MacNeil calls on Comhairle to approve Community Asset Transfer

Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MP Angus Brendan MacNeil is calling on Comhairle nan Eilean Siar not to hinder a sports facility project on Barra.

Coimhearsnachd Bharraidh and Bhatarsaidh Ltd submitted an Asset Transfer request to Comhairle nan Eilean Siar for a plot of land opposite Castlebay Community School for the purpose of building a much needed all-weather pitch especially as it has been expected for years, and by some for as long as 18 years, but the Comhairle has not delivered. Now when others are stepping up the Comhairle is being an active hindrance.

This request was declined and the community is now in the process of appealing this decision.

Commenting Angus MacNeil MP said:

“It is really hard to understand and difficult to explain why the Comhairle is preventing a community from building a much-needed sports facility.

“I understand that one of the reasons for refusal is that the land in question may need to be used for the purpose of siting a portacabin during the construction of Castlebay Community School, however, I am told that land is being made available by a crofter for this purpose, should it be required.

“I have written to Comhairle Leader Roddie Mackay and all councillors, the Comhairle must approve the Community Asset Transfer of this land to allow the community to benefit from an all-weather pitch. This has full support on Barra and it is bizarre that the Comhairle of all bodies should ride rough shod over the community.

“Campaigners have lived with 18 years of promises from the Comhairle.  People are not even looking to the Comhairle to fund it but to get out of the way and let it happen.

“The community has until the 30th of January for their Community Asset Transfer appeal and Comhairle nan Eilean Siar should remember they were only custodians of the King George V playing fields in Castlebay and shouldn’t act like unreasonable Victorian landlords, councillors, of course, have to ensure this.”

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