FRUSTRATED residents are hitting out after several buildings in Cumnock and Doon Valley have now been branded ‘dangerous’ eyesores.

Communities have been left fuming after being forced to watch properties sit abandoned and decaying in the middle of places like Muirkirk and Dalmellington.

It comes as almost 60 derelict units, from churches to busy main streets, were flagged as by East Ayrshire council.

The issue is being treated as ‘significant’ by councillors who are now working on a strategy to tackle the scale of the problem, which has been compared to as ‘eating an elephant’.

It is believed most of the properties are in private ownership with those responsible living elsewhere. Now the lack of investment in the buildings is being blamed on a slump in demand.

Council head of planning Michael Keane called the property market ‘dysfunctional’ and said:“There are fantastic buildings in great locations. You would expect there to be a market but there isn’t.”

Auchinleck SNP councillor Claire Leitch said abandoned buildings are ruining the appearance of areas where council housing has improved.

She said: “It is frustrating for derelict buildings to be sitting in the middle of our communities.”

Earlier in the meeting Rubbish Party Councillor Sally Cogley said the process of dealing with the structures is too slow. A council team was forced to swoop on Glaisnock House in Benston Road in Cumnock to make it secure after complaints.

Officials have also warned the condition of the Dunaskin Heritage site property in Patna continues to ‘deteriorate’.

A report said the council “has tackled an extensive number of derelict and dangerous buildings, removing dangerous structure where appropriate.”