COLVEND AND SOUTHWICK COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETING
Tuesday 10 May 2022 at 7 p.m. in Colvend Public Hall
PRESENT: Derek Roan (DR) – Chair; Simon Pain (SWP) - Vice Chair; Mark Parry (MP) – Treasurer; Gordon Webster (GW) – Secretary; Elected CCs: John Coates (JC), Ken Coltart (KC), Matthew Pumphrey (MPu); Local Cllrs: David Stitt (DS): Associate Member: Sue Gourlay (SG); Martin Rosindale (MR) – Kippford Association representative; Gwen Coates (GC) – Minute Secretary
MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC: John Rowland (JR); Elsbeth and Peter Shaw (ES, PS) on behalf of Sandyhills Protection Group (SPG)
APOLOGIES: Elected CCs: Kristine Filer (KF), Tracey Roan (TR); Co-opted CCs: Fay Gourlay (FG); WPC Alison Blacklock (AB)
LOCAL COUNCIL ELECTIONS, 5 MAY 2022
Prior to approval of the minutes, DR congratulated DS and Ian Blake (IB) on being re-elected, noted and welcomed Kim Lowe (KL) as a new councillor, thanked Rob Davidson (RD), who did not stand for re-election, for his previous services to CSCC, and noted that, although not elected, MPu was to be congratulated for standing for office. (IB,KL and RD were not present at this meeting.)
APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETINGS
Adoption of the Minutes from 7 April 2022
With no amendments, the minutes were approved by DR and seconded by SWP.
MATTERS ARISING FROM THE AGENDA
- DGC Visitor Management Plan – As IB was not present, there was no one available to speak about this matter. To be considered at the next meeting. (IB)
- Increase awareness of Colvend Primary School. As FG was not present, there was no one available to speak about this matter. To be removed from future agendas until further information is available from FG. (FG)
- Local Place Plan update. Because timing in relation to this issue is not critical at present, SWP’s time has been spent on more pressing issues, including a focus on Homes for Ukrainian refugees. To be considered at the next meeting. (SWP)
- Condition of the Coastal Path near the old monument. This issue is still awaiting advice from D&G council. (SWP/FG)
- Electric Vehicle Charging Points update. JC reiterated the various locations under consideration – at Rockcliffe main car park, Colvend Public Hall, Kippford Village Hall. SWP said he thought Rockcliffe car park was probably the best option because of its proximity to a substation, which ensured appropriate electrical capacity. There is insufficient capacity for a fast charger at Colvend Public Hall. JC said that he had not had a response from the Kippford Association regarding this matter. MR noted that the chair of said association had recently resigned and that he (MR) would take this issue forward with the Kippford Association. No decision was made about this. To be considered at the next meeting. (JC)
- Murdo Fraser fly-tipping consultation update. MPu suggested that it would not be productive for CSCC to do anything further regarding the consultation. He agreed to keep an eye on relevant developments and add it to a future agenda if and when appropriate. To be removed from future agendas unless MPu considers it necessary to include. (MPu/DR/JC)
- DGC request to mend potholes in Rockcliffe area. Members noted that potholes at Rockcliffe and by the Clonyard have been filled. No information was available about the pothole at Kippford. DS is to continue following this up. To be considered at the next meeting. (DS)
- Possible new Treasurer candidate(s). (DR/MP). This topic widened into a few council role changes:
MP to give up his role as Treasurer at the AGM and also stand down as a community councillor.
DR to give up his role as Chair at the AGM but wishes to remain a councillor and is also interested in taking on the role of Treasurer.
SG to relinquish her correspondence role effective immediately and remain an associate member of the council.
DR wondered if SWP might be interested in taking on the role of Chair. SWP noted that if he was elected as Chair, he would have to scale down his work on CSCC projects and managing the Information Centre. It was emphasised that a good deal of expertise, in terms of knowledge and familiarity with processes, is required to successfully obtain grant funding for projects and that this was something SWP particularly excelled at.
