School Roll Forecasts

For your representations to the Proposed Local Development Plan – school roll forecasts based on the 2019 Land Audit show capacity at Balmedie Primary will reach 118% by 2024

There is no provision for a school in the PLDP.
“All residential development may be required to contribute towards additional primary school capacity.” (Page 477)…/a…/school-roll-forecasts/

Bid Site Map – Sites Currently “Reserved”

Bid site map below showing all sites currently with “Reserved” Status for housing. If we allow the first development to proceed without objection, then more will follow. There is no provision for increased amenities within the village.

Reserved – Site FR140 – 117 homes. (in current LPD 0-5yrs)

Reserved – Site FR141a – 55 homes (in current LPD 0-5yrs)

Reserved – Site FR141b – 61 homes (in current LPD 0-5yrs)

Reserved – Site FR104 – 100 homes (by the community centre)

Reserved – Site FR037a – 90 homes (field opposite the old Church)

Link to the MIR final Report – Potterton is on page 83.

Belhelvie Community Council Meetings

I hope everyone is finding this page a useful place to share/discuss information on the Proposed Local Development Plan.

It would’ve been ideal if we could have come together in person to discuss concerns or raise questions, but that’s simply not possible right now.

One of our community members has posted a link earlier to the next Belhelvie Community Council Meeting if you wish to join. The meeting will be held online, please email the BCC at to request an invitation.

Final Issues and Actions Report 2019

Sharing extract from Final Issues and Actions Report 2019 for “Bid Site” FR037 – Link below Page 83.

FR037A – Opposite Church

FR037B – Opposite Gourdie Park

Respondents comments: –

486/553 is Stewart Milne Homes

315 is Belhelvie Community Council

Bid FR037 It is considered that this site should be formally identified as Strategic Reserve Land as envisaged by the Strategic Development Plan (486). They consider that the site would not have a detrimental impact on the landscape character of Potterton. Respondents are of the view that there are no infrastructure constraints, and the site would provide a village green and deliver affordable housing (486, 553).

Another respondent does not support reserving site FR037B to avoid giving the site any premature development plan status and to allow the community to reflect further on the longer-term growth of the settlement (315).

We Say…

“Now is the time for the community to reflect further on the longer-term growth of our village. Reflect and have your voice heard by Aberdeenshire Council.

Put this decision back in the hands of the community. It’s not being done to us, to our village whilst we can still fight it.

Please submit your responses to the Proposed Aberdeenshire Local Development Plan 2020 before 17th July 2020.

Jim Gifford

Andrew Hassan

Karen Adam

Paul Johnston

Planning Policy Team, Infrastructure Services, Aberdeenshire Council, Woodhill House, Westburn Road, Aberdeen, AB16 5GB”

Contact Information

Please submit your responses to the Proposed Aberdeenshire Local Development Plan 2020 before 31st July 2020.

Jim Gifford –
Andrew Hassan –
Karen Adam –
Paul Johnston –

Gillian Martin MSP –
Unit 6, Colpy Business Park
AB51 0FU

Planning Policy Team –
Infrastructure Services
Aberdeenshire Council
Woodhill House
Westburn Road
AB16 5GB

**Link to the response form.**

Housing Land Supply

One of our community members has done some great work on the Housing Land Supply and nicely summarized it below. Great reading!

The Aberdeen City and Shire Strategic Development Plan sets out the housing requirement for each Housing Market Area. Potterton, as part of Formartine, is part of Aberdeenshire, which is part of the Aberdeen Housing Market Area. A minimum 5 years’ supply of housing land is required; the 2019 Housing Land Audit demonstrates that for the period 2019 – 2023 there is 7.2 years’ supply available in the Aberdeenshire part of the Aberdeen Housing Market Area, with availability of land for 10,816 houses (more than 3,000 in the Formartine area alone) to meet a projected requirement of 7,509 houses. The is no shortage of housing stock compared to 2019 predictions.

Market conditions have of course deteriorated significantly since the 2019 Housing Audit was carried out. A report released by the Centre for Real Estate Research at the University of Aberdeen Business School for the 1st Quarter of 2020 continues to show a depressed market in the area, with an annualised fall in house prices of over 5% from 2015 to 2020 (Aberdeen City & Suburbs area). A report from Aberdeenshire Council ‘Aberdeenshire’s Housing Market’ from Sept 2019 shows a fall of 31% in the number of house sales between 2014 and 2018, with a corresponding drop in the average house price of over £40,000 or 17%.

