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Monday, May 10, 1999 Published at 09:41 GMT 10:41 UK

UK Politics

Parking rift over Holyrood site

Holyrood: Site of the new parliament

Council officials in Edinburgh are reported to be preparing to recommend refusal of planning permission for the new Scottish Parliament building at Holyrood.

Vote 99 Special Coverage
They are said to have decided that the plans break council policy and government guidelines by having too many parking spaces.

Scotland on Sunday newspaper reports that the application includes a space for each of the 129 MSPs and six for people with disabilities.

Even though officials are against the application, the building will still go ahead because the Scottish Office qualifies for Crown immunity from planning restrictions.

The paper quotes a council source as saying: "We won't change our view, we think the number of parking spaces is too many.

[ image: Architect Enric Miralles discusses the plans with Donald Dewar]
Architect Enric Miralles discusses the plans with Donald Dewar
"If this were an ordinary development it would be refused planning permission and they would have to appeal - to the Secretary of State (Donald Dewar).

"They (the Scottish Office) don't need planning consent but they would like us to agree to everything they are doing and we can't do that."

Scottish Socialist Party leader Tommy Sheridan has said he will swear allegiance to the Queen, but under protest, when he takes his seat in the parliament.

Mr Sheridan was reported at the weekend to have decided not to pledge allegiance in the oath to become an MSP.

[ image: Tommy Sheridan: No allegiance to Queen]
Tommy Sheridan: No allegiance to Queen
He was elected from the Glasgow regional list and is an ardent opponent of the Royal Family.

Although he says he will make the vow, he plans to swear another oath when the parliament sits for the first time on Wednesday.

This will be a declaration swearing the sovereignty and civil rights of the Scottish people.

Elsewhere in the Sunday press, the Sunday Telegraph reports prominently that a government minister claimed Labour and the Liberal Democrats had "colluded throughout the election campaign".

The minister, who is not named, is said to have told the paper that Scottish Labour leader Donald Dewar spoke on a "regular, if not daily basis" during the campaign, with the Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Jim Wallace.

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