March 2021 Minutes

Balquhidder, Lochearnhead & Strathyre
Community Council Minutes – 10th March 2021

This meeting took place online via Zoom on 10th March 2021.

Present: David Johnston (DJ), William Dalziel (WD), Andrew Poulter (AP), Ruth McLusky
(RM), Donald McLaren (DM).

Apologies: Jim Heron (JH), Angus Cameron (AC); Cllr Evelyn Tweed (ET), Michelle Flynn
(MF), Stirling Council.


Cllr Martin Earl (ME), Cllr Jeremy McDonald (JM); Billy Ronald (BR), National
Park; Inspector Andrew Bushell (AB), Police Scotland; Andy Aitken (AA), Chair,
Killin Community Council; Paul Hicks, minute-taker.


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  1. Approval of minutes

    It was proposed by AP and seconded by RM, that the minutes of the
    meeting on 27th January 2021 should be accepted and this was
    approved unanimously.


  2. Declarations of interest

    None made.


  3. Police Report

    PC Will Diamond had recently been transferred from rural policing to a
    new rôle and, on 23rd February 2021, DJ had sent a le tter of
    appreciation to the Police Divisional Commander. In his comments, DJ
    had made reference to the way in which PC Diamond had served the
    local community exceptionally well and set a high standard for others
    to follow. He listed the numerous projects and creative ideas initiated
    by PC Diamond and his contribution by way of regular articles in Theand reports to the community council, concluding by wishing
    him well in his future career.


  4. Community Policing Team

    DJ invited Inspector Andrew Bushell (AB) of the Trossachs & Teith
    Community Policing Team to address the meeting. AB began by
    thanking members for the letter of appreciation and then announced
    that a new officer had been identified to serve in this area and would
    shortly be moving to Lochearnhead to take up residence in the police




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    accommodation. He apologised for the lack of a formal report but
    stated that there had been only two instances of anti-social behaviour
    (relating to the pandemic legislation) since the previous community
    council meeting. An increase on the usual visitor numbers is expected
    once the current restrictions are eased at what is likely to be the
    beginning of April. In anticipation of this, the police have been
    working closely with Stirling Council and the National Park Authority
    to provide a full range of resources for the summer season. They plan
    to call upon Council Enforcement Officers, Special Constables and the
    Police Motorcycle Unit. Other events will inevitably draw resources
    away but the Community Policing Team is determined to make the
    most of what is available. The local Divisional Commander is the Rural
    Lead for Police Scotland and has sponsored a new post of Rural Crime
    Police Officer to supplement existing resources. AB concluded by
    reminding members that he could always be contacted by email at” and invited questions.

    AP asked about the requested change in the local bye-law concerning
    alcohol consumption. AB replied that the change has been received
    favourably, although a statutory consultation will be required. Stirling
    Council is optimistic that the revised bye-law may be passed by June
    or July 2021. DJ thought that the measure was not controversial for
    local residents who considered it a positive measure to deal with
    antisocial behaviour. ME added that the Scottish Government had
    given approval in principle, but went on to mention that there was no
    equivalent bye-law in place at Killin and it would be good to consider
    applying the new bye-law there in due course as well.



  5. Speeding in Strathyre

    DJ then proposed bringing forward item 10 on the agenda and this
    was agreed and discussed as item 5. RM stated that many vehicles
    were still travelling too fast through Strathyre. The Safety Camera
    Team is there regularly, but local people still have concerns. It hadn't
    been possible to construct a pedestrian crossing but the possibility of
    using a sign that indicated drivers' speeds was discussed. Life-sized,
    cardboard models of a police officer holding a speed camera were also
    suggested. AA mentioned that Killin CC had purchased two such
    cardboard figures, but one had been stolen and the other had been
    destroyed by bad weather. Other traffic calming measures were
    discussed, but ME pointed out that the roads in ques tion are trunk


    RM to contact Stirling Council regarding interactive traffic signs.




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    roads and the national imperative is to keep traffic moving on these
    roads. It was suggested that an enquiry be made of Stirling Council to
    see what interactive traffic signs are available.


  6. Dean Lockhart, MSP

    A request had been sent to Dean Lockhart, MSP for Mid-Scotland &
    Fife, inviting him to join this meeting of the community council. This
    had been accepted but Mr Lockhart had since sent his sincere
    apologies as another meeting had urgently required his presence at
    short notice.


