Minutes May 2022
The May NCC meeting and first hybrid meeting @ The Dean Tavern, Temperance Room & on zoom captured community concerns and on-going issues. Police report, park improvements including petanque and tennis and Liney Dyke conservation status discussed. Lloyds pharmacy prescription service concerns also tabled. Latest church developments and plans for Newtongrange Church, was delivered by Rev Gayle Taylor & Gary Sheret. An introduction and Councillor report was offered by our three new Midlothian South, ward councillors.
|Members Present||In Attendance|
- Welcome and introductions –
- Apologies on behalf of Fiona Brooks. Chair and fellow NCC introduced themselves to the three new councillors for the ward who were in attendance.
- Due to an on going incident PC McFarlane offered apologies as was unable to attend in person.
- Previous minutes – April 2022 (JR proposed & AM seconded)
- Police report – RA circulated by email before meeting.
- AM stated quad bikes appeared very difficult to catch
- Between 27/04 – 31/05 139 calls received to the Newtongrange area.
- Protecting and improving services:
- Todd the Snake– Clr. J actually set aside £3,000 (not £2,000) for implementation in NPS grounds. Laura Cameron new HT excited about development near gate & is also keen to get signage for the school at Park Rd. side. Sadly original contractor Paul Johnston passed away after a sudden illness. RA has passed on a possible contractor. The quotes back from contractors has meant that the cost will be higher than the £2,000 earmarked. Guerrilla Gardeners to get a planter with flowers to compliment the design.
- Newtongrange Flyer – LA asked what is happening with the next newsletter? JA apologized that he has been unable to edit all the content and that keeps getting out of date. With changes with lockdown etc. RM has also been swamped with work and house commitments. It was agreed that RM would take action to create/collate content for a streamlined version of the newsletter. JA would then get it laid out and sent to the printer. All that is really required is wee snippets of information from the various groups in the village.
- Queens Jubilee (QJ) JM introduced COOP staff suggestion of heritage names like Robert Franks, for a walk through the park or new development roads such as at the Morris Club development. Action for JM to talk to Catherine Johnstone (CJ)
- QJ continued. NCC Platinum bench : Still nothing back regarding LA’s suggestion of a platinum bench for the park, CJ mentioned that the sensory garden will have 3 or 4 benches.
- QJ continued. On 03/06/22 the planting of 7 trees for the 7 decades of the Queen’s reign with input from Village Voices, to commence in the church grounds from 2-2:30pm, afterwards community to move across to NDT/NC1 ‘The Pool’ Jubilee event from 2-4pm
- QJ continued – The Beacon – JM had approached Nicola Moss, Curator, Mining Museum in January regarding beacon lighting on evening of 02/06/22. NMMS were unable to commit to the event.
- Old bowling green & pavillion @ Newtongrange Park. Unable to be used for tennis or petanque. Fiona Clandillon – Head of Development (FC) has plans for use. Action for RA to ask FC along to next meeting for latest information regarding council Masterplan plans. Asked new councillors to look into issue.
- Old Services & Artisans (British Legion) site. AM mentioned that planning consent is still on this site. Technically they started 3 years ago. Action for AM to chase this issue up again.
- NWH Lorries – LA concerned about the vast number of lorries using the under pressure roads from 6am. Bryan’s Rd, Stobhill Road and Lady Brae choked with pollution. Sandy Howden (SH) mentioned the white dust all over his house on Crawlees Rd. NCC asked can MC planning department do anything about it with the increased number of vehicles? Action for AM to check in with Cath McGill for MFCC details.
- Dalhousie Rd bins – AM/JR to contact Derek Oliver about issue.
- Lloyds Chemist, Main Street prescription service – No clear improvement with service. Although the store seemed to have more staff on in certain days. Action still for JR to contact Morag Barrow Joint Director, Health and Social Care, Chief Officer of Midlothian Integrated Joint Board MC. Clr. Bowen felt in his opinion the Lloyds at Bonnyrigg, seemed better organized with the prescription service. LA mentioned that it used to be in a clear alphabetical order. JA also suggested getting a plan together to have a chat with the Lloyds Manager with regards to the standard of service provided.
- Sensory garden – 12,000 from each councillor secured for sensory garden, around the railings (Old Bandstand) in the park. Now with Gary Fairley. The war memorial refurbishment is looking good. CJ still waiting on a response.
- The old pool site – LA/JR asks what is going to happen with the rubble behind the hoardings. It is an absolute mess and change is a long time coming. JA had previously asked about price of grassing the area? Get a quote from a local landscape gardener. What about a pop-up garden project, why does it not include area beyond hoardings? Nice looking garden plan or food growing initiative (it was added to a list of possible allotments, along with the overgrown area behind the fence next to the Leisure Centre)? The Leisure Centre grass is an eyesore, A jungle with weeds and trees. Action require for Justin Venton to get it trimmed. The communication from MC seems very disconnected. Rev Gayle Taylor (GT) AM & JR to chat to Pat Bowie regarding the area behind the hoardings. RA to ask Fiona Clandillon along to next meeting.
