Richard Lochhead

Moray SNP News



Richard Lochhead MSP has expressed concern after speaking to local residents who have been receiving speculative letters from businesses suggesting that their homes may be compulsory purchased in connection with the project to dual the A96.

Constituents made Mr Lochhead aware of the letters they were receiving when he attended the public exhibition at Elgin Town Hall on Monday 19th June.  Those who raised this with the MSP were clearly upset and alarmed at receiving a letter which suggested their home may be under threat of compulsory purchase.

Whilst at the exhibition, Moray’s MSP sought the assurances of Transport Scotland officials that these letters were nothing to do with the project and were simply being issued by businesses to speculatively gather custom.  Transport Scotland made it clear that no decision about the route will be taken until 2018, and as such any discussions around compulsory purchases are completely premature.

Mr Lochhead understands the need for companies to attract business but has called for much more sensitivity given the alarm caused to local residents upon receiving such letters.

Commenting Richard Lochhead MSP said:

“Understandably, residents are alarmed and upset after receiving out of the blue letters suggesting their homes may be compulsory purchased and raising the issue of compensation agreements when we are absolutely nowhere near that stage of the process.   

“Transport Scotland has made it absolutely clear that no decision about the route of the dualled A96 will be taken until 2018 at the earliest, following extensive consultation with local residents, businesses and community groups.

“Letters of this nature have clearly caused a lot of unnecessary stress and anxiety to householders in Moray and I would urge businesses to take a more sensitive approach going forward.  The key message for any of my constituents who may have received a letter like this, is that these letters are not coming from anyone involved in the project and that talk of these issues is totally premature given the route will not be decided for at least another year yet.”