Incorporating Cramond, Barnton, Cammo & Quality Street (West)

Minutes of Meeting held on Thurs 17th March 2016 in

Cramond Kirk Millennium Hall

Present: Andrew Mather (Chair), Ian Williamson (Secretary), Peter Scott, Ross Wilkinson, Marion Mitchell ,Bert Scott, Percy Feketey, and Gena Wylie. A total of 32 people were in attendance including Councillors Lindsay Paterson, Norman Work and Alastair Shields.

Welcome and introductions

The Chair welcomed those attending and noted apologies from David Belfall, Jean Morley, Eaun Pearson, Isla Browning, Jane Neville and Patricia Eason. The Chair noted that £8.5k had been received from the Edinburgh Airport Fund for use in supporting the work of the Interpretation Group. Also a sum of £14,739 was to come from NPS monies to fund restoration work on the wall to the front of the Maltings (and including the costs of landscaping).

Minutes of the previous meeting

The minute of the meeting held on 18 February was approved. The Chair however reminded those present of the challenge that had been raised about the January record of the discussion on the issue of the establishment of an Airport Action Group and how that Group sat in terms of governance against the CC. The following form of words had been drafted and agreed as representing the relationship between the AAG and the CC:

The Airport Action Group will represent the community on issues affecting the community and seek mitigation or resolution by airport management on behalf of the community. The Community Council would have a representative on this Group who would, where necessary, represent the Group at the formal Airport Consultative Committee. The Action Group will make reports on Issues and progress as appropriate to full meetings of the Community Council.

Police Report

The police report was given by PC Kris Harvey. There had been 34 recorded crimes in the 4 weeks from 17 February. 10 had been successfully pursued and charges were pending; the others were the subject of ongoing investigations. Housebreaking and attempted housebreakings continued to feature heavily although there had also been some drinking and driving offences, some drug offences and some incidents of joyriding at excessive speeds where ASBOs had been served on the drivers in an effort to curb future misdemeanors. A further local restructuring made it easier for resources to the area to be dispatched in future from Drylaw or South Queensferry depending on availability of officers at the time the call came through.

Airport Report

Recent weeks had seen more aircraft taking off towards the Forth and trialing the one-minute departures that had been designed to improve the efficiency of the dispatch processes. A minor deviation to the flight-path from the point of take-off has been introduced and seemed to be successful in seeing more of the aircraft avoiding Cramond. Similarly a slight deviation to the approach path and angle of descent was also bringing about some reduction to aircraft noise for aircraft flying in to Edinburgh over the Forth. While there was a year on year increase in the numbers of aircraft and passengers using the airport the forecast all supported the view that it would be 2024 at the earliest before a second runway may be required. This was notwithstanding the fact that the Scottish Government had indicated that it intended to half the cost of airport tax within the next 2 years. However there seemed to be little prospect of any re-alignment to the runway given the level of cost and disruption that would result. A robust complaints process was now in operation. Early signs were that the new Group seemed to be providing a satisfactory local means of engagement.

Planning Issues Report

Earlier on the 17th Peter Scott along with Norman Work and some members of the Cramond Action Group had attended a visit to the proposed site for the new Nursing Home behind Cramond Glebe Road that had been carried out by 3 Councillors from the City’s Planning Committee. Somewhat unusually the visit had taken place before it is understood the Councillors had received the report from officials. Balloons were flown to illustrate the height of the building and banners objecting to the proposals were put up n the local area courtesy of the CAG. Protocols meant that there could be no dialogue with the Councillors and therefore it is not possible to offer any sense of what the Councillors took from the visit. The hearing remains likely to be several weeks away and the Committee is obliged to provide a minimum 4 week notice period.

A PAN application had been made by Dalmeny Estates heralding the prospect of a 1200 new home development at Craigiehall Village on what has been a MoD base. Two public exhibitions are to be held the first of which will be at Craigie Farm on 12 April. The site lies within the South Queensferry CC locality but as one of a few neighbouring CCs we shall be invited to discussions with the consultants about what they have in mind. Evidently much of the traffic which such a development will produce will be destined for the Queensferry Road and Edinburgh. We have also asked the consultants to make a presentation at one of our future CC meetings.

The to-ing and fro-ing that had taken place with the Inquiry Reporters seeking further information had resulted in a delay to their report on the Local Development Plan and it was now becoming increasingly unlikely that their findings would be available before the Scottish Parliamentary elections.

