Twitchy observers have reacted frenetically to the news that an oddly named leisure provider has been given “preferred bidder status” to develop 44 acres of land near the Scottish landmark, Loch Lomond.
The company, Flamingo Land, which already has a theme park in Yorkshire with the same name, plans to build a hotel, lodges, and “glamping pods” near the famous loch, as well as retail facilities and adventure activities.
A Flamingo Land spokesperson specifically stated: “It will not be a theme park,” yet the news triggered uproar on social media regardless, and already more than 30,000 people have signed a petition to block the bid. The central objection among petitioners appears to be the name “Flamingo Land” and its connotations to George Michael.
However, the Scottish Campaign for National Parks and Friends of Loch Lomond Trust have remained relaxed about the development. SCNP director, James Fraser, said: “Let’s face it, there are unfortunate connotations with the name Flamingo Land. But if they had been called something like ‘Forest Trail’ this wouldn’t have elicited anything like the heat.
“I completely understand why so many people have been alarmed at what’s being proposed. But I think that many people have reacted without being aware of the history of this site.”
“I completely understand why so many people have been alarmed at what’s being proposed. But I think that many people have reacted without being aware of the history of this site. It comprises three parcels of land which had previously been in industrial use and which had only itself been re-generated recently to create a small park and trees beside the water.”
The site is in any case several hundred yards away from the loch and would be obscured by trees. While the application already stipulates that the name “Flamingo Land” must not be featured anywhere in the vicinity.