The issue of replacements for the Chair and Treasurer roles to be considered by all members and to be formally discussed at next meeting in June so that elections for these roles can take place at the AGM, which it was agreed would be held in July. To be considered at the next meeting. (DR/SWP/MP and all members)
- Confirm AGM date, likely to be Thursday July 7. To be confirmed at the next meeting. (DR/SWP)
GW said the police sent an email in lieu of their attendance at tonight’s meeting but that there were no issues to report.
MP informed members that total funds were £8,969, most of which (apart from just over £200) were unrestricted funds. He listed a number of payments made in the last month. DR suggested that the amount of unrestricted funds was a substantial sum. MP noted that unrestricted funds can be used to support projects. SWP said that it is usual for CSCC to attempt to get funding for projects but that such funding does not usually cover 100% of costs. The unrestricted funds are thus important to support the range of CSCC projects and activities where additional funding is required. Viewpoint replacement signs and the Colvend Family Gala are examples where additional funding is required.
Prior to the meeting, SWP submitted a report online detailing progress on each of the projects, including some of the issues under the Community Involvement section below. This document is available on the CSCC website. The following is a summary of issues discussed at the meeting.
- Coastal Path: Gutcher’s Isle Interpretation Board. Having received confirmation from Historic Environment Scotland and the D&G Regional Archaeologist that there are no objections to installing the board, the work will be completed as soon as volunteers are available. Once this last board is installed the project is therefore complete.
- Coastal Path: Viewpoint signs replacement. SWP indicated that he was not confident that the application, to the D&G Region wide Community Fund, for £1000 would be successful and that CSCC may have to self-fund this project in part or in full. He suggested that a decision on this should be able to be made at the June meeting. (SWP)
- Coastal Path: Replacement of boardwalk bridge and footpath sign at Port O’Warren. SWP noted that both the boardwalk bridge and signpost will be replaced during the summer but that volunteers may need to install the signpost. (SWP)
- Kippford Tidal Flaps. SWP said he has had discussions with the local council but they had not responded further. He noted that there were about 15 discharge points along the road at Kippford, all of which needed to have tidal flaps. DS agreed to ask the council for an update. (SWP/DS)
- Improvements to communal bin areas. SWP noted that, as a result of the increased number of bins, the communal bin areas at both Colvend and Portling are rather chaotic. He suggested, if space is available, that paving slabs might be laid to make the sites tidier and the bins easier to manoeuvre. No decision on this was taken. (SWP)
- Colvend Hall generator connection testing. SWP suggested relocating the cable so that it has a dedicated place to be stored. He also emphasised the importance of getting the generator tested. (DR)
- MR noted that an information board at Kippford (located next to the Ark tea shop) was falling apart and wondered if this could be funded by CSCC. A discussion followed on whether the Kippford Association or CSCC should fund this. DR asked that this issue be put on the Projects list and further discussion about which organisation should fund this should take place at the next meeting. (SWP/MR)
- As noted in the online Project report, an article written for ‘Stress Awareness Month’ by Inspiring Scotland featured a case study about the work being done by CSCC to bring people together. This mentioned the Indoor Sports Club, Knit and Natter sessions, and the Evening talks. SWP reminded members that the Indoor Sports Club is now closed for the summer but that the Knit and Natter sessions are continuing. JC said that he is compiling a database of potential speakers for the Evening Talks that will begin again in October. (SWP/JC)
- Homes for Ukraine – update and proposal for Baron’s Craig Accommodation and Day Centre. SWPexplained that the proposal to offer accommodation at the Baron’s Craig will not be supported by D&G council, essentially because they are prioritising urban centres for housing refugees. However, there is a possibility that a Day Centre at the Baron’s Craig might be feasible. If this did go ahead, as well as the offers of help detailed in the Minutes from April 2022, it might be possible to set up an indoor sports centre using the equipment from the Village Hall Indoor Sports Club, which is closed for the summer months. However, until there is a clear sense that an appropriate number of refugees would be in the area to use this facility, SWP and David Mabbs, the owner of the Baron’s Craig, have decided that it is not sensible to proceed further with this idea. Members also discussed the fact that if numbers were very small, it might be possible to establish an alternative Day Centre at either Colvend or Kippford Village Hall, however there was no further discussion on this. SWP said there was nothing further that CSCC could do at present in regard to accommodation or a Day Centre. However, he noted that there is a possibility that rapid action might need to be taken if, in the future, the Day Centre idea was needed, and that this might not be able to wait until a formal CSCC monthly meeting. DR indicated that, in these circumstances, members would be supportive of any action SWP might need to commit to prior to a formal meeting of the CSCC. (SWP)
