Letter: Tackling Bowmore rugby

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During the past few days I have been answering emails and phone calls from concerned constituents about the recent building work in Bowmore.

It has seen a footpath being built over one side of Bowmore’s rugby pitch.

I had a meeting with the Islay rugby team and heard directly about their concerns.

I have also contacted Argyll and Bute Council’s planning department numerous times, and, on September 27, I spoke with James Macintyre of Macleod Construction and made my views very clear on this matter.

The potential new 3G pitch and footpath are much needed and more than welcome.

That said there have clearly been large failings in the consultation process and this must not happen in future.

In order to find the best way forward MacLeods will need to move rugby posts to new positions, using new sleeves and with an Islay Rugby presence during the operation.

Leveling off of the west side of the pitch must be carried out using good soil with a view to extending the level pitch by several meters.

Material for a ryelock fence should be provided by MacLeods and/or others, and permissions given for construction of a standard fence.

This fence should run between the timber fence at the rear of the housing estate and the timber fence at the car park, in a line running along the pitch side edge of the new path across the rugby pitch.

This should make the extended area as near dog-free as possible and solve the serious fouling problem which unfortunately continues to exist.

Regardless of how many of my fellow Ileachs feel, about where this pathway has been built and the lack of proper communication, the hard working front line workers, of Macleods are only following orders and any hostility directed towards them is unhelpful and unfair.

If these changes and additions to the building works are made all parties will be happy and Islay will have a terrific rugby pitch.

Bowmore locals will have a new foot path and Islay can hopefully look forward to the prospect of a wonderful new 3G pitch in the future.

Despite the upset caused by this issue it has been great to hear from so many of my constituents.

Councillor Alastair Redman,