June Minutes – 2018

Bringing information & events to the Largs community

Largs Community Council logo

Largs Community Council
Approved Minutes
Thursday 21 June 2018 at 7pm at Largs Library


Present: CCllr D Blair (Chair), CCllr V Lundie, CCllr J Stewart, CCllr A Adair, CCllr M Woods, CCllr D Cochrane, CCllr A Carson, CCllr J Phillips, Cllr I Murdoch, Cllr A Hill, Inspector C Convery

Apologies: CCllr J Perman, CCllr P Perman

Item Business
1 Welcome

Chair welcomed members and introduced Roz Fallon of North Ayrshire Council

2 Apologises

As noted above

3 Visitors

Roz Falllon, Marketing and Publicity Officer, Roads and Streetscene, NAC.  The campaigns being progressed under the topic of roads are road safety, flood protection, winter gritting (Oct-April), street lighting (promoting LED), night spotting and crime.
CCllr Blair raised the issue of the current works on A760.  Hours of works are 9.00-16.30, but the Road Closed signage is left in place resulting in motorists taking unnecessary and timely detours.  Are we to guess if a road is open or not. Signage should have times or be covered.  Roz confirmed that she has just passed and the sign is still in place so she has just called it in.  CCllr confirmed that works this coming week will be under control and so the road will be open.  Roz advised that everything on web page is precise and up to date and encouraged us to share this information. Issues with signage, she will raise with upper management and contractors. Cllr Murdoch raise the issue that when Transerve closed shore road any emergency vehicle or funeral cortege was permitted access, perhaps this should be the same for future A760 closures.  Roz has suggested to McGills that when road closures impact their timetable one option for them would be to liaise with Scotrail to implement a reciprocal ticket arrangement.

Member of Public – John Corrigan – asked about the work inspection.  Roz advised that contractors have their own inspection team and then NAC have an inspection team.  John asked why it has all going wrong then – signage is all wrong, traffic not knowing road is closed until point of closure. This has been the case in two recent works.  Roz has promised to take this on board and take it forward as an issue.  Cllr Murdoch clarified that works on Greenock road were carried out by Transport Scotland and not NAC, the recent works outside Pearsons was carried out under a permit via Transport Scotland by a utility company.  Callum (Largs & Millport Weekly News) advised that on NAC website and from a quote both implied A760 closure for 2 weeks.  Could they have a more advance notice as he only made deadline for public?  Roz advised that originally the closure was for 2 weeks but they had managed to reduce it to 1 and so when that was authorised the website was updated.  The difficultly with a weekly newspaper is public take it as being bang up to date.  CCllr Blair mentioned that with the Greenock Road closures we had a meeting and plenty advance notice. Perhaps this is something that NAC would consider for future closures etc.  Roz asked if we could put the link on our page.  Cllr Murdoch stated that he would also take on board this, advising us in advance.
CCllr Wood asked about the street lighting, are NAC going to liaise with Police to identify areas that require more street lighting. The LED project is about replacing the old sodium lighting and does not include new lighting at this time.  She will find out for us the route for requesting new lighting.


