"The site has national and international importance, not only Scottish. It is one of the few places that openly speaks about the horrifying effects of the Highland Clearances that affect Scottish culture to this very day."
Photo credit above: BBC, GSDC admins and members at October 13 protest Note: to read articles below, click on date/headline live link
Drone view of the land soon to be called Cairnfields...note how inappropriate a housing development will be here! This can also be seen from the Battlefield!
From the GSDC. . . .Please read! Culloden: a battlefield or a building site? Is this image truly in keeping with the history and character of the battlefield, blending in perfectly without affecting the serenity of a war grave/cemetery? 'Cairnfields', luxury living on a battlefield, is reality. Next up is the Treetops holiday park (18/01399/FUL) which may be considered by Highland Council in December and could thereafter be referred to the Scottish Government. Maybe the 273 objections had something to do with that. There were another two applications lodged this month for developments on key locations on the battlefield where action was definitely seen, for a luxury house near Culchunaig (18/04194/FUL) and an agricultural shed next to Stable Hollow (18/04719/FUL). These are literally footsteps from the NTS-owned site. Links for both applications below. To date there are 11 objections to ‘Culchunaig’ and only 4 to ‘Stable Hollow’. Too few yet to send out a really strong Group message: No Development at Culloden. There is still time to do so. Please take a few minutes to have your say in preserving the integrity of Culloden Battlefield BEFORE it is too late. Anyone, anywhere in the world is entitled to do so. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org quoting the respective planning reference. If you need some inspiration in drafting your objections, take a look at the comments section on the respective files. Thank you for your support.
October 15, 2018 . . . Global Heritage Culloden Moor: Building Site or Battleground? Influence from a foundation such as UNESCO could have provided possible aid to the current issues facing the heritage and history of Culloden Battlefield, and overturned any further planning permissions in the future.This approval, giving allowance for residences to be built just half a mile from the battlefield, alongside still being held within the actual conservation area, simply highlights the presence of higher authority public services with regard to the heritage sector, and although it will aid with the increase in visitors it comes at the cost of affecting the nature, history and authenticity of the site itself.
October 16, 2018 . . . Inverness Courier Protestors continue fight against Culloden housing project More than 100 people have marched on Culloden Battlefield in the latest bid to stop a controversial development. The campaign was held in protest against 16 new houses which are being built on the site. The march was organised by the campaign group Stop Development at Culloden (GSDC). After the protest, local councillor Ken Gowans blasted Historic Environment Scotland for failing to protect the site.
October 15, 2018 . . . Press and Journal Protesters gather in bid to halt Culloden Battlefield home development Protesters gathered at the site of a controversial housing development near Culloden Battlefield at the weekend in their latest attempt to halt the project.Work on the 16 homes at Viewhill began last month. But campaign group Stop Development at Culloden (GSDC) are not prepared to give up on their five-year battle against the development, and gathered on Saturday to once again make their feelings known.
October 15. . . The Orkney News ” The seeds of rebellion will be plucked for ever” – Why Culloden Matters The construction by Kirkwood Homes was granted planning permission by Highland Council. The development includes all the usual infrastructure you would expect – roads, lighting, drainage and fibre broadband. Now maybe you think, so what, 16 luxury homes where a battle took place over 273 years ago, what does that matter? It matters to those who have ancestors who were slaughtered on that field (on both sides). People still visit the site who are descendants of those who died – just as anyone would visit a memorial garden or cemetery to the two world wars.
October 4, 2019 . . . Scottish Government has called in the Treetops Stables, change of use to Holiday Park! "Scottish Ministers may intervene in determining a planning proposal, whether an application or an appeal, where it is felt there is a national interest in doing so. We make all correspondence between ourselves, planning authorities and Historic Environment Scotland relating to each case's progress available to the public. " Holiday Park Planned for Culloden Battlefield October 4, Notification Letter
September 30, 2018 . . . The Guardian Second battle of Culloden rages as locals clash with developers Professor Sir Tom Devine, one of Scotland’s foremost historians, has now added his voice to those of the protesters in urging the government to halt the development. This weekend he said: “The Battle of Culloden spread into the surrounding fields as English dragoons chased the remnants of the Highland army and cut them down. Their bones are scattered all around the periphery, which makes this, too, part of the Culloden war grave.
