COLVEND AND SOUTHWICK COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETING
Thursday 7 September 2023 at 7.00 pm in Colvend Public Hall
PRESENT: Chair - Roderick Morriss (RM), Vice Chair – Simon Pain (SWP), Secretary – Gordon Webster (GW), Treasurer – John Rowland (JR); Elected CCs: John Coates (JC), Kenneth Coltart (KC), Kristine Filer (KF), Tracey Roan (TR); Local Cllr - David Stitt (DS); DGC Ward Officer - Scott McMeeken (SM), Minute Secretary – Gwen Coates (GC)
MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC: Sue Gourley (SG), Tom Nichol (TN), Sandyhills Protection Group (SPG) - Peter Shaw (PS) and Peter Hutchison (PH), Laura Jones(LJ).
APOLOGIES: Elected CC - Matthew Pumphrey (MPu); Kippford Association representative - Martin Rosindale (MR); Local Cllr - Ian Blake (IB)
APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETINGS
Adoption of the Minutes from 6 July 2023
With no amendments and no objections from members, the minutes, which were proposed by RM and seconded by SWP.
MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES
- Signage and Sheep Watch scheme update. GW informed members that relevant warning notices have been put up in appropriate locations around the local area. KF has been in touch with the holiday letting agency, Discover Scotland, who have agreed to send such notices to holiday let property owners in the area. To consider at the next meeting. (GW/KF)
- Replacement for Stuart King as CSCC website manager is now becoming urgent. Stuart is keen to hand over the role asap. JR told members that Stephen Kilpatrick, who will take over the role, is confident of being able to rebuild the website on a new platform by the end of September 2023. There was discussion about the cost involved in running the website on the new platform (£12 per month) which was agreed acceptable. This would allow Stephen and one other member of CSCC to have access in order to make changes to the site. To consider at the next meeting. (RM/JR)
- CSCC bank account additional signatories’ update. This issue has now been finalised, although names still need to go on the DGC website and GW said he would inform Dumfries and Galloway Council (DGC) that JR is now the treasurer of CSCC. This item is now closed.
- Openreach Community Partnership Full Fibre for Rockliffe residents – update. GW said that Openreach has completed their proposed viability analysis and are in a position to go ahead with this project in Rockcliffe. He said he will keep local residents informed about what action to take and when. He also said that he will invite Stephen Chambers the Openreach Regional Engagement Manager to a future CC meeting where he will be able to give an overview of the project and take questions from members or local residents. Further discussion took place about the importance of this potential development in light of the announcement that the traditional analogue phone system (PSTN) will be switched off by Openreach in 2025. This will force customers to use either digital services via a broadband connection or a mobile phone to make or receive phone calls. TN raised issues about the problems this will cause for areas that have poor mobile phone signals and are dependent on traditional landlines. He has had extensive dealings with the authorities about his own problems regarding this issue and, on the basis of his own experience in dealing with this, he is happy to advise others. To consider at the next meeting. (SWP/GW)
GW forwarded the police report to members prior to the meeting. There were no significant local issues raised. An imitation weapon was found in the Barean Loch. There is a current police campaign about ATM theft and the report offers advice on how to reduce the likelihood of being a victim of such action. PS raised an issue on behalf of a resident of Sandyhills who is finding that caravans are parking in front of the entrance to their property and are leaving rubbish behind. There was some discussion about what might be done in the circumstances and whether this should be referred to the police.
There is a link to the Police Report at the bottom of this page.
The treasurer’s report was forwarded to members prior to the meeting. There is £9,515.78 in the bank. RM asked that a copy be attached to the minutes. JR has now taken over the position of treasurer. Members asked that their appreciation for the work done by Mark Parry, the previous treasurer be recorded. David Lennon as the new ‘Examiner of Accounts’ was formally proposed by RM with no dissenters. GW will inform DGC of this. Members asked that their appreciation of the work of James Anderson as the previous Examiner of Accounts be recorded.
SPEED LIMIT ON THE COLVEND TO ROCKCLIFFE ROAD
The topic of a 30 mph speed limit on this road was raised at a recent Community Assets Community Conversation event in Colvend. Members raised a range of issues both in favour of and against this suggestion, mostly based on their own experiences of using the road. RM noted that the initial response from members was that they were not in favour of such a limit but that CSCC would be happy to consider further evidence and a wider range of views at a later CSCC meeting.
Prior to the meeting, SWP submitted a report online detailing progress on a number of the projects and the community involvement initiatives mentioned below. This document is available on the CSCC website. The following is a summary of additional issues discussed at the meeting.
- Viewpoint sign – Torrs Hill. SWP and TR are working on progressing this project. Members discussed the importance of maintaining the condition of the Coastal Path. They agreed that SWP should contact the Community Payback team to request their help in maintaining the path in 2024. (SWP) This project is on-going
- Kippford Nature Reserve Memorial Shelter – funding update. SWP emphasised the hope that CSCC gets the maximum grants available from the National Lottery Community Fund and from thee Robin Rigg Community Fund in order for the project is to go ahead without further delay or the need to apply for funds from alternative sources. (SWP) This project is on-going.
- Core path 20 leaflets. A decision on the grant application has not yet been received. (Subsequent update – on 12/9/23 the CC received confirmation of £1000 grant from the Galloway association of Glasgow). (SWP) This project is on-going.
