally there. Banff Castle firing range could be new office space A pavilion attached to Banff Castle could be turned into a unique new office after being vacated by a rifle club. Banff Castle Community Association have the east pavilion building in their sights, with the narrow firing range transformed into meeting space under their vision. It follows the “demise” of Banff and Macduff Rifle Club, which practised in the 21m x 3m space. Architects were recruited in December to scrutinise the building, recommending “small scale” alterations that would not affect its character. The office would be used by the association and leased out. Papers sent to Aberdeenshire Council state that there are “no formal records” to show when the old wing became a rifle range, but it was at least 120 years ago. New doorways and windows would be created under the plans to modernise the narrow space, and also make it safe in the event of fires. Row brewing over Bridge of Don recycling centre plans The leaders behind an Aberdeen business park and the Royal Aberdeen golf course are mounting a fight against plans for a huge recycling centre. At the start of this year, Manchester-based property company AM Sci Tech picked up Aberdeen Energy Park in Bridge of Don, along with nearby Aberdeen Innovation Park. The sites are home to firms including Keenan Recycling, Prospect 13 and ICR, as well as business organisations Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce and Elevator. They had been put on the market in late 2022 with a combined guide price of £15 million. The energy park along the coast comes with its own test drilling rig: And the firm promptly announced plans to prosper from 100 acres of untapped development potential. If all goes to plan, this will net them £100m across the next decade. Why is there a row about the Bridge of Don recycling centre plans? But when they were signing the big-money deal, they had no idea that Aberdeen City Council was planning to build a huge new recycling plant next door. The £3.7m proposals for the old AECC overflow car park on Claymore Drive has lain vacant since the entertainment mecca staged its final event in 2019. It would have 25 skips and its own reuse shop. AM Sci Tech is a subsidiary of Hurstwood Holdings, and its investment director Richard Bousfield has now written to the council to express his displeasure. He points out that there is just 10m between the two sites. And Mr Bousfield is worried about an “unacceptable” impact on their new land. He adds: “As an immediate neighbour to the site, with existing tenants occupying office facilities located some 10m from the site boundary, we have concerns over the potential for noise, dust, unpleasant odours and litter.” Royal Aberdeen fight recycling centre plans next to golf course Meanwhile Royal Aberdeen Golf Club is just 20m away, and management there aren’t happy either. Papers sent to the council state: “Royal Aberdeen Golf Club is the sixth oldest club in the world, founded in 1780, and has been established in its current location since 1888. “Throughout the past 128 years the course has been subject to modification and improvement, with the aim of establishing a very high quality and traditional links. “The culmination of these improvements has allowed the attraction of a series of prestigious tournaments over the years.” ‘Random noise will cause conflict’ The message raises concerns about how close the recycling centre would be to the tee for the 15th hole of the Championship Course and the approach to the 14th. “This is a highly sensitive part of the boundary with the former AECC site,” the letter warns.” It adds: “The random loud noise generated close to the golf course will cause conflict in uses. “The noise will affect those playing the course and the sense of connection with the natural surroundings that makes Royal Aberdeen such an attractive setting for golf.” You can see the plans here: Tivoli lifts and sign Gardenstown shop/salon plan, and grocery store Bridge of Don row as Royal Aberdeen bosses fight recycling plans

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