PLANS going back 15 years to develop land in Dunfermline can't go ahead because of Fife Council's "unreasonable" demands, it's been claimed.

The first application to build homes on just over a hectare at Masterton Farm, off Masterton Road, was tabled in November 2008 but work has never started.

And it's argued the latest proposals from Mrs Linda Tinson can't proceed if the council insist on £650,000 of roadworks being done before anyone moves into a house.

Her planning agent, Joe Fitzpatrick, said: "This effectively renders development of the site unviable."

The dispute has rumbled on for years. Outline planning permission to develop the site was granted in April 2009, it expired in 2014 without work taking place.

Further submissions were granted in 2012, 2015 and 2019. At this stage, the number of houses to be built hasn't been disclosed.

Mr Fitzpatrick confirmed that his client has been "forced to seek repeated renewals of planning permission for the site".

He said: "The reason for this is that, over the years since the original approval, my client has engaged with numerous developers who have at first recognised the potential of the site, only to withdraw when carrying out a full financial appraisal."

The agent explained that "by far the greatest impact on viability" relates to the condition for the road improvements, which is estimated to cost £650,000.

The council have granted planning permission in principle subject to conditions and a legal agreement to ensure the provision of developer contributions for affordable housing, education, strategic transport intervention measures and play provision.

Condition three states that, before the first house is occupied, Masterton Road must be upgraded from the front of the site to the junction with Skylark Road.

This includes the provision of kerbs, a minimum carriageway width of 5.5 metres and a two-metres wide footway on the west side of the road.

Mr Fitzpatrick said it was "unreasonable" to expect his client to pay for this work when there is another development site that would benefit from the upgrades and should also be contributing to the cost.

He has submitted an application to the council, arguing a number of points but mainly that his client should not have to comply with condition three, or a condition relating to the developer contributions.

The agent highlighted the local authority's own guidelines that said such planning obligations should not be sought for development on derelict land or brownfield sites.

The site contains a number of disused agricultural buildings and he said: "The case is clear that under the council’s own criteria, the site at Masterton Farm fully satisfies the definition of a brownfield site and that furthermore, in accordance with supplementary guidance, the proposed development of the site is exempt from a requirement to make any planning obligation payments."

The council said the site is "part brownfield and part greenfield" and have defended their stance, stating that the conditions are in accordance with their policies and the local development plan.