GSDC member, Paul Jamieson, offers his video taken on Culloden Battlefield October 4th...accompany him on a Battlefield walk to the construction area of the 16 houses at Viewhill Farm on a rainy Highland day!
Anger at plans for development near Culloden Moor This new proposal is for conversion of the existing TreeTop equestrian centre, which has little intrusive impact, to enable construction of holiday, leisure and hospitality facilities, including 13 lodges, a cafe/shop, reception building, laundry and restaurant. Diarmid Hearns, the (Scottish National) Trust’s head of policy, said: ‘This will be the first big test of the council’s initiative to try and protect what remains of historic battlefield and its setting through a conservation zone.
February 5, 2018 . . . UPDATE on Treetops Development From the Architects: HRI Munro. . . "Preliminary imagery of our new Treetops lodges near Culloden, part of a new visitor / restaurant project currently in the planning process. Each elevated lodge will provide luxury space for 2-4 visitors, a secluded pinewood setting and an outside hot tub!"
Treetops Riding Stables wants to convert their rural property into 14 holiday chalets, add a 100 person restaurant and several outbuildings. This project is within the 2015 Conservation Area and within the Battlefield Boundary! This is just "down the street" from the entrance to the Battlefield. When this project comes up for public comment...we will let you know!!! Read the planning documents See the map
This petition is addressed to David Fraser Sutherland, Kirkwood Homes Ltd. and Historic Environment Scotland
The Admin and members of GSDC, and all who sign this petition are very concerned that this land will disappear under houses and pavements; thus creating an irreparable scar on Culloden Moor and ultimately will generate disrespect towards those who died and lie buried under its unforgiving moorland. The building of 16 luxury houses at Viewhill farm would convert the existing agricultural land use to suburban, subdivided parcels. Probable widening and extensions of roads accessing this property do not comply with the Culloden Muir Conservation Area. If allowed, this development will affect the area in a dramatic, negative way. Increased traffic, street lighting, issues with drainage and unsightly rooflines, and increased residential noise will greatly affect the Battlefield experience. The area will lose its ability to convey a sense of historical and cultural significance, as a memorial, in which to sit and contemplate, as a place of connection for millions of people around the world.
Petition letter to David Sutherland, Directors at Kirkwood Homes Ltd and Historic Environment Scotland ". . . We feel, especially with all the media and public interest we are generating, that taking up such a course could potentially bring you great acclaim and honours. If you were to donate the land to the National Trust for Scotland, or another charity of equal standing, we assure you that we would make as much of that story, as we have done with the potential desecration of the land by building houses on it."
November 3, 2017: Statement from Group to Stop Development at Culloden click on headline to read The Group to Stop Development at Culloden is aware that the 16 house building development at the Viewhill Farm site is now in the amended planning stage. We continue to be totally opposed to this development which sits just 400+ meters from the Culloden Battlefield Enclosure and is where the last pitched battle on British soil took place.
Map created by Historic Scotland to indicate the area of historical importance at Culloden Battlefield. Note that Viewhill Farm is in black and in the protected area!
Map of the 2015 Culloden Muir Protection Area indicating that the battle took place over a much wider area. Note that Viewhill Farm is in this protected area!
WHAT IS THIS ALL ABOUT. . .
In 2011, an Inverness property developer presented plans to Highland Council for a 16 unit housing development at Viewhill, just 400+ metres from Culloden Battlefield.
The proposed development was rejected by Highland Council. The Developer appealed. The matter was then decided by a Government Appointed Reporter who ruled in favour of the Developer.
This Group was formed to protest the plans to build the 16 houses. We gathered information, data, maps and legislative references which left no doubt as to the historical significance of the battlefield and the area beyond and, its importance on a National and International level.
The new designated Protection Area of 2015 enlarged the protected zone but does not include Viewhill as permission to build was granted in 2014.
Building houses on that site is deeply disrespectful. It is part of a war grave.
The building of 16 houses at Viewhill converts the existing agricultural land use to suburban, subdivided parcels. Possible widening and extensions of roads accessing this property do not comply with the Culloden Muir Conservation Area and if allowed will further damage the area. This is not an appropriate use for this land.
