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Battle to build Rosyth park and choose

Published: 12 Jan 2013 09:0027 comments

THERE are plans to build a 500-space park and choose in Rosyth - on one of Scotland's most famous battlefields.

The site to the left of the rail line earmarked for the park and choose facility.

Fife Council said the multi-million pound interchange would be north of the train station and offer commuters the chance to catch a bus or train.

Plans include 500 car parking spaces (including 24 disabled spaces), a bus turning area and bus stances, drop-off facilities, a taxi rank and secure cycle parking.

But the parcel of grassland in question, between the railway line and the A823(M) spur, was also part of the site of the Battle of Pitreavie in 1651.

Believed to be one of the key Scottish battles in Britain's 17th Century Civil War (or War of the three Kingdoms as it is otherwise known), it was a decisive clash in Oliver Cromwell's attempts to quell unrest north of the border.

Historic Scotland included the site on the Inventory of Historic Battlefields, which lists Scotland's 28 most important battlefields, but have not objected to the council's plans.

A council report confirmed, "Inclusion of a site within the battlefield inventory does not confer any new legal restrictions on the area identified by the inventory maps.

"Instead, Historic Scotland assumes that inventory sites will be given more particular consideration in the planning process."

It added, "Although Historic Scotland has offered no objection to the proposals, given the status of the site in the inventory and the potential for some archaeological finds, it is also considered appropriate to require an updated interpretation board to be erected as part of the development through a planning condition."

Councillors at yesterday's City of Dunfermline area committee were also told that "it is considered that there is a justifiable need for this facility to be developed on the site as proposed, even if it is in a countryside location".

Park and choose is designed to cut traffic congestion by encouraging drivers to opt for public transport or car sharing and, unlike the £10 million park and choose facility currently being built at Halbeath, the Rosyth site does include the option of getting on the train.

The report explained, "Cars and buses will enter and leave the site via a three-arm signalised junction on the B980 Queensferry Road.

"This will be located north of the railway line and south of the B980 / A823 (M) interchange.

"Cyclists will enter the site from the north via a cycle track leading from the flyover across the A823 (M).

"Rail users will be able to directly access the site via a ramped access that will link the park and choose facility with the southbound platform, while a pedestrian footbridge will be constructed wholly within the existing station offering further access to the northbound platform."

The council said some earthworks would be required to flatten the land and there would be space for future expansion if it proved to be a success.

The report pointed out that the Scottish Government highlighted the Pitreavie/Rosyth area for a park and choose in their Strategic Transport Projects Review in 2009.

Alternative sites next to Dunfermline Queen Margaret, Dunfermline Town and Inverkeithing rail stations were all looked at by the council and discarded as unsuitable.

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