Page last updated at 18:37 GMT, Tuesday, 24 March 2009

'Gaping hole' in heart of community

Julie Logan and Sally Richardson
Julie Logan and Sally Richardson blame developers for ruining their once "thriving hub"

Residents living next to the site of the Caltongate development have claimed it had left a "gaping hole" in their community.

Members of Save Our Old Town spoke out after it emerged the firm behind the plans, Mountgrange, had gone bust.

They said the once "thriving hub" had lost its life since residents were evicted from their homes to make way for the development.

But they also said it would give time for a rethink of the plans.

Julie Logan, 43, who lives in the Canongate, told BBC Scotland: "I am angry because this was a thriving hub and now we have nothing as they have cleared everybody out.

"What has happened to Mountgrange does however give a signal of hope now that there will be breathing space to see what was wrong with this development.

"I think the big gaping hole we have been left with should be landscaped over and put to use until another developer is found."

Mike Easton
This news has made it a happier day for me as now I will have about two years to run my business here without all the recent uncertainty I have experienced
Mike Easton
Fresco

Sally Richardson, 42, who also lives in Canongate, said: "I have had e-mails from all over the world about what could be done with the site. such as allotments to grow vegetables with children.

"The age of greed is over - people have been put out of their homes for this development, now is the time for fulfilling people's needs."

Mike Easton, whose takeaway, Fresco, is to be bulldozed under plans to make way for an entrance into the development, said he was relieved he now had more time to find new premises.

The father-of-three, who has been running the business for four years, said: "For the last six to nine months I have not heard from Mountgrange and so I have been worrying and having sleepless nights over the thought they might just appear one day with bulldozers without any notice.

"So this news has made it a happier day for me as now I will have about two years to run my business here without all the recent uncertainty I have experienced."



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