Edmonstone Home Farm plan on hold after developer goes bankrupt

Development on hold. Picture: supplied
Development on hold. Picture: supplied
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MAJOR plans to build hundreds of new homes and a primary school on farmland in the south-east of the Capital have been stalled after the developer went bankrupt.

Blueprints would have seen around 770 houses built at Edmonstone Home Farm, Little France – as well as a new two-stream primary school.

But the proposals, which were due to be discussed by councillors yesterday, have now been delayed after developer Sheratan Ltd went into administration.

Springfield Homes and ESO Bank – Sheratan’s major creditor – told city chiefs they were now taking the plans forward, but requested more time to make changes to the application.

In a letter to councillors, they argued the handover would “have a positive impact on what is delivered and when it is delivered”.

They added: “Springfield is a major house builder delivering homes and the infrastructure needed by local authorities and communities across Scotland.

“We specialise in taking large sites on the whole journey from planning to the point where our customers are moving into new homes. We are in for the long haul.”

It is understood any new planning application will retain the basic features of the old plans – including delivering new homes and a school.

A previous commitment to set aside £12 million for the construction of a new Craigmillar High School will also remain in place.

Developers insist the secondary – which would replace the existing Castlebrae High – would be a “city-wide centre of scientific excellence”, scheduled for completion in 2020.

Sheratan’s original scheme would have seen roughly 70 per cent of the Edmonstone Home Farm site reserved for green space, including extensions to the cycling network which would join up routes between Craigmillar, Little France and the new housing. Land was also set aside for a “neighbourhood shop and health centre”.

But their blueprints were recommended for refusal by officials, who argued there was “no justification for the development”.

And before the scheme was set to go before full council yesterday, it was knocked back by the development management committee on June 22.

The land at Edmonstone Home Farm was gifted to the council by Sheratan more than ten years ago under terms that restrict what the local authority can do with it.

The company had hoped to buy the site back if planning permission was secured.

John Moore, who owns Sheratan and operates out of the Isle of Man, could not be reached for comment at the time of going to press. It is not known why his company folded.