The houses allocated to major developments are not being built – there has been a steady decline in demand for housing year-on-year since 2014-15, largely due to the downturn in the oil & gas industry. The Chairman of the ASPC sees this trend continuing due to Brexit, Covid-19 and a further deterioration in oil prices.

Therefore there is no need to release green belt land in Potterton to meet demand for housing. Building large housing estates in Potterton would only depress prices in the area further by oversupplying the market, whilst needlessly destroying the amenity value of living in the green belt.

The link to the Aberdeen City Housing Land Audit 2019 is below.

Ongoing Concerns on Education Provision

In the minutes provided by Belhelvie Community Council for 21st October 2019, under the planning section:

“The BCC highlighted their concerns that ongoing development is having on schools in area.”

Following on 18th November 2019:
“BCC will also report to Elaine Brown that in the initial plans there was a provision of a primary school and this has been removed at the request of Aberdeenshire Council.”
This is in regards to a school at the approved Blackdog development 1 mile from Potterton village.

Earlier in 2018, there was also a reply from I Downie, as shown in the minutes of the 20th August 2018: “Concerned about the issue of primary school provision in the Balmedie Primary School catchment area. With so many major residential developments, and Trump International looking to build 500 new homes, this is an acute problem as the existing school simply cannot continue to be considered capable of accommodating the pupil product.”

The proposed LDP states: “All residential development may be required to contribute towards additional primary school capacity.”

There are constant ongoing concerns from the local community council, which have been noted in their meetings, and yet, the sites in the proposed LDP do not raise the provision of education as a concern in our area.

Our local primary education at Balmedie Primary School is already at capacity and whilst Potterton is based in Aberdeenshire, children are transported to Bridge of Don Academy in Aberdeen City rather than remain within the local authority for secondary education. There is currently no provision made for children within Potterton to be transported to our local authority secondary school at Ellon Academy. Our children here in the village are not on a public service bus route to reach our local authority secondary school. With all this considered as large scale development, how can the local authority adequately support the education of more children within our area?

Final Issues and Actions Report

Sharing a statement from the Final Issues and Actions Report in regards to Education. The Final Issues and Actions report is attached and can be found at the below link. Potterton is Page 83.–actions–formartine.pdf

“The Draft Proposed Local Development Plan (LDP) does not propose to include a specific allocation for a school. Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services are a stakeholder in the preparation of the Proposed LDP and have advised that, in the first instance, they would seek to extend or reconfigure the existing primary school, alongside a wider strategic approach to primary school education in south Formartine. However, we are committed to continuously engage with Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services on the capacity of Balmedie Primary School.”

“The preferred sites provide no community facilities or services to address the planning objectives contained within the Vision (532).”

Green Spaces… The Benefits

More than ever, the community appreciates all our green space. It is worthwhile to note in our objections that the current green space should be kept as Green Belt allocation in the Local Development Plan as our green spaces have been invaluable to our community during the pandemic and we wish to see them protected in the LDP, and seen as unsuitable sites for development.

Have a think about your own personal experiences and how being part of this community with access to such beautiful green spaces has helped during lockdown.…/The-Value-of-our-Green-Spaces…

Ancient Woodland

Just beyond Denview Road Potterton, there is an extremely important and valuable area of woodland, which has stood there for over 400 years. This woodland has a special designation as Ancient Woodland. It has earned this designation as only 2.4% of the UK land area is covered by Ancient Woodland. It is an irreplaceable resource which must be protected from adverse impacts resulting from new developments.

Though the 2021 Local Development Plan recognises this wood as Ancient Woodland, it makes scant provision for its protection. The housing plan included in the Supporting Transport Note shows houses stretching right up to its boundary. This woodland is home to many vulnerable and threatened species which would be at risk both during construction (eg from chemicals, cement dust and construction waste) and also after construction (eg from garden pesticides, fly tipping, garden waste, trampling of woodland plants, predation of wildlife by pets, vandalism and increased traffic pollution).

At present Denview Road lies only 20m away from this special place. It is irresponsible to build houses any closer. Potterton’s Green Belt must remain in place to protect this irreplaceable Ancient Woodland. We need to be its voice and make sure it has the space it deserves!

If you want to learn more about our irreplaceable Ancient Woodland, please visit the Woodland Trust link below. Lots of interesting facts about what can be found there and their importance! More to follow on this….