Concerns continued over the approach that had been received from “Coastwatch” about the siting of portacabins on the shore. An approach had been made to the RNLI and to the Coastguard for advice on whether or not Coastwatch would complement or confuse the efforts of these agencies and indeed whether or not the objectives had any fit with the Edinburgh Safety Plan.

Action Plan Presentation from Dave Sinclair, CEC West Team

Dave Sinclair began with a resume of the changes that had been taking place within the West Team. Structures and responsibilities were under review and there were a number of vacancies. The Action List covered what had been identified in partnership as important issues; where there were issues which the CC considered to be requiring urgent attention then it was important for that to be highlighted.

A conditions survey report had been produced covering the Harbour walls and other walls/ structures in the area and this had been copied to the CC. Some remedial works had been carried out on some sections and other works would be carried out when resources became available. The various Cramond groups were checking the report.

Dave Sinclair acknowledged that the public toilets were in a poor condition. They would continue to look for resources to support renovations. The Council had entered into an arrangement with the Cramond Kirk using the Communities Toilet Scheme funds to help maintain the disabled toilet in the grounds of the Kirk for the use of the general public.

Progress towards introducing traffic restriction measures on Cramond Glebe Road had been at a glacial pace. Drawings covering phase 1 restrictions (from the Kirk Yard down to the entrance to the public car park) had been passed to Waverley Court and these would go to advert- and with it consultation – within the coming months. The second and final phase was likely to take 12 months to reach implementation. Temporary restrictions would be introduced over the coming Easter weekend. These would offer the community a very real sense of how the measures would look on the ground if they were introduced as currently drafted. Feedback would be sought. Concern was expressed at the overgrown bushes and vegetation at the entrance to the public car park; it was obscuring the ability of drivers to see when other drivers – and pedestrians – might be exiting. On the subject of the need for parking restriction measures the Secretary stressed to Dave Sinclair the need for engagement with Walkerhealthcare before the construction team moved on to Cramond Place nursing home site. There were already significant parking and traffic issues arising from the AMA construction work.

On signage improvements and interpretation boards Dave Sinclair confirmed that the new RNLI warning boards would be erected within days. He was reminded of the concern there was about clutter caused by the proliferation of signage over the years. The community had developed an interpretation strategy and some new signs had recently been placed in accordance with that strategy. But the Council had to take responsibility for helping to rationalise the signage that no longer fulfilled any purpose and which detracted from the amenity of the Village, including harbour and foreshore.

The collapsed wall adjacent to the Maltings was an eyesore. There was also a view that it was a health and safety risk; the Secretary advised that Dave Sinclair’s predecessor (Darren Wraight) had photographed children who had climbed up into the garden and were playing on an area that had been undermined). It was pointed out that there was a view that conservation area powers could be used to oblige the owner to remedy the damage. It was suggested that when the Council had appointed a contractor to carry out the work on the Maltings wall the opportunity should be sought to contact the owner of the house and to invite the owner and the contractor to discuss options for repairing the wall. The commercial waste bins – which it was believed belonged to the Bistro and which were as a rule situated in front of the Maltings – were also an eyesore and it was suggested that the HQ team that was reviewing the siting of commercial waste should be invited to cover the harbour area as part of their review. Vehicular access to the prom remained an issue and was one which the Council itself had brought on to the agenda and action list.

Work on the Salvesen Steps had stalled. A new contractor would have to be appointed to take forward the design options. A further update was to be sought from the Parks and Greenspace Team.

Work on the resurfacing of Cramond Road North at its junction with Gamekeepers was due to start within the next 2 to 3 months. Questions were raised about the condition of the mini-roundabout and whether these would be addressed at the same time. The road would be closed to traffic during the works. It was suggested that anti-skid surfacing was required at the tight corner east of the new roundabout.

Councillor’s Reports

Lindsay Patterson reported on the various local planning issues which were exercising the Councillors. These included the Local Development Plan, the PAN application for Craigiehall and the Murrays Estate. The latter fell to be considered within the Council on 24 April. Norman Work reported that following a review of supported bus services the decision had been taken to withdraw the support for the Horseburgh 64 service. The Service was poorly used and the subsidy which was working out at a rate of £4.30 per passenger was unsustainable. The Councillors had attended the visit of some if the members of the Planning Committee who had walked the site of the proposed nursing home earlier in the afternoon. It was noted that the visit had taken place before the members had received the advice from officials. This was contrary to normal practice.

Next Meeting

  • Thursday 21 April 2016 – CEC West Team Presentation

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