Andy Murray faces battle with wildlife campaigners over luxury cabin plans
WILDLIFE campaigners have slammed plans to build luxury cabins at a hotel owned by Andy Murray.
The three-time Grand Slam champion has lodged proposals for nine chalets of varying sizes to accomodate more guests at Cromlix hotel in Perthshire.
But the Scottish Wildlife Trust is opposing the plans over fears it could negatively impact the breeding of frogs, toads, and birds.
It said the location of the cabins – close to a pond – was inappropriate.
In a letter to Stirling Council, the trust’s Stirling and Clackmannanshire branch said: “Developments like this are one of the reasons Britain is in the bottom 10 per cent globally for lost biodiversity.
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"This particular pond is important for breeding birds, amphibians (frogs and toads), odonata (damsel and dragonflies), possibly more that we are not aware of.
"If displaced from the hotel pond birds would be unlikely to move to other nearby ponds. We recognise that the grounds are valued as a financial asset — they are beyond value to nature.”
Murray bought the Cromlix in 2013 for £2 million and it is now a five-star hotel with a multi-award winning Albert Roux restaurant.
It was run by a management firm until December when Murray and his wife, Kim, said they would be taking over the running of it.
The trust said it would like to see the cabins located elsewhere and the pond used as a “nature-focused area” for guests.
“With the people will come the dogs, canoes and paddle boards probably leading to the loss of all the waterbirds,” the organisation added.
A design statement submitted to the council by Murray’s architects said the cabins would offer guests a choice of accommodation, from the one bedroom Treetop, two bedroom Lochan and Woodland, to the luxury Retreat Cabin with three bedrooms and an additional two-bedroom guest wing.
The council is due to make a decision on the application by May.