CRAMOND & BARNTON COMMUNITY COUNCIL
Incorporating Cramond, Barnton, Cammo & Quality Street (West)
Minutes of Meeting held on Thurs 17th November 2022 at Cramond Kirk Hall
Participating: John Loudon (Chair), John Howison (Vice-chair), Ian Williamson (Secretary), Sally Chalmers (Engagement Officer), Peter Scott (Planning Lead) Hamish Barrie, Robert Bruce, Dianne Stein, Gena Wyiie and Percy Feketey.
In attendance: Councillor Louise Young and another 5 members of the community.
Councillor Norman Work and Bert Scott.
John Loudon noted that all reports had been circulated to allow the main business of the meeting to be consideration of the draft City Plan 2020. There are no comments on the reports which were accepted as circulated.
Approval of October 2022 Minutes
The minutes were to be approved subject to some adjustments which Sally Chalmers had offered on three separate points (one relating to item 111 and two to item 20). The Secretary undertook to take these on board.
A letter had yet to go to Cala Homes to express dismay at the action taken to sell off the Community Hub building to a Nursery School provider. John Loudon undertook to write. Sally Chalmers was in discussion with Ian Rodgers regarding the scope for a joint website. The Autumn Newsletter had been issued and the Chair expressed his thanks to Sally for her hard work in driving this.
John Loudon noted that he and Dianne Stein – who had joined the CC at the October meeting had met with Patricia and Iain Eason at the Forget-me-Not Lodge where John had been pleasantly surprised to note that the structural condition of the lodge was better than he had expected given how long the building had been used. The roof he felt did not require replaced despite a contrary view being held by Alzheimer’s Scotland. He advised that Dianne had agreed to become a member of the Edinburgh Airport Board as a representative of the CC. James Hancock was welcomed as another new member – proposed by the Chair and seconded by the Secretary.
The Police Report was deficient in terms of not recording reported crimes to date (along with the resultant trends). The Secretary read the narrative which reflected the response to continuing issues of vehicle speeding of the illegal use of off-road bikes and quad bikes (including on the foreshore) and of anti-social behaviour inc in Barnton Avenue and Cramond Avenue.
Following on from the confirmation at the last meeting about the prospective introduction of a 30mph speed limit (from 40mph) on various roads in Edinburgh the Secretary had asked whether there would be regular speed checks – at least in the early weeks following any reduction. He was advised that “every effort would be made to conduct enforcement frequently to reinforce the new speed limit to drivers.” The frequency would be dependent upon resources. Further investigations were required to determine where the fines revenue went. (Note – Confirmed following the meeting that the fines go direct to Scottish Government).
Hamish Barrie said he had written on several occasions to the Headteacher of the Royal High about the reckless behaviour of pupils crossing the Queensferry Road to access the shops on the south side. His approaches had copied images of some playing chicken with vehicles often travelling in excess of the 40mph limit. For others the sheer time lag between the green man coming on meant simple loss of patience. The risks compounded by peer pressure bravado. The school did not see the behaviour of the pupils when “off the campus” as being a matter for it to address. The ensuing dialogue between Hamish and Councillor Young identified that it was an issue about which the Councillors were well appraised and that efforts were being taken to look into the location and frequency patterns of the lights.
The unlicensed” fireworks display which took place on Cramond sands on 5 November was discussed. The general view was that large unlicensed events were to be discouraged and that the Community Council might write to the CEC in 2023 in the months leading up to November to encourage it to publicise the need for approval to be sought and secured (and to consider fines for unlicensed events).
Update on Cramond Inn
Covered in the Secretary’s Report. John Loudon added the fact that he had had a telephone discussion with Humphrey Smith who remained uninterested in any notion of selling or letting the building. He felt he had presided over a sympathetic upgrading of the Inn when he took it over. He continued to try to attract a management team – and welcomed any support the community could provide in securing such a team. The Secretary reported that in recent days alarms had gone off at the Inn – on one occasion a day and a half elapsing before it was turned off. This raised the question of enforcement of alarms. It also highlighted the need for Richard Bright to be invited to extend the reach of the local communication regarding interest in supporting the setup of a group to help progress a possible buy-out of the Inn.
Update on Brighouse Mediation
The outcome to the mediation and the resultant Development Management Sub-Committee’s consideration of the application are covered in the Secretary’s Report. What happens next is the meeting to be held in the Cramond Kirk at 7:30pm on Monday 28 November which will be led by Keir Bloomer (who acted as Mediator during the recent negotiations involving the community representatives and the developer). The meeting will provide an opportunity to hear from Penny Lockhead whose company have taken on the role of driving the delivery of the agreed Route Map for the development of the remaining undeveloped section of the site. Also present will be the AMA Planning Consultant (Caroline Nutsford).
