Can’t see the Pub for the Trees

A Dumfries licensee could lose his licence if he trims the trees surrounding his premises that are shielding it from passing trade, along the busy A76. Ian Mitchell, owner of the town’s historic Auldgirth Inn, has been banned from trimming trees outside the building because nobody knows who the land belongs to.
He told DRAM, “The trees are on land that nobody will lay claim to, but they are getting bigger and bigger each year, and making my business less and less visible. All I want to do is trim them, not cut them down, but I have been told by the council and Transport Scotland that if I do it will constitute a public damage offence, and I’d then lose both my personal and premises licenses.” Ian contacted local Councillor Andrew Wood in a bid to find out who owns the land. But so far the councillor has been unable to get to the bottom of where the responsibility lies. Transport Scotland is also looking into the matter.
“It’s really frustrating because I’ve had customers referred here but they never arrive because they can’t find us,” Ian said. “Other customers who are actually booked in usually always drive past. Business is already very poor because of the current economic climate and I’m being put at a further disadvantage because I’m hidden behind trees. Councilor Wood is looking into the matter, and agrees that it is within everyone’s interest to get the matter resolved.”

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