4 North Ayrshire Council Report

Cllr Murdoch reported that NAC have agreed to run the pilot parking marshal scheme and will run every Saturday and Sunday from 30 June and run until end of Viking Festival.  Three members of Streetscene will run the piolet.  It is purely about directing people to parking areas and not enforcement. CCllr Blair stated that this was good news.  He has also been involved in meetings about creating parking in Largs and areas have been identified.  One area he would welcome is a trader’s carpark with permit for local businesses and their staff.  He advised that £300K has been set aside in the budget to implement the decriminalising of parking in North Ayrshire. Timescale he has been given is 18-24months. CCllr Stewart advised that she had been contacted by a member of the public with a view to having some form of parking permit. CCllr Cochrane asked why NAC flatly rejects pilots schemes, in particular when fellow CCllr Adair and residents have been asking for a pilot scheme in relation to resident permits do they then agree to the street ambassador pilot?  CCllr Hill responded that a parking permit scheme involves lots more work and change of law, a change of traffic order and enforcement. It would have to be part of a wider scheme. Every time a consultation for parking in Largs is brought forward half the town agree and the other half object and protest, and so no progression made.  CCllr Blair has suggested that we work together with elected members, local paper and the people of Largs to have a more formal survey.  Cllr Hill is willing to sit down with the Community Council to discuss and look at ideas, possibly even revisiting previous proposals.  General consensus among members is that this is something we would wish to take forward.  CCllr Cochrane comments that he feels that Calmac staff has more or less turned the pier into a staff carpark.
Cllr Murdoch continued that he is working on getting the public toilets refurbished, but it is debatable as to where the funding will come from.  Regarding the compactor bins he is attempting to get 4 of these, to be paid from the car park fund.
Next week is the next full meeting of the council, during which he intends to ask why is it necessary to have an EIA for Ardrossan harbour but not for the decommission site at Hunterston, how much revenue was lost from the seafront carpark on the weekends from Easter to middle of May due to space being used for compound re works on the square, and on what basis was there for an assisted crossing within the school campus?
CCllr Lundie stated that we have had correspondence regarding the state of Routenburn Golf Course, the gentlemen concerned has approached NAC but doesn’t seem to be getting anywhere or any response.  Cllr Hill responded that the course is leased by KA Leisure, and should direct them to Colin Glencoasre.  Cllr Murdoch is surprised by this as many people have transferred to Routenburn due to it being in good condition and cheap.   CCllr Carson on the other hand states that she has been approached by members of public who have complained about its state and lack of repairs.  She had advised them to letter NAC but they have failed to respond and now have approached us for assistance.   CCllr Murdoch agreed he will check this again. Cllr Hill expressed concern that the golf club committee appear not to be having regular meetings but that he would email KA Leisure regarding this.
Cllr Hill advised that the second round of consultation for the Flatt Road housing development was due next week. CCllr Lundie has already emailed this information to members.  CCllr Blair expressed his disappointment at the timings and booking system for this consultation and amount of information required.
Cllr Murdoch advised that he attended a meeting last week and advised that local businesses have a will to go forward with a BID2.  There will be a survey carried out by Tartan Jigsaw regarding this and will be presented to the businesses in 3 months’ time to see if they wish to move forward. CCllr Carson enquired if there would be a representative from Largs Community council involved.  Cllr Murdoch advised that he is supportive of BID2 providing it is open and transparent. Cllr Hill stated that his understanding is that it will be a more community BID with involvement from Community Council and other organisations.
Cllr Murdoch advised that there is a new Largs Events Committee.  Cllr Hill advised that he is Chair, Ian Murdoch is vice-chair, Anne Carson is a member and would welcome other members. Intention is to set up working groups to look at events in Gallowgate Square and the wider area, eg Yuletide.
CCllr Carson enquired about she could become involved in The Viking Festival Committee, perhaps directing people or leaflet distribution.  CCllr Blair declared an interest as a member of Viking Festival and advised that he became involved simply by just starting to help, initially via the Largs Youth Theatre.  He was approached to then be involved, to which he agreed but was clear that as an individual and independent from the community council.  CCllr Blair advises that anyone wishing to be involved in The Viking Festival Committee should write to their secretary, Linda Young.


5 Minutes of Meeting of 17 May 2018

Approved CCllr Adair, 2nd CCllr Phillips

6 Matters Arising from Minutes

None specific.

7 Secretary’s Report and Correspondence

Regarding our formal complaint concerning our FOI request and handling of Douglas Park shelter demolition, an acknowledgment was requested; however this has yet to be received!  We can only assume that this has in fact been received as reference was made to it in our local paper by an elected member.

Further to last month’s concern about traffic on A760 near crematorium and bus stop cut out as opposed to a lay-by, letter was sent to NAC planning expressing our concern and referring back to original application.  Still awaiting response.  Cllr Murdoch advised that when he was recently exiting the crematorium, he encounter a vehicle over taking and could have been carnage. He has asked roads department to look again at this stretch.
Letter received from member of public who previously attended one of our community council meetings.  Secretary feels that he has made several valid points and will email a copy to all members.
Not related to correspondence but on way home this evening CCllr Lundie passed Iain Dippie, who was coming of the hill at Bellesdale, he was carrying 3 full black bin bags, obviously collecting rubbish from our Gretas area.  Highlighting the issue of rubbish in this area.

8 Treasurer’s Report

Income into the project fund of £1400 from the micro grants. No cheques issued.

Balances-Project account £2844.07 and current account £213.87
Proposed CCllr Phillips, 2nd CCllr Adair
CCllr Blair has received apology from SSE saying that further cheque is on its way.  We have held back on distribution of these grants until we had received the full funds from SSE.