  7. Postponed Business

    The following items have been postponed until the current restrictions
    have been relaxed:

    1. Lesley Milne's presentation on Town Break Dementia Support

    2. The installation of lights between Balvaig Bridge and A84, Strathyre.

    3. Parking in Callander. ME gave an update regarding the proposed
      Community Parking Management Scheme, explaining that there is no
      longer any budget for this project so it is likely to be delayed.


  8. Matters arising from previous meeting

    1. Gritting and waste bins in Strathyre. MF had provided WD with
      relevant details of Stirling Council's Winter Service Policy. These can be
      seen on the community council's website at:

      WD stated that he had liaised with local residents and drawn up a map
      of ideal locations to place grit piles. This had been forwarded to MF
      who has passed them on to the relevant department. ME advised that
      it might be helpful to submit a formal request for a site meeting in
      Strathyre to agree where grit should be placed.

    2. Survey of local bridges. MF had reported that several local bridges
      had been scheduled for repair in April, although this could be a ffected
      by weather conditions.




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      RM to contact Bruce Reekie, senior manager, StirlingCouncil.

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    3. Additional members for Community Council. DJ reported that an
      advert had been circulated but no interest had been forthcoming.


  9. Alyn Smith, MSP

    On 15th February 2021, a meeting took place between DJ and RM
    from the Community Council and Alyn Smith, MSP for Stirling. They
    discussed timber transport and place planning. Mr Smith offered to
    talk to the National Park about offering some further assistance.


  10. Correspondence

    1. New household waste and recycling policy. RM reported that, on 16th
      February 2021, Stirling Council had adopted a new policy on
      household waste and recycling. Details of this policy are available on
      the community council's website at:

      ME reported that the local councillors had attempted to place a hold
      on this policy review, but the motion was passed nonetheless. AP
      asked about collections that cannot be made, owing to bad weather
      or other circumstances. ME replied that the Council does not normally
      have the resources to provide additional collections and bins have to
      wait for the next scheduled uplift.

    2. Community Partnership. On 4th February 2021, the Community
      Partnership took the decision at its AGM to wind up the Partnership
      and cease all activity on 31st March 2021. Its ongoing initiatives and
      projects will be transferred to the National Park Authority and the
      Countryside Trust. Three rôles on the board of the Countryside Trust
      will be filled from local communities and both the National Park
      Authority and the Countryside Trust will be sending out bulle tins with
      further information to keep people up to date with the continuing
      work. DJ proposed that the Community Council should apply to join
      the Countryside Trust and this was agreed.

    3. Coordinated response to tourism. On 4th March 2021, Andy Aitken,
      Chair of Killin Community Council had written, proposing that both
      community councils should keep in touch and coordinate responses to
      an envisaged increase in problems such as wild camping, li tter and
      congestion during the approaching summer season. Killin Community


    RM to write to the Countryside Trust.


    Copies of minutes to be sent to Chair of Killin Community



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    Council is advocating both a regional and a national plan to help
    manage the situation to the benefit of everyone. He suggested that he
    and DJ could keep in touch via email to discuss problems and liaise
    over potential co-operation. DJ suggested that an exchange of minutes
    could be useful. This was agreed.

    AP asked if the National Park could make any contribution. ME replied
    that there are now regular meetings between the Police and National
    Park to plan a coordinated response to problems that may arise. DJ
    asked about Stirling Council's Enforcement Officers and their working
    conditions and ME replied that many of them are now working on
    more flexible rosters and this should provide an important, addi tional
    resource. If both community councils submit a joint request for these
    resources, there is a greater chance that they will be allocated to this
    area. BR suggested that Strathfillan Community Council might also be
    willing to participate in a joint request for resources.

    Council until further notice.


    DJ to liaise with Killin and Strathfillan CC about a joint response letter.



  11. Payphone Box Removal

    A telephone box at Mhor 84, near Balquhidder, had been removed
    despite the Community Council responding to a consultation and
    advising that it should be kept. Enquiries had been made with the
    National Park Authority, which had circulated the original information
    and it transpired that British Telecom had not received any
    instructions from Stirling Council (which had organised the
    consultation process) so went ahead and removed the telephone box,
    based on the low usage of the facility. ME acknowledged that a
    mistake had been made but stated that Stirling Council had since
    offered to pay for the reinstatement of the telephone box. This was
    welcomed by all members. It was pointed out that it need not be a
    working telephone box and various options were discussed as to other
    uses for the box, such as the provision of an interac tive, information
    point, utilising the Balquhidder broadband scheme.


    DJ to liaise with Stirling Council regarding restoration of a telephone box.


