A FORMER refuse tip near Steelend is to be transformed into a breeding site for cats and dogs.

Krzysztof Wydra, from Blue Lagoon UK, first applied in September to change the use of a piece of land to allow for kennels, cattery units and a caravan on site, as well as a perimeter fence and an access road.

Fife Council have now approved the request, with a condition that development will commence within three years.

Blue Lagoon UK owns the patch of rough grazing and scrubland north of the B914, sandwiched between two woodlands, which is within the boundary of the old Steelend Colliery.

Maps show the area was later used as a rubbish dump.

A statement submitted on behalf of the applicant by planning agent Peter MacLeod explained: "The purpose of the kennels is a breeding business only, not boarding or daycare.

"All current breeding dogs stay at their currently licensed premises away from the application site (at Fieldfare View in Dunfermline).

"However, the plan is to have all breeding dogs on site for business use in the near future. They are also planning to have breeding cats on site."

He continued: "The application site was bought by the company in March 2021 to expand the dog breeding programme and to give a bigger exercise and training area for our St Bernard’s, Japanese Akitas and Bernese Mountain Dogs.

"The land is just under two hectares and it is without any close residential neighbours, which gives a fantastic opportunity to build kennels with a huge outside area for dogs.

"It is also planned to move the current breeding cattery to the site to expand the ongoing cattery breeding programme – the business breeds Ragdolls, British Shorthairs, Maine Coons and Siberian cats."

The tenant would be Silesia Scotland Ltd. Mr Wydra, and Magdalena Orzeg-Wydra, are company directors and also hold the same positions within Blue Lagoon Ltd. They have been Fife Council-registered licensed breeders since 2016.

While the plans are for a caravan on site, Mr MacLeod added that Defra breeding rules stated that "responsible people should be available on the cattery and kennel 24 hours a day and seven days a week".

He said: "The static caravan is the minimum requirement to cover the social requirements for people taking care of the animals.

"In the longer term, a more permanent facility may be introduced."

On approval of the application, council officers stated that the caravan will be of a temporary nature and should be removed from the site within five years of the date of consent.

The landowners will also be required to improve access points, create a vehicle turning area, provide visibility splays at the road junction, and provide details of external paint finishes to the local authority.

Two letters of objection were received during the consideration process.

These addressed concerns over the principle of the development, noise, and road safety.

Planning officers confirmed that the development would contribute to the viability, sustainability, and diversity of the surrounding rural communities and economy, while a Noise Impact Assessment may be required where significant affects are likely.

Addressing road safety concerns, the Report of Handling stated that 3m x 210m visibility splays, as required by planning consent, would make the proposal compliant with relevant policy criteria.