Minutes 10 August 2015

ARDGAY & DISTRICT COMMUNITY COUNCIL

Minutes approved 14th September 2015 – approved 09 November 2015.

Minutes of meeting held on Monday, 10th August 2015 in Ardgay Public Hall at 7.00pm

Present: Elected & co-opted members: David Hannah, Chair (DH), Marion Turner, Vice Chair (MT),

Alan Lawrence, Treasurer, (AL), Teresa Langley, Secretary, (TL), Phil Olson (PO), Betty Wright (BW),

Bob Sendall (BS)

Apologies: Silvia Muras (SM)

Police Scotland: No police representative

Minutes Secretary: Mary Goulder (MG)

Also present: Lesley Pope (LP), Sheila Lall (SL)

Item 1. Welcome. Chair DH welcomed everyone back after the holiday and thanked Lesley and Sheila for their attendance.

Item 2. Apologies. As above.

Item 3. Minutes of last meeting. The minutes of the June meeting were approved as a true and accurate record, proposed: Marion Turner; seconded: David Hannah.

Item 4. Matters arising:

(a)     Invershin Cycle ramp. (PO) The workshop reports that this installation is scheduled for the next two to three weeks.

(b)     Culrain junction flooding. No change. Flooding was bad again this week after very heavy rain on Monday.

(c)     Pylon line. Beauly-Loch Buidhe. Although previously suggested by Cllr Farlow that all cables should be underground, and this is highly desirable, it is appreciated that this would be impractical and exceedingly expensive. The CC will not push for this option. An updating report is expected from SSE by November.

(d)     Gledfield School Warning Signs/Safer Routes to School. No reply so far from Head Teacher; school resumes on 16th August. Verges on all approaches to the school are heavily overgrown and dangerous. MT will contact John Clark, THC TECS Bonar Bridge. MT Action. (See also AOCB (c)).

(e)     Service Point downgrading. It is understood that THC Chief Executive Steve Barron has been asked to reassess the issues raised by CC regarding the Bonar Bridge Service Point. It was reiterated that no monetary savings will be made by closing this Service Point as it has been utilising the library services for many years.

Item 5. Police report. No police officer present nor report received.

Item 6. Newsletter. Deadline for submission of articles for next edition is the end of August with distribution at the end of September. Discussion regarding incorporating Creich CC information will be held over until SM is available. Best wishes were extended to her for the imminent arrival of her baby.

Item 7. Secretary’s report/correspondence.

(a)     Information received regarding THC Ward Boundaries shows no change here.

(b)     Ardgay Public Hall Committee has advised of new storage charges of £25 per annum for all hall users. CC will meet this cost from the admin account. AL Action.

(c)     Sharing of Minutes with KoSDT. Approval of sharing of draft Minutes, clearly marked, was agreed. Receipt of the monthly Development Officer’s report constitutes the Trust’s input to this agreement.

Item 8. Treasurer’s report. (AL) With the closure of the Toilets Account the CC now maintains a single account for which the cleared balance is £9998.55 with one outstanding cheque for £20. Current restricted fund balances are: toilet cleaning: £780.00 + (deficit), Beinn Tharsuinn Community Projects: £668.19, Newsletter: £1781.55, Rock by Sea Community Benefit: £7225.00, E.ON Path Fund: £800. £5 donation to the newsletter funds was given to AL from residents in Strathoykel and MT passed over £30 raised from two gazebo hires. Secretary will ask Cllr Farlow to push for THC payments to be made. Treasurer will follow up on receipt of accounts by THC. TL/AL Action. It was questioned if the Community Projects funds require topping up. Expenditure expected for the Christmas lighting this December. TL to check what equipment can be sourced via THC. Further fund applications can be made if necessary. TL Action.

The Treasurer awaits receipt of THC annual grants for administration, toilet maintenance and £100 promised towards the village flower tubs from the Ward Discretionary Budget. Secretary will ask Cllr Farlow to push for these payments to be made. TL Action.

Item 9. Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust report. (MT) The recent Development Officer’s report has been circulated. The Trust has made a bid to the Scottish Government Regeneration Fund in respect of the centre of Ardgay village. An ambitious plan should consider many features including parking availability, village approaches and road junctions, pedestrian crossing to play park, etc.  CC has confirmed with Colin Mitchell that The Lady Ross site is on the market. Falls of Shin project has received Planning approval and is awaiting Big Lottery Stage Two approval. Catering van in situ through summer is proving very popular. Further details from the DO report available on request. DH commented on the excellent KoSDT website.

Item 10. Highland Council. No report received.

Item 11. Windfarms. Braemore – going to PLI 19th September.

Item 12. AOCB. (a) Ardgay Hill footpath. Email from Matt Dent, Access Officer, circulated prior to meeting. Secretary will reply with thanks and CC support. DH and BW are happy to attend a site meeting if Matt Dent advises date and time. TL/DH/BW Action. (b) Third Sector Interface. DH will attend event in Lairg on 8th September. (c) Falls of Shin. Agreed to submit letter of CC support for project to KoSDT. TL Action. (c) Roadside verges. All verges in and around the village need to be cut back as soon as possible as sightlines as severely restricted due to growth, roads are narrower, ditches cannot be safely identified, all of which raise dangerous issues for drivers and pedestrians alike. School children are particularly vulnerable but also all road users. MT will pass this via the Service Point to John Clark THC TECS. (d) Public/private session. LP enquired regarding the CC policy. It was explained that CC meetings are ‘meetings held in public’ but not ‘public meetings’ although at A&DCC members of the public are always made welcome and encouraged to participate. The deliberations of the CC regarding applications to the Beinn Tharsuinn Windfarm Community Benefit Fund are held in private with the decisions noted publicly in the Minutes. (e) Broadband. Scottish Government is believed to be pushing BT to identify which exchanges will be upgraded. Rumour has it that a technical solution may have been found regarding the ‘exchange only’ cases. (f) Carbisdale Castle. Nil of note. LP advised that software problems regarding the map clarification may have delayed the Right to Buy application. (g) NC 500. BS objected strongly to the publicity for this new route which appears to be pushing tourists out of this area to the detriment of local businesses, accommodation and catering providers, petrol stations, etc. Central Sutherland needs to take action to pull people away from the perimeter route. Discussions suggested with Creich and Lairg CCs and KoSDT to build around the new Falls of Shin centre and expand Kyle of Sutherland promotion. Funds might be sourced from the decommissioning budget at Dounreay. A co-ordinator would be required to collate interest, approach local businesses, etc. LP volunteered to draw up a list of potential interested parties. She was asked if she could draft an article for the next newsletter and bring that and her list to the next meeting. LP Action. (h) Station flowers. Carol Laver will be the ‘Station Adopter’ working with help from Doreen Bruce. Receipts will be returned by AL to Carol who will seek reimbursement. AL Action. (i) Community Council elections. DH reminded everyone that nominations to be on the CC must be submitted in time (by 4pm 6th October); all CC members wishing to continue must submit nomination. (j) Inaccurate and incomplete information held by THC concerning CCs in the region is leading to misinformation as the recent list of CCs newsletters indicates. Nomination papers for the CC elections are not currently available to download; no telephone contact numbers are shown. This lack of accurate information indicates little or no regard for Community Councils and their roles.

Item 15. Date and time of next meeting. The next meeting will be held in the Ardgay Public Hall at 7pm on Monday 14th September 2015. There will be no meeting in October.

Meeting closed at 9pm.

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