  12. Timber Transport

    1. Progress of grant application for an upgrade to the C33 road. DJ
      reported that another meeting of the working group is being planned
      and a proposal for an upgrade to the C33 road had been prepared. A
      new version of the Timber Transport Management Plan had also been
      prepared to take account of the views expressed by the local



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      community. This now needs to be negotiated with the industry
      representatives. AP suggested that the previous plan could be used
      but DJ pointed out that the most recent plan was more
      comprehensive and it would be good to seek agreement with the
      industry on the additional points as well. He also mentioned that the
      Ballimore Road is disintegrating rapidly and this needs to be addressed

    2. Current activity. There is no transporting of timber going on at
      present. The re-location of a British Telecom telegraph pole that had
      been impeding progress over a bridge is progressing. DM expressed
      concerns about several bridges that had been damaged with no sign
      of any repairs being made, despite promises from the industry about
      making good any damage caused. RM responded that repairs have
      been scheduled for April 2021.


  13. Planning Matters

    Ref: 2021/0026/PPP. An application had been submitted to build
    three dwelling-houses on a plot adjacent to Ravenscroft Road at
    Lochearnhead. Concerns had been expressed locally about access but
    full details of the current situation were not known. ME added that he
    was aware of the situation and noted that some independent,
    professional advice might be required. DJ agreed to contact the
    Planning Authority on behalf of the community council.


    DJ to write to Planning Authority, noting concern over access.



  14. Place Making in the National Park

    a) DJ reported that a meeting had taken place on 2nd March 2021 to
    consider the results of a survey, recently completed for Strathyre and
    Balquhidder. There is now a proposal for further meetings with school-
    children, local business people and residents to take place in May or
    June. It would be good if physical meetings were allowed by then, but
    Zoom meetings will be organised, if necessary.


  15. Matters from ward councillors and National Park

    1. ME reported that the Stirling Council budget would be debated on 11 th
      March. There is likely to be a council tax freeze, thanks to money
      provided to councils by the Scottish Government.




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    2. BR said that the main topic under discussion by the National Park at
      present is the potential influx of tourists once the “lock-down”
      restrictions are eased. ME added that the subject of sustainable
      transport is increasingly coming under discussion as well.

    3. JM mentioned that Stirling Council is considering the renewed use of
      participatory budgeting so it may be worth thinking about local
      priorities in anticipation of any invitation to contribute to the process.



  16. Any other competent business

  1. Road Signs. DJ had been informed about a new road sign for single
    track roads in Glen Orchy and wondered if this might be useful for our
    area. It contained a lot of information but, given the apparent
    ignorance of many drivers on the appropriate use of rural roads, it
    could be useful. It was agreed to investigate further. AP added that he
    had written two letters to Bruce Reekie at Stirling Council about the
    existing road signs for single track roads, but, to date, had received no

  2. Cycle track at Strathyre. WD reminded members of problems with
    cyclists using the path in Strathyre that runs behind the children's play
    area and the car park at the village shop. These problems had been
    investigated by Dave Robinson, Access Officer for the National Park
    but, to date, nothing further had been heard. Part of this route is
    privately owned and the property owners are now concerned about
    the return of visitors to the area and further misuse of the path,
    particularly by cyclists. WD asked if a letter could be sent to Dave
    Robinson, requesting a reply. This was agreed.

  3. Car Park at The Broch in Strathyre. WD reported that this had been
    closed during the “lock-down” but Forestry & Land, Scotland, who still
    own the property, had now intervened and written a letter, insisting
    that the car park should remain open. Local residents are not happy
    about this and regard it as a health and safety matter during the
    ongoing pandemic. WD asked that a letter be sent from the
    Community Council, asking for the position to be reviewed. DM
    strongly supported this. ME commented that Forestry & Land,appeared to be basing its demand solely on the terms of its
    national policy regarding vehicle parks. He suggested that writing to
    the Chief Executive Officer and making a case on the grounds of the
    proximity of this particular car park to a community of vulnerable
    people might be helpful. This was agreed.



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DJ to write to Carlyn Fraser regarding signs for the single track section of the C33 road.


RM to contact Dave Robinson with a copy to BR.


DJ to write a letter to the CEO of Forestry.

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There was no further business and, at 9:30 p.m., DJ declared the
meeting to be closed. The next meeting, which will be the Annual, is scheduled to take place on Wednesday 21st April2021 at Balquhidder Village Hall (if permitted) or online via Zoom.




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