- Welfare Park paths – NCC request that the paths need to be maintained to a good order.
- The library building – Still waiting on news. RA to ask Fiona Clandillon along to next meeting.
- Liney Dyke – Regarding the 20 Lothian Road back wall replacement. JM still waiting on MC proof that the Liney Dyke wall is not in the conservation area. Legal dept. must keep records of the conservation area.
- Petanque piste @ Bryans Rd. entrance of park – SH mentioned that the project received £15,000 commitment from the departing councillors. James Kinch waiting on an estimate. RM asked about timeframe? SH mentioned the end of summer. The petanque groups has 50+ names and plans to provide kits for local groups. James Kinch said any overspend will stay in a holding account. RA to ask about any overspend? SH looked at funding grants from Buccleuch. Clr. Ellen Scott suggested a (University of Edinburgh) UoE micro-grant?
- Tennis courts – RA informed meeting that the old tennis courts were cleaned and lines painted. really happy with the result, although initial lines were wonky. Justin to forward report when received. Still to receive nets and posts from Sharon Lynch. Need to look at storage options with possible Tennis pavilion partnership with local groups. Rent free period is not possible. Looking to have facilities for a summer of sport. Longer term looking to combine with Midlothian Community Tennis concept.
- The Newtongrange Masterplan: ensuring community development remains at its heart and engaging business and the village in its progress
- Gayle Taylor – (Transition Minister) and Gary Sheret- (Project Manager) provided update with current plans for Newtongrange Church.
- May has been the month of communication with 2the congregation, NDT & now NCC. With information to be shared via social media channels i.e Whats On In Newtongrange.
- The aim for the refurbishment is to create a multi-purpose space for the whole community in a well equipped space. A well equipped space in the right place.
- GT pointed out at this years General Assembly that the Church of Scotland is to drastically cut church buildings & staff so Newtongrange Church needs to be viable , used well & by all. Make sure no one is excluded.
- Church is to have the ability to create decent sized spaces with approx. 220 max. The sections can be for different use of the building at the same time. Energy efficient options. With appropriate use of curtain or chain mail to delineate space. With retractable acoustic partitions for other areas where quiet is required. Facility for stage productions, AV equipment.
- Make main doors open, with glazed vestibule doors. With intention to see right through to the channel if all spaces are open. Glazed doors to increase light & make use of the south facing aspect of building.
- Kitchen space with two hatches. Onsite catering capabilities. Toilets (with disabled and baby changing units) at front of the church. Mutual understanding & agreements might be required for accessing toilet & cafe facilities while moving between areas.
- Limited car park with promotion of walking, cycling or public transport with bus stop(s) on Main Street. Electric car charge-point in consideration.
- Looking to have a new digital noticeboard. With option for other groups to use the noticeboard for promotion.
- The church wishes to work and be included on the NMMS heritage trail.
- Church/Library option will have option for hatched door area to open up to create flexibility between the two areas. Library could perhaps be the hub for group bookings. It will be about managing the use of the facility. Newtongrange Primary School wants to have the seasonal end of term assemblies & other events such as funerals & Remembrance Sunday.
- Have seven day (not just Sunday) flexible ‘shared resource’ space with cafe.
- RM asked when the work will start? GF states it is in the hands of MC planning department. Ideally Autumn 2022 or by middle of 2023.
- Councillor’s – Clr. Kelly Drummond (Labour) introduced herself as a ‘local girl’ and recognised a number of NCC members. Cl. D is very excited to serve and will work as hard as she can for the community. Clr. Ellen Scott (SNP) lived in the village. Clr. S is Chairperson of Gorebridge Community Cares & is proud of the purchase of the old police station. Clr. S looks to leave a legacy for the children with projects like resurrecting ‘Old Gala Park’ in Gorebridge. With a community orchard, planted seven years ago to improve diets of the community. Clr. S ambition is to get a new high school in the area, especially with Springfied & Redheugh developments adding to existing pressures. JR has lots of concerns regarding the developments. Where are all the people coming from. CJ felt there needs to be joint up thinking about how new estates, co-operation between the Scottish Housing Investment Partnership (SHIP), Developers and Council. Clr. Douglas Bowen (SNP) lived/lives in Newtongrange. Clr. B worked for 17 years as a lawyer in Bonnyrig. Has relatives and connections with in Newtongrange Primary & Newbattle High School. His brief Economic Development, Planning & Transport. Clr B’s aim for Newtongrange to flourish and would love to see gap sites filled in.
- Treasurer – £1,730.94 still in bank.
- MFCC – N/A.
- Planning Applications – AM to keep an eye on Springfield Development with likely determination end of May/June. Action AM to put post up regarding NCC & other CC’s activity.
- Correspondence – JA to share Correspondence from firstname.lastname@example.org after meeting. RA to contact Laura Cameron regarding Remembrance stones in memory of all those who died from the village in WW1.
- Date of Next Meeting – Tuesday 28th June 2022 at 7.00 pm, Temperance Room, Dean Tavern and Zoom – register here
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