- War Memorial renovation update. RM said he was hoping for a satisfactory outcome for this project before Remembrance Sunday. SWP noted that the worst outcome of current grant and funding activity would be that CSCC would have to contribute about £276. (RM/SWP) This project is on-going.
- Rockcliffe Bus Shelter. JC said that the situation was ‘evolving slowly’. All parties involved – CSCC, the National Trust and the bus company – have agreed the location and design of the shelter and the work that needs doing. However, no time-frame has yet been agreed. (JC/SWP) This project is on-going.
- Portling Defibrillator. Members agreed that the funding application for this project should continue. LJ asked about the possibility of a defibrillator at Southwick. SWP said there is a need for one at this location but that it is not part of the current project plans. There was discussion about the problematic power supply in this location and how this might hinder the use of such a machine. (SWP) This project is on-going.
- Tree planting maintenance. A number of members have been assisting with this. RM offered thanks to all those who have helped. (GW) This project is complete.
- Sandyhills beach cleaning. RM offered thanks to Janet Schonhut and all those involved in the Sandyhills beach cleaning activity. This project is complete.
- Ground maintenance at Nelson’s Grave update. JC has cleared the weeds and placed a weed mat down. He has re-covered the ground with shells but suggests more shells are needed to enhance the look of the site. KF, with help from RM, will work together to get shells to the site. (JC/KF) To consider at the next meeting.
- Restart dates for Indoor Sports Club, Knit and Natter, Evening Talks. SWP informed members that the Indoor Sports Club will start again on Tuesday 3 October 2023 and will be held weekly from 7 pm. He also noted that the Knit and Natter group will start again on Thursday 14 September 2023 and will be held at Clonyard House Hotel from 1.30 to 3.30 p.m. JC said four Evening Talks will be held - in November 2023, January, February and March 2024. Dates and topics to be confirmed later. (SWP/JC)
- 22/0197/SCO Sandyhills proposed development – rolling agenda item. PS explained to members the information he has received about a new planning application for a public car park (of 200 spaces) at Sandyhills. This is in addition to a previous proposal put forward by the same applicant to greatly expand the existing site, including a similar sized car park. PH summarised previous information he had provided on behalf of SPG to CSCC about this latter application. An environmental impact assessment (EIA) was requested by the planning authority. It is believed that an EIA has been submitted and decided upon but neither the EIA nor the decision by planners is available to view. A further application (23/1711/CLE), for a Certificate of Lawfulness from the same applicant has been submitted. This is a complicated process. DSinformed members that the planning response time frames are long. He agreed to contact the planning authority to establish clearly what the ‘Certificate of Lawfulness’ actually means. It was suggested that MPu (who was unable to attend this meeting), given his legal background, be asked for his views. JR suggested, given that time is of the essence, CSCC write to the planning authority stating that as we don’t have sufficient information to make a decision, CSCC request a hold on any further development until it has more detailed information about plans. Members were clear that as a statutory consultee, CSCC cannot give a considered view until it is provided with sufficient information. RM assured PS that SPG has the full support of CSCC and that a letter to DGC will be sent advising of its view. MPu will be asked to draft this letter. SWPsuggested that a public consultation meeting be held to inform local residents of the issues involved in this planning application and that given the urgency this will not wait until the next scheduled CC meeting. On behalf of members, KF thanked PS for the work he has under taken in relation to this issue. (RM/MPu) To consider at the next meeting.
- Resilience Plan Review. Julian Stanning (JS), a member of the public who is managing the review, has sent out information about what needs to be updated. (JS)
- Local Place Plan (LPP) update. At the beginning of this evening’s meeting, SWP handed out a questionnaire (Topic Priority Exercise) to those present about what they saw as priorities for the LPP. Completed questionnaires were collected in at the end of the meeting. SWP noted the disappointing response rate from local residents to the survey sent out earlier – only about 10% have responded. He noted that Colvend School has been guaranteed another year but its existence is then in doubt. He has met with the head teacher to discuss issues and potential actions, for example to reduce the cost of running the school. It was noted that some ideas, such as use of the school building for other activities might conflict with the activities run in the village hall. Also suggested was the possibility of having a branch library in the school. However, after further investigation it was noted that there were only 39 people in the local area registered with the library service and, in the last six months, only six have borrowed books. The headteacher requested that she be occasionally invited to CSCC meetings to enable her to give feedback about on-going developments at the schools. SWP said that once key issues for the LPP have been identified, a community event to discuss these will be organised. (SWP) To consider at the next meeting.
- In relation to cycle emergency box in the forest, SWP noted that repair kits had been used or removed. Members agreed to him using funds to purchase items needed to replace those missing.
- PS informed members that Sandyhills residents raised complaints about buses idling with engines on outside of the car park and near to residential properties, cars parking and blocking residents access, vegetation growth hiding yellow lines
- SM noted that the DGC will shortly be consulting on a new parking strategy. He will let members know of the dates once these are released.
- TR told members that, due to pressure of work, she no longer wishes to run the CSCC Facebook page. SWPwill ask on local WhatsApp groups if anyone is willing to take over this role. RM thanked TR for the work she had done in relation to this role.
- JC noted that the information sign concerning the Core Path on White Loch Lane is completely illegible. SWPsaid he was aware of this and was looking into the costs involved in replacing it.
OUR NEXT MEETING IS ON THURSDAY 12 OCTOBER 2023 at 7:00PM IN COLVEND PUBLIC HALL
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