Agenda and minutes

Planning, Protective Services and Licensing Committee - Wednesday, 28 June 2023 2:30 pm

Venue: By Microsoft Teams

Contact: Fiona McCallum Tel. No. 01546 604392 

No. Item




Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Daniel Hampsey, Mark Irvine and Liz McCabe.




There were no declarations of interest.



Report by Regulatory Services and Building Standards Manager


The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting.  In line with recent legislation for Civic Government Hearings, the parties (and any representatives) were given the options for participating in the meeting today.  The options available were by video call, by audio call or by written submission. 


For this hearing the Applicant, Ailsa Griffiths, opted to proceed by way of audio call and she joined the meeting by telephone.


The 3 Objectors, Dawne Cervantes, Mark Gunston and Kate Clayton opted to proceed by way of video call and joined the meeting by Microsoft Teams


The Chair invited the Licensing Standards Officer to speak to the terms of the report.  Thereafter he outlined the procedure that would be followed and invited the Objectors to speak in support of their Objections.




Dawne Cervantes


Ms Cervantes advised that the property in question was a Victorian building with no sound proofing and her objection was based on her lived experience.  She said that the property below her was used as an Airbnb and her lived experience had been a nightmare at times.  She said she taught at the local primary school and was part of the island’s Emergency Response Team which involved shift work at times.  Her lived experience was that most people that turned up to Airbnbs were in party mode and had no consideration for local people going about their everyday lives.  She commented on hearing that there would only be 4 people in this property, but she knew that regularly additional people would turn up along with dogs and children.  They would turn up in party mode and with no sound proofing this was incredibly distressing to her.  She advised that there was a very small, shared garden for 4 flats and there were incidences of dogs running around.


She advised that despite information packs about recycling, she had lost count the number of times she had to empty glass out of the bins.  Glass had to be taken to the nearby recycling depot on the island.  She acknowledged that some people that came were peaceful and fine but as a single women, when people arrived in fully party mode at 11 pm, she was not inclined to knock on their doors.  She said that was why she had objected to this application.  She said her preference would be for a long term lease but the Applicant did not want to do that.  She said she would have no objection to a long term lease and commented that there was a huge need for long term lets on the island.  She said that anyone you spoke to about Airbnbs had their own lived nightmare.


There were no questions for Ms Cervantes.


Mark Gunston


Mr Gunston said he would reinforce what Ms Cervantes had said.  He referred to the objections made in respect of the previous application considered by the Committee, and said that pretty much everything that had been said at that hearing related to this application.  The main difference was that related to a residential street and not neighbours in the same building.  He advised that he lived in the village and that he was objecting on behalf of his brother who had a flat within the building.  He advised that the building was totally unsuitable for Airbnb and should not be a consideration as the walls were paper thin.


He said that Kilchattan Bay was a small community and that he loved living here.  He knew all his neighbours and he did not have any Airbnbs in the building he lived in.  He said that if anyone ever wanted to do anything like put up a shed up or re-tile, they always contacted their neighbours to run it by them.  He advised that as far as he was aware the person that lodged the application did not at any time inform the other people in the building of her intentions.  He said that, to him, was not community minded.  He said that he ran a small business renting out kayaks and that he welcomed visitors.  He said he welcomed residents, and welcomed Airbnbs as long as the building was appropriate and did not negatively impact others that lived there. 


He said his knowledge of people who did live in buildings where there was an Airbnb was that they had a negative experience due to noise.  He advised that unless you lived there you could not monitor how many would stay or how they would behave.  He said there could be lots of partying, lots of noise, and lots of overcrowding.  He advised that a much better alternative would be to do a long term let.  He said there was a shortage of long term lets and that the Applicant would be doing the island a service if she did that.


Members Questions to Mr Gunston


Councillor Armour referred to long terms lets as opposed to Airbnbs and asked how Mr Gunston would feel if this was a long term let and the person that moved in was undesirable in his opinion.  Councillor Armour pointed out that the person would be there permanently rather than on a temporary basis.  Mr Gunston said this was a valid point but not really a good argument for allowing an Airbnb.  He acknowledged that he would not want a disruptive neighbour to be there but the short term let would lead to a continuing stream of people you could not build a relationship with and could not complain to the Council about.


Councillor Blair sought and received confirmation from Mr Gunston that Ms Cervantes currently stayed in his brother’s house and that his brother planned to retire there in the future.  Councillor Blair referred to Mr Gunston listening into the previous hearing, and asked how Mr Gunston went about vetting before Ms Cervantes moved in.  Mr Gunston explained that he had never been in that position as he had never been a landlord.  He said that Ms Cervantes was a family friend that it was  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.