Strachur District Community Council

Minutes of General Meeting

Held at 19:30 on Wednesday 6th August 2014, Strathlachlan Community Hall


Members present: Archie Reid (Convener), Isabel McGladdery (Treasurer) and Les Earle (Secretary).


Also in attendance: Cllr Alex McNaughton and one member of the public.


1. Convener’s opening remarks: None.

2. Apologies and declarations of interest: Apologies: John Fleming and Heather Grier. There were no declarations.

3. Minutes: Minutes for the meeting held on 11th June 2014 were adopted as accurate.

4. Matters arising:

a. The wall around the church is in need of repair. It is an A+B responsibility and it has now been surveyed by them. Some repair work to the gate area has been commenced but not the wall. Cllr McNaughton to chase.

b. The land to the rear of 62 Forest View persistently floods and local residents want to know who owns the land to seek a remedy. (First raised 22/1/14). Cllr McNaughton raised this with the CEO of ACHA. It seems the water collects on a piece of waste ground and crosses ACHA land to the nearest drain 100 yards away. Ownership of the land is being sought and joint responsibility being investigated. The tenant is to receive a visit from ACHA.

c. A member of the public asked if the trees either side of the road from the Hall to the church could be pruned as they interfered with the street lights and buses/lorries in the centre of the road forced cars into the insecure (and now muddy) edge of the road. Cllr McNaughton reported that the Queen’s Baton Relay (QBR) worked its magic and the work has been done.

d. Under Health Report at an earlier meeting Iain McGregor suggestion that the proposed whistleblowing code of conduct be fully notified to NHS staff. Heather Grier offered to chase-up and report. (First raised 22/1/14). Heather sent in a report outlining that the whistleblowing code was available to all staff on the NHS intranet. That does not actually answer the concern about notification. How about utilising the line of text on payslips and incorporating it as part of the induction course for new employees?

e. Archie had raised with the Post Office Company the question of the temporary status of our PO’s opening hours (MP and MSP had also been engaged). No firm answer had been forthcoming and he will persist in pressurising them for an answer.

f. Iain McGregor raised the following outstanding points:

i.   Roadside ditch on Strathlachlan Hall brae (first raised Jan 2012). Was to be addressed when the water main (iii, below) has been sorted. Recent correspondence shows that this is not going to happen so Cllr McNaughton will now chase with A+B the question of the ditch.

ii. Strachur head tank Japanese knotweed infestation (first raised at CC10/10/12, but taken up with Scottish Water since at least 2010). Les raised this in his letter to the Chairman as noted below. Treatment at an appropriate time has now been promised.

iii. The need for a new water main, Strathlachlan. A circular argument of inaction has taken a grip. The 4” water main is not deep enough and keeps bursting, the lack of depth makes it unsuitable for driving through a new liner, only trenching and burying is appropriate but this would lead to an unwanted road closure. Some residents were concerned at the thought of road closure Cllr McNaughton stated that no such closure could take place without consultation. Iain now has a letter to say that the main will not be replaced during the current round of capital spending. The next round is 2015 – 2021!

iv. Strathlachlan roadsigns, (first raised at CC meeting on 10/3/10. Cllr McNaughton says that the job had now been allocated but still no date fixed.


5. Health report: Heather Grier, not being present, had submitted a written report an hour or two before the meeting. With insufficient time to assimilate the detail and do it justice Les promised to circulate the reports to all those present. The following issues were covered.


a. NHS whistleblowing policy distribution.

b. The bundling of postal districts under the banner of Cairndow.

c. A report on the recent meeting of the Patient Participation Group.

d. Reports on Reshaping Care for Older People, Self-Directed Support and Health and Social Care Integration.


6. Police report: PC Eddie McGunnigal was not in attendance, there was no report.


7. Secretary’s report:

a. The current position regarding the works associated with the school crossing was explained. The dragons’ teeth road markings are not yet in place. Les had written to enquire what had happened to the promised dragons’ teeth and moving the 40mph limit 100 metres south, reply awaited. The relevance of this is that once the markings are in place fresh traffic survey information can be taken to check the effectiveness of the improvements and to meet with road engineers to press for the further improvements originally outlined in the letter of 26/1/14.

b. As noted above Les had been in contact with the Chairman of Scottish Water. In the light of the disappointing reply received by Iain McGregor a fresh approach will have to be devised.

c. Les wrote to CI Gary Stitt, Police Scotland, for details of the traffic survey conducted at the school crossing in October 2013. The reply showed some isolated instances of high speed, 65 and 64 mph morning and afternoon. Most concerning was the high average speed of over a third of the traffic, 45 and 46 mph, morning and afternoon.

d. The A+B Roads Dept had cleared the weeds and bushes along the single-track portion of the Shore Road following submissions by Les and Cllr McNaughton.

e. Improved lighting for the car park at the Memorial Hall had now been installed but we’ll have to wait for darker evenings to appreciate the impact.


8. Treasurer’s report: The most significant expenditure since the last meeting was on the QBR Gala Day. The overall cost was £4696 with substantial sums being received by way of grant: £3225 Lottery Fund, £800 local fundraisers, £500 A+B, the shortfall was as a result of unbudgeted insurance that the Community Council was able to cover.

9. The Emergency Plan: Jean Donaldson has now placed the EP on the website. A question was asked, “Did we get the emergency pack?”


10. Community Action Plan: Since the last meeting the Community Agent had progressed with the analysis of the survey forms as well as the interviewing of key individuals in the community. The aim was of having a draft plan available for the end of June and a display/presentation at the QBR Gala Day, 13/7/14, was met. Following the display the final draft will be distributed for comment in the first week of August with the aim of publication at the end of August.


11. Hydro schemes: The proposed presentation on the options available for the establishment of a body to collect and disburse the Community Benefit payments has been moved to October to fit with key speakers.


12. Transport update:

a. A complaint has been raised that McGills had not produced a timetable showing the times of buses relevant to hospital visiting times. It seems that the timetables are on the buses but not elsewhere. Cllr McNaughton and Archie will raise this at the regular Transport Meeting.

b. The weeds and bushes alongside the single track section of the shore road (A886) had grown to the point at which it was difficult to see approaching cars. The A+B Roads Dept had cleared the weeds and bushes along the single-track portion of the Shore Road following submissions by Cllr McNaughton and Les.


13. Any other business:

a. Archie expressed the thanks of the Community Council and the wider community to the organisers of the QBR Gala Day. It was widely recognised as a great dy’s entertainment.

b. The gabion basket breakwater at St Catherines has now been removed prior to threatened enforcement action.


14. Date of next meeting: 22nd October 2014, 19:30, Strathlachlan Community Hall.


Les Earle, Secretary, Strachur District Community Council