Minutes January 2020

For the first meeting of the year we had a room swelling over twenty people withe the litter pick, park, parking, buses, newsletter plans and information from the Newtongrange Masterplan steering group discussed.

7pm-9pm Tuesday 28th January 2020

Members Present In Attendance
  • Ann Gunn
  • Andrew Marshall 
  • Jeremy Adderley (Chair)
  • June Robertson
  • Jason Ferry
  • Maureen McRae 
  • Linda Anderson
  • Ross Anderson (Minutes Secretary)
  • John Muir
  • Fiona Brooks
  • Liz Wilson
  • Margaret Evans
  • Gillian Cousins (Midlothian Council)
  • PC Brian McGuff
  • Clr. Johnstone
  • Dot Horne
  • Fiona Horne
  • Joanna Dunlop
  • Greta Higginson
  • Sheila Moffat
  1. Welcome and introductions – JA welcomed Clr. Johnstone and the large group of attendees. Apologies received from James Smith (Secretary), Lorna Stephenson. Margaret Evans co-opted nominated by June & seconded by Linda.
  2. Minutes of Previous Meeting/Matters Arising Greta Hegginson and Sheila Moffat addressed the meeting with a plea to NCC for help promoting/contributing the next tidy community event from the Wood in Mayfield to the Welfare Park on Saturday 21st of March “Bryan’s Wood Blitz”. Whats On Newtongrange to post and make sure all on facebook like/share post. The two ladies along with daughter Heather have planted 18 kilos of daffodils around the beds of the Miner statue and have helped improve vast areas. They have also been promised one council staff per six members of the public for the event by Justin Vernon.  Gloves, pincers and lorry to be provided.  Clr Johnstone mentioned cadets involvement in Easthouses and Gorebridge and District Environmental Group (GADEG), Dalkeith Guerrilla Gardeners are good examples and a few hours work can make such a difference to our tow. Please get involved if you can! The state of the Welfare Park and lack of MC maintenance which has been discussed in previous meetings. War memorial is noted ‘planted by community’ (Nov 2019 minutes). Clr Johnstone to note the maintance guide sent by Justin Venton. Fiona Horne advised that we need a confirmed list of definitive council jobs the council will do. We cannot rely solely on volunteers for looking after the village. Clr. Johnstone has arranged a walk-around Welfare Park Friday 14th February 2PM meet at main gates opposite Dean Tavern (all NCC invited) with Justin Venton to include concerns i.e dangerous rusting rails, grass cutting and reneging on previously agreed maintenance of War Memorial. JM to log issue of the rotten clogged up leaves with the council. Justin Venton correspondence 3/2/20 :


    “Land and Countryside Staff at this time a year start at 8 a.m. have a short break after 9 a.m. Lunch is 12 noon to 1.30 and they finish at 3 p.m. Fridays they finish at 1.15 pm and get no lunch break

    In the British Summer time they start at 7.30 a.m. have a short break after 9 a.m. Lunch is 12 noon to 1.30 and they finish at 4.15 p.m. Fridays they finish 1.30 p.m. and get no lunch break

    Any reports of staff sitting in vehicles out with beak and lunch times would be appreciated especially if we can have a vehicle registration number.

    We will check the flooding issue at the park entrance by the astro pitch as requested”.

