Planning application shows hopes for toilets and seasonal camping site at Harlaw reservoir to curb antisocial behaviour
The planning application comes after months of outrage at continued littering and antisocial behaviour exhibited at sites in the Pentland Hills and nearby Balerno and Currie, as reported by the Edinburgh Evening News in October.
Proposals for a seasonal campsite to help mitigate damage to Harlaw reservoir and its surrounding landscape were previously disclosed in a detailed report circulated to Edinburgh city councillors and seen by the Evening News.
This cited key areas of concern as larger groups of visitors frequented the site, “leaving significant amounts of litter, including human waste, sanitary items and toilet paper.”
There were also concerns that campers swimming in the reservoir were disrupting those who pay to fish at Harlaw reservoir.
The outcry over improper parking around the site and irresponsible camping led Jessica Morgado, senior natural heritage officer at Pentland Hills Regional Park to file a planning application with Edinburgh City Council for a set of public toilets to be erected on the site, as well as a seasonal campsite to run between March and October of each year.
According to the planning application filed in mid-November, this popular spot in the Pentland Hills has been enjoyed by locals and visitors peacefully for years - but is now threatened by the influx of visitors heading to Harlaw reservoir on sunny weekends.
Documents included in the planning application indicate that the proposed camping areas would be dotted on the north east side of the reservoir to ‘allow 8-10 groups to camp responsibly’, with NatSol toilets supplied nearby for campers in turn.
The proposal also states that there would be a small charge applied to those looking to camp at Harlaw, which would pay for employment of a warden to monitor site activity.
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers.
If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.