- Mother & Baby Film in the Small Hall. As FG was not present at the meeting, no further information was available on this issue. (FG)
- Colvend Family Gala update. SWP said that offers of help have been received to man a bric-a-brac stall with proceeds in support of Ukraine. He said that items gathered and stored in the church manse might be used as there is no church sale this year. He also said that the school was interested to have a role in the Gala, for example pupils producing posters to display in the school Hall. JC will talk to FG about this. The local red squirrel protection group will have a stall and will be sending a red squirrel (costumed individual) along. As well as pupils’ sporting events, an adult tug of war is to take place. Additional funding of just over £248.80 has been applied for from the Stewartry Area Committee to support the event. SWP noted that funding may not be available for future galas so it may be useful to build reserves to cover these. MR noted that the Kippford Association is to hold a party in front of Kippford Village Hall on the day before the Colvend Gala. This will be for residents only. JC to let CSCC have a copy of the programme before the Gala Day on 4 June 2022. JC said that volunteers would be needed in the days prior to the event to help set everything up. (JC)
- 22/0197/SCO Sandyhills proposed development – rolling agenda item. PS gave an update on the activities being undertaken by the Sandyhills Protection Group (SPG). This included the letter sent to D&G planning authorities regarding the required content of the environmental impact assessment (EIA). He welcomed the support of CSCC in relation to their note to the authority giving support to the need for a thorough EIA. Briefings about the issue were sent to those people standing as councillors in the local election on 5 May 2022. An email has been received from the council landscape officer detailing the amount of landscaping issues that might be involved in this potential development. A note has been sent to the council about a Minute of Agreement document between the council and the developer dating back to 1985 and related to the planning application for the original Sandyhills development - essentially to check if the developer (the same as the developer for the current Sandyhills proposal) has been ‘observing their side of the bargain’. He also listed other communications, including the article/letter criticising the development that appeared in a local newspaper. SWP suggested that there might be archaeological areas of interest around the Sandyhills site that might be significant in relation to this proposed development. He suggested the SPG contact the Regional Archaeologist about this. Further discussion in relation to this potential development focused on the dumping of soil on the site and whether this was legal (raised by GW) and the delays in relation to administration and IT in the local planning system. DR thanked PS and ES for the update and asked them to continue to provide these to future meetings. (PS on behalf of SPG)
- Other planning applications and decisions received – nothing contentious noted.
All correspondence has been duly forwarded.
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- SWestrans Transport Strategy – Rockcliffe Bus Shelter. ‘The provision of enhanced Bus Stops/Shelters across the region’ is included in projects able to utilise SWestrans Capital and Revenue funding. There is a need for a bus shelter in Rockcliffe. JC suggested it should be located on the grass bank where the bus actually stops rather than at the formal bus stop opposite. SWP said he would explore this further. He also noted that CSCC might need to contribute to any funding obtained to ensure a quality product is delivered. Members agreed he should go ahead with this. (SWP)
- JC noted that clumps of Japanese Knotweed are appearing all over the area, including on the beach at Rockcliffe and on National Trust (NT) land. It was noted that if it is on NT land, then the NT are responsible for dealing with it to ensure it does not spread. JC agreed to get in contact with the NT and with DS who can raise it with the local council. (JC)
- SWP raised the issue of energy costs in the shop. The shop owner is considering setting up a wind turbine to supply power and wondered whether others might like to help fund such a development and share the power produced. JC said the Village Hall might be interested. DR did not think it was an issue for CSCC but recognised that other local groups might be interested. JC, SWP and DR will discuss this to see if other local groupings, including the Village Hall, might be interested. (SWP, JC, DR)
OUR NEXT MEETING IS ON THURSDAY 2 JUNE 2022 AT 7 P.M. AND IS INTENDED TO BE IN COLVEND PUBLIC HALL UNLESS ADVISED OTHERWISE
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