MoD banking battle in Kinloss

17 September 2008

Peter Peacock, Highlands and Islands regional Labour MSP, is supporting Kinloss residents in a long running battle with the MoD over local safety after they built a high banking round officers quarters.

Residents at Burnside say the bund is dangerous and possibly illegal given its height and proximity to the road. There are also safety fears for road users as the route leads to a level crossing.

Mr Peacock has been meeting with the residents to hear their concerns. "This is a bizarre situation and one which is quite dangerous," he said.

"It appears the Ministry of Defence had erected an earth bund which may exceed the permitted height.

"In so doing they have cut the visibility of a number of properties and are exposing residents to extra danger when exiting their properties by car.

"On top of this there is regular speeding on this road, adding to the risks."

Mr Peacock is also concerned about the large poplar trees along the roadside.

"When they erected the bund the Ministry of Defence built it around the trunks of the poplar trees growing there, so their trunks are covered to a height of 4 ft or more.

"In that circumstance the chances are that the tree trunks are rotting and that could make what are now pretty big trees even more dangerous," he said.

After contacting the Ministry of Defence Mr Peacock was told the bund is to protect properties from flooding, but residents are sceptical.

"Anyone who visits the site will see very quickly the bund would have no effect on flood protection at all.

"The water would simply run around the bund because of its construction. In any event I have a letter in my possession from ten years ago to one of the local residents which never mentioned flooding as the reason for building the bund.

"This problem has been going on for over ten years and, as the trees have grown the issue has got worse for local people.

"They are seriously concerned about their safety, and rightly so.

"I will be writing again to the Ministry of Defence about the condition of the trees and about the need to remove the bund.

"I will also be writing to Moray Council to see if the bund is above regulation height and whether they have the powers to take enforcement action if the Ministry of Defence don't act.

"I will also be asking Moray Council for their view on the safety of the trees and to install reactive speed warning signs to help improve the safety of the local people.

"The local people are very understandable frustrated by what has happened and I am very happy to try and help them get answers and action on the various problems."


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