We need to protect that area for future generations. It was a pivotal battle in British history and is of huge international interest and it is incumbent on us to protect it. “The battle actually covered a far greater area than that which the National Trust owns and runs.” HC Ken Gowans
"Culloden is an incredibly sensitive site. The site is very important to a lot of people...it's almost a place of pilgrimage. There's a particular aspect to that landscape that you could quite easily destroy by building something that was unsuitable for that environment.” Tony Pollard
We wish to inform you all that there is currently work being done at Viewhill - site of the proposed 16 houses. The developer is in the process of demolishing farm buildings - these demolitions are in compliance with conditions set by the Scottish Government's Reporter when planning permission was given.. While huge strides have been gained in the protection of the battlefield with the new larger area map of 2015, protection does not include Viewhill Farm. Unfortunately, the developer had already been given permission to build the 16 homes
The developer is proposing amendments to the original planning application and it is the hope of this group that concerned Highland Councillors and the public will be given every opportunity to comment.
We have been extremely vocal against any houses being built on the area of the Battlefield since the beginning of January 2014. Our position has not changed. Expect us to be vocal. We will keep members updated as we continue to evaluate the situation.
Developer Master Plan
See what Culloden Battlefield might look like if development is allowed to take place! A video by a member of the Scottish Diaspora now living in Australia.
A video by GSDC member Paul Jamieson on the 270th anniversary of the Battle of Culloden. The video starts around 6am on the commemoration Saturday after he spent the night walking the Battlefield. It snowed and rained most of the evening and was still overcast. The march and service at the central Cairn and afterwards the patriots departed but some stayed on meeting and greeting old and new friends...
Culloden Lament... 5th October 2016 by Charlie McAulay Robertson
Two years and more have past since the news was broken. Houses to be built on Culloden moor and then the world it was outspoken. Yes, people from around the globe just could not understand. What does posses those corporate minds, that they would desecrate our sacred land. New laws were passed by government that would give it more protection. Which meant to us that there would be consultation before any house erection. But those unscrupulous business men with there eyes set on the brass. Find loopholes in everything, even the laws that the government pass. So here we are today and the problems are still looming. And believe me when I say, Scotland it should be fuming. They want to wipe away our history, while all we can do is lament. As they cover it up with houses aye, tar macadam, bricks an cement.
Listen to Ted Christopher sing "Freedom's Flame" written by Ted for the Culloden Commemoration
Blàr Chùil Lodair, 16 an Giblean 2016. Tha na faireachdainnean agam an-diugh a’ sìneadh eadar irioslachd agus pròis, irioslachd a thaobh an urraim a thug sibh dhomh cuimhne a ghleidheadh air na Gàidheil cliùiteach a thuit ann an Cogadh nan Seumasach, agus pròis a thaobh an dleastanais a bhuilich sibh orm a bhith a’ riochdachadh Comunn Gàidhlig Inbhir-Nis aig Seirbhis Cuimhneachaidh Blàr Chùil Lodair. Le carragh-cuimhne air ar beulaibh agus raon uaigneach tiamhaidh fo ar comhair, tha sinn uile mothachail air an tuiteamas seo a tha a’ sìoladh sìos thugainn thar nan linntean bhon dearbh latha sa’ Ghiblean 1746. Gu deimhinnte ’s e droch latha a bh’ ann, airson Gàidheal air gach taobh dhen t-strì agus mar sin, tha cothrom againn a-rithist an-diugh cuimhne ùrachadh air na daoine foghainteach a chaill am beatha aig Cùil Lodair agus an comharrachadh as ùr.
Gaelic Society Chief, Prof Hugh Cheape, addresses the gathering at the 2016 Memorial Service and Mgr. Maoilios Caimbeul reads ‘Latha Chùil-Lodair’ / ‘Culloden Day’ by Iain Ruadh Stiùbhart.
'Presenting' or 'lining' is very much part of Gaelic Culture. The presenter sings the line, the congregation sings the line after him. Here is a video of the remembrance service at Culloden.
April 15, 2016: National Trust for Scotland On the 16th April 1746 the Battle of Culloden took place on Drumossie Muir, near Inverness. The battle lasted less than an hour and saw Prince Charles Edward Stuart’s Jacobite army defeated by a Government army led by William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland.
Over 18,000people have signed our on-line petition, including Sir Kenneth Calman, former Chairman of the National Trust for Scotland, Outlander author Diana Gabaldon, Dr. Tony Pollard, Director of the Centre for Battlefield Archaeology at Glasgow University, Historian Chris Haines MBE and many, many others who are making a statement against the development!
As of February 2015 the petition is no longer active but remains a strong statement regarding keeping development away from Culloden Battlefield!
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