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Oban shinty clubs have voiced their concerns over the threat to the pitch at Ganavan as the deadline approaches for the council’s public consultation on phase two of the Local Development Plan.
The plan includes a proposal to put an access road from the Dunbeg Housing Corridor through recreational land at Ganavan which is currently used for a multitude of outdoor activities – the shinty pitch is used on a regular basis by Oban Camanachd and Oban Celtic alongside several other local sports teams.
The public consultation ends at noon this Thursday, January 23. Up until then members of the public still have a chance to have their say on the proposals.
Camanachd president Patrick Steeman is urging objectors to make their voices heard.
‘We are very strongly against any proposals for development on this particular piece of land,’ he told us.
‘There is a high demand for playing surfaces in and around Oban, and Ganavan is one of the few that stand up to the weather. It is crucial that we keep the use of the Ganavan pitch as we continue to grow and develop our sport.’
The shinty pitch itself is in a ‘blue’ (protected) area within the plan and would have to be relocated if the proposal was given the green light. Mr Steeman has his own ideas about where they will put it, however.
‘On the back burner, that’s where it will go,’ he added.
‘We must make sure the council is aware of how many people are against this proposal by logging our objections.’
Oban Celtic secretary Davie Hamilton shared the views of the rival club, although was cautiously optimistic over the future of the pitch.
‘If they are going to take away a green park they are legally bound to replace it with another,’ he said.
‘This isn’t going to happen tomorrow, so there will be plenty time to look at options. The bottom line is that we need something in situ somewhere and the location would have to be decided before any proposal is passed.’
To read the full proposals go to www.argyll-bute.gov.uk/ldp2