Nov 2021 Minutes

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Minutes of Meeting on 4th November 2021

Present: Colin Cameron (Chair), Robert Young (Vice-chair), Alison Limbert (Secretary), Alison Lamont
Chalmers, Claudia Duncan, Luci Rooney

In attendance: Councillor Rob Davies, Liz Mottram

Apologies: Fraser Allan, John Nicholson, Christine Wilson (Treasurer)

Minutes were taken by Alison Lamont Chalmers as the Community Council is still seeking to appoint a
minute taker.


  1. Recording of Declarations of Interest



  2. Adoption of Minutes of Previous Meeting

    The Minutes from the meeting on 7 November 2021 were proposed as accurate by Alison Limbert
    and seconded by Robert Young.


  3. Matters arising

    1. Endrick Gardens-Buchanan St path – Stirling Council has sent legal letters to the owner/occupiers
      of the two properties that have extended their properties across the pathway, asking them to
      remove the fences back to their legal boundaries. They are awaiting their responses.

    2. 13-19 Buchanan St – Stirling Council is trying to identify ownership of these abandoned
      conversions after it appears the contractor, Glasgow Together CIC, has gone defunct.

    3. King’s Highway – Balfron Pathways has agreed to lead on this project for the village with support
      from the Community Council as required.

    4. Remembrance Sunday – Stirling Council and Police Scotland have agreed to support a brief road
      closure on 14 November. A wreath has been purchased on behalf of the Community Council.


  4. Projects

    1. Space for Living: Phase 2 of the project to make environmental improvements within Balfron,
      which was due to begin in October, has been postponed until Autumn 2022. This is due to the
      urgent need to prioritise work on the Branshogle and Catterburn bridges and avoid further
      diversions and delays through the village.

    2. Phone box refurbishment: The removal of the phone box for refurbishment has been delayed due
      to transport problems for the contractor. Alternatives are being sought, and a new date will be
      communicated as soon as possible. A temporary store has been purchased and will be in use when
      the phone box is being refurbished. Related Health & Safety issues are being pursued. Possible
      expansion of provision was discussed with the opportunity to provide educational opportunities
      to local schools/guides/scouts re sustainability and reducing waste. ACTION: LR

      Balfron Phone Box is now one of the Co-op Local Community Fund projects. 2p in every pound
      spent by a Co-op member on Co-op branded goods goes to their chosen project.

  5. Police Report

    The police report is available on the BCC website and noticeboards.

  6. Elected Councillor's report

    Cllr. Davies noted that Stirling Council has approved a bid to be named City of Culture 2025. He has made
    representations that rural Stirling should not be ignored in the application.

    He reported on the latest meetings concerning the overall state of bridges around the villages of West
    Stirlingshire. Catterburn Bridge in Croftamie has been assessed by contractors and engineering
    options are being discussed. No timescale yet for repair. The stretch of the A811 road that is being
    undermined by the River Endrick beyond Drymen Bridge is being repaired this coming week.

    Ballochruin Bridge has reopened. There followed a lengthy discussion at which a number of issues
    including inadequate signage between Blane Smithy and Ballat Crossroads were raised. Concerns were
    also noted about the poor state of Blanewater Bridge. Cllr. Davies agreed to take these up with the
    appropriate officers in Stirling Council. He noted that bridge repair problems were endemic across all
    of Scotland’s local authorities due to historic lack of investment, and that this was putting pressure on
    the availability of contractors and materials. ACTION: Cllr. Davies

    Cllr. Davies raised the possibility that Community Council meetings could adopt a hybrid format that
    would allow both in person and video contributions. This is already being used in some communities. It
    was pointed out that the firewalls in the High School only allow access to the broadband network for
    school-related use. He agreed to raise this with the Education department. ACTION: Cllr. Davies


  7. Treasurer report

    The budget is showing an increase of £840.87 due to receiving the Stirling Council administration grant.
    It was noted that a proportion of this will have to be returned if we fail to appoint a Minute Taker.

    There have been no outgoings since the last meeting.


  8. Planning report

    Two new planning applications have been submitted since the last meeting but were considered
    uncontroversial. As a result of the application to build a house at Indians Farm, we submitted a
    comment requesting that public access along the route of the disused railway be considered during the
    planning process. Details of all applications are available at
    applications/. An ash tree removed from Barnwell Drive had Ash dieback disease.


  9. Chair - including Correspondence

    1. Endrick Gardens SUDS - A representative from Rural Stirling Housing inspected the SUDS area which
      is, again, overgrown. Both RSHA and BCC will pursue Scottish Water to make safe. ACTION: CC

    2. The next Scottish Census will take place on March 2022 when it will be possible to register
      electronically for the first time. There are to be online workshops lasting 30 minutes over a number
      of dates. Colin will seek clarification on the format. ACTION: CC

    3. Colin noted that Lynne McKinley from the Community Engagement team has moved to a new role
      and that meetings of the Rural South West Area Forum have been suspended until a replacement is

    4. The meeting confirmed the Schedule of Meetings for 2022/23 as the first Thursday of every month
      excepting January and July. These will be sent to Stirling Council. ACTION: Ali

  10. Update on Bridges – this was considered under the Elected Councillor’s report.


  11. Community Survey – Alison Limbert provided feedback on the results of the recent Community
    Survey. We had 18 online responses with the majority of respondents over the age of 35. The
    difficulties of engaging younger people were discussed. A number of interesting ideas emerged
    and the detail will be considered at a future meeting. A review of the BCC website will also be
    undertaken. ACTION: ALi


  12. AOB

Plans for Christmas: Duff’s Christmas Trees will be approached for the donation of two community

Christmas trees as before. ACTION: CD

Luci proposed that Elsie Andrews be approached to switch on the Christmas lights in
acknowledgement of her 35 years serving the community through McFarlane’s ironmongers. This
was welcomed by all. Luci also volunteered to run the Santa Carols van again in the continuing
absence of a Community Choir concert due to Covid restrictions. ACTION: CC/LRColin will approach the Primary School to arrange carol singing at the Library. ACTION: CC


Next meeting - Thursday 2nd December 2021 at 7.30pm, Balfron High School