De­lighted park plan­ners feel the Rip­ple ef­fect

Stirling Observer - - FRONT PAGE - Kaiya Mar­jorib­anks

Han­dling the cre­ation of a lochside respite cen­tre for fam­i­lies of young can­cer pa­tients has at­tracted plau­dits for na­tional park plan­ners.

Rip­ple Re­treat, on the banks of Loch Ve­nachar, won two gongs for the of­fi­cials at the Scot­tish Awards for Qual­ity in Plan­ning.

They picked up ac­co­lades in peo­ple’s choice and‘place’cat­e­gory.

Rip­ple Re­treat is a place for fam­i­lies of young can­cer pa­tients in Scot­land en­joy respite from the ev­ery­day real­i­ties of liv­ing with the dis­ease and is run by the char­ity It’s Good 2 Give.

Dur­ing the plan­ning process, the park’s plan­ning au­thor­ity worked with the char­ity high­light­ing the need for a sen­si­tive de­sign as the site is in an area where devel­op­ment is only sup­ported in ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances.

The fi­nal, fin­ished build­ing in­cludes a ‘rip­ple’roof which was in­spired by the water­side set­ting, the rip­ples in the loch and the way they sparkle as they catch the sun.

Co-founder, chair and di­rec­tor of fundrais­ing of It’s Good 2 Give, Lynne McNi­coll, said:“When we were gifted the land for our Rip­ple Re­treat and were ap­pre­hen­sive about ap­ply­ing for plan­ning con­sent. We needn’t have been though as the team at the park were help­ful, sup­port­ive and we re­ally en­joyed work­ing with them on the re­treat plans.

Of­fi­cers re­spon­si­ble for the park’s ru­ral devel­op­ment frame­works also col­lected an award. The frame­works cover ar­eas of East and West Loch Lomond and are aimed at al­low­ing com­mu­ni­ties to in­flu­ence and de­liver ac­tions that im­prove their qual­ity of life and place.

Di­rec­tor of ru­ral devel­op­ment and plan­ning Stu­art Mearns said:“Our pos­i­tive work­ing re­la­tion­ship with Its Good 2 Give demon­strates the ben­e­fits of early en­gage­ment with the ap­pli­cants in the plan­ning process and main­tain­ing that en­gage­ment after the de­ci­sion is made to sup­port such a high qual­ity in the devel­op­ment.”

KeltieWater Hy­dro Scheme, within Drum­mond Es­tate, north of Cal­lan­der, was also short­listed in the part­ner­ship cat­e­gory .

Cel­e­bra­tion Na­tional park plan­ning staff with awards. Left, lay­out of Rip­ple Re­treat mir­rored sur­round­ings

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