Penny Lockhead will also be meeting with individual members of the Community to hear their views on what should be developed on the site as part of a gathering of views on what the Community would support going forward. The Community Council was circulating a poster advertising the meeting in an effort to attract as many people as possible who may wish to share their thoughts on the emerging vision.
While a summary was covered in the Secretary’s Report John Loudon invited Peter Scott to provide some more of the background to the planned experimental closure of the section of Cammo Road running over to the Turnhouse Road.
Some residents had approached Kevin Lang seeking support for the closure of Cammo Road to through traffic from the Estate North Car Park through to the Turnhouse Road. The CEC are consulting on an experimental Traffic Order. In informing the CC response Peter had surveyed the residents most affected but had also received feedback from a number who lived at Lenniemuir who said they would be adversely affected by the proposed closure.
The CC response reflected the disparate comments received. The Council agreed to the short-term experimental order subject to review. It was also agreed not to begin the trial until new traffic lights were installed at the Maybury Road/Craigs Road junction. Councillor Young added that it had always been intended that the Order would be temporary to allow for proper review. It was clear that the impact depended upon where people lived and the 9-month trial would reveal whether the closure created more problems that it was intended to address. Spring of 2023 was the likely trial start date.
The proposal to contact the Cramond Surgery was supported. Approaching the Council about more grit buckets around the Cramond Car Park was supported. It was also suggested the Council might look to see if the role of the toilet attendants could be expanded to provide for them to operate small gritter vehicles to keep the promenade safe in Winter.
Councillor Young said she welcomed the more recent progress with the AMA Development; there was now a plan for the way forward. She reported that there had been a traffic accident involving a child near Cramond Primary the circumstances of which were being investigated.
In recent days many of the road traffic marking had been re-instated. She asked the Secretary if he could try to look out an old paper which had gone before the Traffic and Environment Committee some years earlier which had forewarned about risk on the Whitehouse Road.
Gena Wylie advised that the grant received by CCs was designed to pay admin and hall rental costs. She advised that a number of CCs were pressing the CEC to recognise that the grant was no longer meeting costs. Councillor Young was aware of the concerns and was looking into it. There was also a disparity between the costs requiring to be met in different CC localities. Three of the other local NW CCs paid nothing for hall rental having the use of CEC Libraries or Community Centres. For CBCC in full year hall costs were £460. The Chair had emailed Councillor Lewis Younnie about funding.
Hamish Barrie drew attention to the recent heavy rains and the flooding at the Barnton Grove/Whitehouse Road junction. The drains were not clearing and the situation was not helped by the new raised crossing designed to make it easier for people living in the supported accommodation. A second issue of growing concern was the number of school children from the Royal High who were playing chicken in crossing the Queensferry Road. He had written to the Headmistress. Part of the problem was down to the poor frequency of the pedestrian crossing which inclined more children not to wait. The school now had some 1500 pupils a far cry from the 680 for which it was designed. New lights were required. Councillor Young said there was a commitment to improve the lights at the foot of Clermiston Road – now scheduled for 2023. The risks were made worse with some cars breaking the red lights.
Percy Feketey said he would pursue the request made earlier in the year for a height barrier at the entrance to the Cramond Car Park when the met with the Neighbourhood Network later in the month. Gena Wylie noted that the need for new bus shelters had been raised with the NN.
Peter Scott said there was a new consultation on proposed 20mph speed limits – comments due back by 8 February 2023. He had still to see the details from the CEC having picked up an early warning about the plans from the press.
James Hancock expressed his concern about the excessive speed of cars – and cyclists on Braepark Road. Peter Scott advised that the issue was one about which the CC had written to the CEC some years ago – with proposals for making it safer – but to no avail. The desirability of being clear about the traffic flows was mentioned which suggested fresh monitoring in the Spring may be advisable.
Sally asked Councillor Young whether the Councillors and Alex Cole Hamilton could post their relevant updated to the Cammo and Srathalmond Community Facebook group. It is a private group but if they ask to join Sally, as the admin would give them access.
Date of Next Meeting
Thursday 19 January 2023 at 7 PM but would be on a digital platform and one suitable to Norman Work. This was done with some reluctance there being a view that the face-to-face meeting allowed for a better dynamic. But winter weather tended to discourage attendance and avoiding hall costs was advisable where possible.