9 Sub Committee Reports

a.    Police – Reported by Inspector Convery (see attached).  Another positive month.  This weekend involved policing Largs Live, although it is a scaled back version this year.
He touched on the subject raised by Roz about street lighting.  He has tasked Sgt Alex Marshal with doing an environmental walkabout regarding this. Recent reports of parking on the grass along the prom seem to have been a one off prompted by a local person parking first to attend local premises.  CCllr Blair stated it was disappointing that 3 drink drivers were local persons; there is no excuse you can walk or get a taxi in Largs. Inspector advised that he would not even describe these as borderline.
CCllr Wood had asked about parking in disabled bays, PC Hutchison and team will keep eye on this. Report of young person driving at speed.  Concerns were also raised about a bogus worker; they will speak to the lady involved and take further action if necessary.
CCllr Carson asked if there had been any reports of break in or squatting at former Warrenpark Nursing Home.  Surrounding residents advised that they have reported it and now young persons are starting fires.  The security company that was previously covering the premises are no longer there. Inspector Convery will ask the nightshift to check this out and also approach the management company about having it secured.
CCllr Phillips raised again a parking issue at the top of Holehouse Road, parking right on the bend so preventing a clear line of sight.
Cllr Murdoch was at the opening of the new skate park. He commended the two officers who were there building a great rapport with the youngsters.

b.    Licensing – follow up from last month’s application from The Anchor Bar, Cllr Murdoch advised that this was granted on Monday 18 June.

c.    Planning – Application (retrospective) from Mr McDonald of The Room to extend the outdoor seating area. Application states “…enlarge outdoor seating area, the additional area is owned by my company and has been used since 1993.”  General consensus is that there is a difference between what is owned by The Room and what has been granted permission for sale of alcohol. Given that we are only in year one of the new Gallowgate Square Events space, it is felt that it is too soon to be granting this enlarged area application.  The current permission held is for 40 seats but within a smaller area. Clarity has to be sought over what is owned and what is not. CCllr Blair asked elected members what is the Council’s policy on the upkeep of Gallowgate Square. Cllr Murdoch responded that he has asked for a clause to created whereby when an event is booked that requires the entire square then all of the businesses having seating on council area of the square have to remove them. He is waiting for clarity from estates on this point.  Response is that we seek clarity given debateable ownership and ambiguity.

An application of variation has been received to extend operating time period of National Offshore Wind Turbine testing facility until 14 October 2019 at Hunterston Construction yard.  Response – no objections.

d.    Environment – on our local Facebook page, Largs People there were reports of fly tipping, both up The Glen and The Haylie.  Cllr Murdoch confirmed he has already reported this; however, the problem is that it falls to the landowner to clear.
CCllr Adair mentioned that the water is very brown/discoloured which is  attracting birds.  Cllr Murdoch advised that this is wastewater outfall.  He has already reported this issue which is being investigated by SEPA

e.    Transportation – no further issues.

f.     Social Media – CCllr Stewart has already share the NAC link on our Facebook page, Twitter and Largs People. Feedback received already that NAC site is wrong.

10 A.O.C.B.
CCllr Stewart introduced member of the public Kirsten Murray who would be interested in joining Largs Community Council. Proposed by CCllr Stewart, 2nd CCllr Carson.  Kirsten accepts.
CCllr Cochrane attended recent Hunterston Stakeholders meeting, it was the 50th meeting. Confirmed again that by 2024 Hunterston ‘A’ will have only a skeleton staff. In the period 2016/2017 the £20m community fund that Magnox give out only £70K was in North Ayrshire.  Elected councillors are to meet with them to try to address this.  At the ‘B’ station there is still 500 staff.  Further to the ‘cracked’ bricks in reactor 3, it was shut down.  This reactor could be operational, however, Hunterston themselves suggested to the Office of Nuclear Regulator that they would not reopen this reactor until they had carried out extensive investigations into the 39 cracked bricks out of 2000.  There would have to be 700 cracked bricks for there to be any danger whatsoever.  They are only operating at 50% capacity and so only breaking even.CCllr Blair asked members if they wished, as previously expressed, to lodge a formal complaint against a specific elected member regarding what was considered to be a breach of Councillor’s Code of Conduct.  CCllr Blair seeks guidance on how members wish to proceed. Consensus from members is that we should proceed as several points of conduct have been breached.
Proposed by CCllr Wood to submit formal complaint, 2nd CCllr Adair, 8 for, 0 against, 1 abstention.
CCllr Blair clarified the process that we as individuals may have to be involved in, and will arrange a separate meeting for the purpose of this discussion.
11 Date of Next Meeting –  19 July 2018

Download Minutes