    AM confirmed that he had written to Mary Smith regarding end of weed killer use – response is still outstanding. (iii) JA double roundabout safety after recent knock down now has repainted markings. 
  3. Police Report Between 26th November 2019 and 27th January 2019 in beat area MS03 – Newtongrange, there were 36 recorded crimes reported, of which 13 to date have been solved. This is a detection rate of 36%. (ii) Items of Note – vehicle break-in and theft to several business premises’ within Butterfield Road on 28th December C.I.D now involved enquiry ongoing (iii) Discussion Points – BM unable to do Lockdown crime event in conjunction with Christmas light switch on . BM liasing with Gillian Cousins regarding a date for future event. BM  felt the C.A.M assessment will not change any procedures with relation to calling /emailing police but will check. (iv) 6th Street/Park Road & environs traffic, parking & anti-social behaviour specifically during school hours were discussed. BM mentioned that Gore Glen P.S are having similar issues with school time issues and police time is limited to patrol over school-hours. BM mentioned that currently it is not yet an offence to park on pavements. Drop kerbs & disabled bay restrictions can be checked by contacting MC. Advised that you need to keep reporting to MC council regarding vehicles parking/sitting on double yellow lines. Email BM photos of repeat offenders. JF to contact Gillian Bathgate/David  Kenny and Joanne Dunlop will speak to Vicky Morgan HT Newtongrange PS regarding a re-introduction of Park Smart Programme. Old swimming school site for parking? (iv) issues to continue for Feb agenda. (v) A question was asked about the perceived rise of children under the influence of drugs perhaps through postal service. BM felt that the issue was mainly alcohol related issues .
  4.  Newsletter Paper newsletter campaign promoting NCC which will catch every resident in Newtongrange over 3 years to be worked up by JA, AM & RA. RA asked for feedback from attendees for what they thought should be included in the issues. RA mentioned two examples Ardgay & District http://ardgayanddistrictcommunitycouncil.org.uk/newsletters/2019-09_No45-Newsletter.pdf and Loch Winnoch https://www.lochwinnoch.org/newsletters/ as good examples to aspire to. RA to add post on website regarding feedback exercise. JA costing up mailing and printing cost. Ross Lyall Newtongrange PS (Community Explorers Group) looking to help with the mailing. We need a bi-fold structure and easy to read 12-14 type minimum. Joanne Dunlop suggested a suggestions box for the library.
  5.  Constitution update GC advised the MC legal were still to rubber stamp our change to constitution to maximum of 16 members. JA/RA to get forms for Linda, Lorna & Ross asap. NCC now has 14 members and GC says we should proceed with current arrangement.
  6.  Website & Social Media If any member is interested in helping JA, JF & RA with this please get in touch?  Members asked to provide pictures and posts if happy to do so. GC to follow up on the opportunty of geting social media training with Richard (MC) currently Moorfoot CC have had support. 
  7. 2019-20 Year Aims for NCC 1) Protecting and improving services:  Newtongrange library JR mentioned her response from Annabel Cavaroli Development Officer MC that the library hour cuts were made from the Customer Services Strategy consultation in 2016. JR worries that the cuts will hinder adult & child literary levels and Clr. Johnstone showed concern about the mining newspapers a legacy from the old institute. She mentioned that the suggestion by Clr. Munro regarding post offices in libraries might is still being considered by councillors. JA asked how we can better keep monitoring the situation? An attendee mentioned they were told that the library will definetely be closing but will this be after possible masterplan alternative? Must to keep library open for the regulars who cannot travel to the hubs. Newtongrange Masterplan 2) Following October 2019 representations from Gareth Davies, AM met with Gareth (all NCC invited at meeting and via email) and agreed to help convene a steering group to gather key stakeholders from across Newtongrange. GD did say this project lead time might be 6 years off. Now GD has asked for mini-stakeholders to look at key sites individually. Clr Johnstone let GD know Linda, June and Fiona wish to be involved in the process. AM advised that stakeholder Rev Gayle Taylor and the  church are making headway with the plans for the new church hall, with potentially provision for new library. (ii) All keen to see action on the former swimming pool site “improve sad situation”, AM intention to get the hoardings down and school parking idea suggested see 3(iv). AM to add latest information to first newsletter. (iii) GD still keen on the idea of building some far of community provision in the old bowling green area of Welfare Park. JR brought up the serious parking issues for such a scheme to the detriment of the park & parking, which would cause problems if a centre. Her main concern was the reduction in green space when our village is growing and needs the green space. I imagine the park was given the Trust protection for that reason. JF mentioned any building in the park must be for community use QE Jubilee Trust 2012 Fielding Trust. JF was concerned that knocking down NCLC will be problematic for Black Diamond Radio and any new Cowden Pavillion style building wll not be big enough to house nursery provion. JF to look at all service use in the centre.  Engaging the community 1) JR to suggest NCC Litter pick date next meeting. Community Explorers Group discussed in relation to Newsletter 4. 4) VE event to be discussed Feb meeting JF. 
  8. Reports Councillors – No report on this occassion. (ii) Treasurer – 40p interest on account. (iii) Health & Social Care – nominations N/A. (iv) Federation of Community Councils – Report from JM in JS absence notes  will be sent along with M-TRAP meeting  for RA to add to website. (v) Planning Applications – JM two properties on 4th Street. 
  9. Correspondence (i)  Lorna’s parking by school discussed in 2. Matters Arising. (ii) JA to report back about NMMS consultation Feb meeting. (iii) JA reminded NCC members that a visit to the FCC Recycling centre is on 12th February.  Disposal of Jubilee Beacon – JF. (ii) Seating in the park – could these be provided within the provision of building the new Easthouses school? AM. (iii) JA mentioned correspondence from Christine Grahame MSP regarding our concern  on the impact of the reduced bus service to the village, in particular the top of Brians Road. It stated that there was a desire for a direct route to Fort Kinnaird (48) AG asked why single decker provision?. Clr. Johnstone had received similar complaint from resident. Lothian buses stated numbers were low on (33) and it was purely business decision. AG to lead with Clr Johnstone to discuss next steps.
  10. Any other Business (i) Clr Johnstone advised Newtongrange Pipe band revived and looking for all ages new home Dean Tavern Monday 7pm from 3rd February. (ii) Clr. Johnstone note about park maintanance plan discussed 2. Matters Arising  (ii) Ross Lyle looking for project – Newsletter 4..
  11. Date of Next Meeting – Tuesday 25th February 2020 at 7.00 pm at Newbattle Community Learning Centre
Ross Anderson

Ross Anderson

I'm involved with the Newtongrange Community Council because I want to help preserve the unique heritage, character & facilities of the village.

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