Aberdeenshire Green councillor Martin Ford has commented on the announcement that The Trump Organization has withdrawn its planning application to build a second golf course at Menie and has abandoned its scheme to construct a large golf resort at the site.
“This is not a huge surprise, given Mr Trump’s track record elsewhere. For the last few years, the very slow pace of progress on the Menie development, the procrastination and delay, have strongly suggested Mr Trump was seeking an exit strategy – but wanted to be able to blame someone else for his decision not to proceed. His way out has been to blame the Scottish Government.”
Commenting on the suggestion that the proposed wind farm should have been moved or abandoned to appease Mr Trump, Cllr Ford said,
“Mr Trump has been making threats and unreasonable demands from the start. You don’t appease an arrogant, irrational bully. It doesn’t work. They only come back wanting even more.
“Mr Trump’s tendency to change his position and contradict himself, means we cannot be sure that he will not say something quite different next week. But I do think this probably is Mr Trump walking away from continuing work on his development.
“Of course, the Scottish Government should never have stepped in to grant Mr Trump planning permission in the first place. We have lost an important and beautiful natural area that was legally protected as a Site of Special Scientific Interest. Our duty, as I saw it, was to hand this natural heritage over to following generations intact, so they could enjoy it and wonder at and better understand nature.
“Instead, it has become a golf course. The justification for allowing this damage to the environment was the jobs and economic benefit the proposed golf resort would bring.
“While the scale of the economic benefit promised by Mr Trump was clearly ridiculously exaggerated, there is no doubt that, had the resort gone ahead, there would have been some job creation and economic activity as a result. As it is, the north-east has got the worst of all possible worlds. We have lost our irreplaceable, natural, mobile dune system – for negligible economic return.
“Mr Trump should never have been given planning permission.”
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I must say I’m glad to see the back of him, he has caused nothing but grief since he first stepped off of his private plane. It was bad enough that he destroyed a beautiful, living, eco system, but it now appears that it was all for nothing.
I bet Mr salmond feels like a bit of a twat now!
I can only wish Ireland the best of luck.
I absolutely hate Alex Salmond and his SNP for allowing Trump to damage my homeland. Like many Scots I will never vote for them or for Scottish Independence because of this.
I am curious as to how Trump will respond to the modified wind farm development about 5km from his Irish Doonbeg course? He cannot say he didn’t know about it (he would be a fool if he did) but if he is happy to let it go ahead without complaint, then it will prove that his complaints about the offshore Aberdeen wind farm were just posturing.
As Martin Ford says, the job creation potential was grossly overstated. the hundreds and houses and hotel were to pay for this project, now they are not going ahead (apparently), Mr Trump will be severely out of pocket. Will he have learned anything? Doubtful. The exit strategy seems to be to sell off land for housing development to the highest bidder. Given the planning permission for housing was linked to the other developments, let’s hope Aberdeenshire blocks this. Enough damage has been done.
“Trump” and “pull-out” – They should never be combined in ANY sentence. The mental image is just too horrible!
Disagree … If Donalds old man, Granpa Trump had ‘pulled out’ the world would be a far more fair and harmonious place 😉
Ford, the edjits that wanted to destroy Union Terrance Gardens, the bams that supported the wind farms, a lack lustre, lazy council (who has done NOTHING in 35 years to bolster the European oil Capital) and other varied neeps who think that Glass and Concrete is the way forward – you collectively are the true enemies of the people.
Your pathetic backward thinking has reduced this city to a JOKE.
Sadly the other main parties were as much in favour of Trump as the SNP were. Jack McConnel as Labour First Minister made Trump (and some of his minions) Global Scots for their contribution to Scottish Tourism and LibDems and Tories were vocal in their support.
And you’d be hard put to find one of them saying ‘we got it wrong’.
You are right to state that the other parties were in favour of the Trump proposal. You are also right to say that the process was kicked off by Jack McConnell and that all parties should accept a degree of responsibility. What cannot be denied, however, is that the SNP Government intervened in an unprecedented and undemocratic manner and exploited a technicality, that is the technicality which they discovered allowed for an application to be “called in” only if the calling in process was implemented prior to the applicant receiving formal written notification of the refusal. This meant that they had to move quickly and my goodmess didn’t they just?
To be honest, there is nothing wrong with a rich landowner, even one as slimy as Trump, making an application to build whatever they see fit on their land, and a golf course, particularly one which might bring tourists and employment to the area, does not, on the face of it, seem like an unreasonable proposal. The real issue here is that the applicant sought to build on an SSSI, which was contrary to the Local Plan. This meant that, even if they had wanted to, the Committee could not grant permission to proceed. Indeed, as I understand it, there was an initial motion moved to refuse the application and only two amendments, one to defer to give the applicant the opportunity to amend their application excluding the land within the SSSI and another, quite bizarrely, to defer the decision to Council officers to make the decision instead of the Councillors. The second amendment was defeated on a vote leaving a choice between deferral and refusal. Given the strident stance taken by the applicant to the effect that it was their way or no way it is hardly surprising that the Councillors voted, in accordance with normal procedure, to refuse, thereby giving the applicant the opportunity to reconsider and resubmit.
Within days, a very private meeting was held between SNP Government First Minister Salmond and the applicant, following which the technicality was very quickly identified and exploited by the SNP Government on behalf of the Trump organisation. Yes, all parties were in favour and none of them come out of this with any credit but only one First Minister and one party took the decision which, in my opinion, makes a mockery of our so called democracy and reveals clear corruption at the heart of Government.
I have no party political allegiance but only the SNP rode roughshod over local democracy and only the SNP led a bullying billionaire to believe he was bigger than an entire nation.
He must be stopped and not allowed to profit from planning gifted to him at our expense. the planning must be revoked. There will be no inward investment he will be taking the money for our land out of the country. Take the bull by the horns and let him rant, threaten and say what he likes just don’t let him profit from us, throw him out.