Gartmore Community Council
Minutes of Meeting Wednesday, 3 February 2021 Zoom Meeting
Present: Gerry McGarvey Wayne Glasse-Davies, Ian Dinwoodie, Colin Scrimgeour, Katie Goldie.
Apologies: Janet Billett (Chair), Police Scotland, Cllr Evelyn Tweed (Stirling Council), Michelle Flynn (Stirling Council)
In attendance: Willie Nisbet (LLTNP), Cllr Martin Earl (Stirling Council)
Press: No members of the press were present at meeting
Residents: Peter Sunderland
1. Declarations of Interest- No declarations
2. Adoption of previous meeting minutes- Minutes agreed by the members Proposer – Katie Goldie
Seconder – Ian Dinwoodie
3. Matters Arising
- Lady’s Walk – Katie Goldie received an update from Dave Robinson, Access Officer for Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park, who informed her that all of the Core Paths objections are now with the Scottish Reporter. All objectors have been written to. They have four weeks to respond so a final decision should be made by the end of March.
Peter Sunderland stated that there are two Core Paths that go through Gartmore Estate and are trying to ensure that children are kept safe as so much of their income comes from having children on site. This is primarily why Gartmore Estate objected to the Core Paths. Peter also stated that members of the community were welcome on Gartmore Estate and Gerry McGarvey thanked him for that.
- Tree Felling Past Archway Towards Gartmore House – In reference to application FPA7509. Katie Goldie had contacted Tim Groucher of Scottish Forestry, on behalf of Gartmore Community Council a number of times but with limited. A short response was eventually received on 16 November stating that the application was still under consideration. Later the Community Council were informed that the felling application had been granted.
Katie contacted David Anderson to discuss the lack of communication between Tim and the Community Council. David accepted that this was not acceptable but there was little point in taking it forward as Tim Groucher was about to retire. Contact details provided for Mike Strachan who Katie would be speaking with the following day (4 February 2021).
On 26 January a detailed reply from Tim Groucher was received which stated:-
“There will be a burden on Peter Sunderland to restock the site afterwards which will be of a high value to conservation and biodiversity as it will be predominantly Scots Pine”
It was also stated that all works would be out with the breeding period of the birds and mammals.
There has been a lot of communication from the community expressing their dismay at the clear felling rather than thinning as there is quite a broad spectrum of trees. There are still a number of applications for thinning and felling that are outstanding that affect Gartmore and Katie will take this up with Mike Strachan to determine whether or not these will be granted.
Katie has also had a conversation with Simon Franks, Tree Preservation Officer for Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. He believes that Scottish Forestry had taken on board the community feedback and some modifications had been made to the felling application and that Mike Strachan could provide an updated version of this. This should also state the conditions of restocking which would include Scots Pine, Oak and Norway spruce. Simon also stated that it is illegal to fell a tree that has a birds’ nest or a squirrel drey so Katie is going to speak to Ruth Holmes in an attempt to identify any dreys in the woods as these cannot be felled whilst the squirrels are in them.
Katie also spoke to Angela Newton regarding the Wee Wood. Angela will write to seek permission to clear the path once restrictions are removed. Currently there are applications for tree felling in for this area which will have an impact on the community as this path is well used.
Peter Sunderland stated that from a Gartmore Estate perspective the Archway Cottages are affected by a number of trees showing significant signs of movement. The engineer’s view is that they will need to come down before they go in to leaf. Gartmore Estate have a duty of care to keep everyone safe and Archway Wood needs to be felled in order to do this. Work had been carried out alongside Scottish Forestry Commission to find an alternative but this was not possible because of how they are growing. New squirrel boxes have been put in to other areas of the Estate and they are nesting in them. His view is that the squirrels will thrive and survive, the trees will likely come down on their own anyway. The plan is for the wood to be restocked 2.5 times what
was already there but not necessarily in the same positions as the issues will recur again further down the line.
- Road Safety Measures, Feedback from 21 January Meeting – After concerns were raised with the Community Council regarding concerns of dangerous driving and road safety at the school a meeting took place with representatives from Gartmore Community Council, Parents’ Group, Gartmore Primary School, Cllr Martin Earl and Stirling Council.
It was decided that rather than looking at the issue of speeding the primary concern was that of safety and particularly children’s’ safety. It was thought that this would be an easier issue to progress as it is difficult to verify a speeding problems and there are significant restrictions in place that are legally enforceable.
Stirling Council officers will come up with a range of options for discussion and community consultation, which Gartmore Community Council will facilitate, before a decision for implementation is made. There is a concern with timeline because there may be a source of funding available but proposals will have to be in before the budget is set. The head teacher was also asked to revise the school safety plan.
4. Reports- External Police Scotland
Report provided from 1 December 2020 to 31 January 2021
- Antisocial Behaviour –.No incidents reported
- Road Safety - .No incidents reported
- Theft -. No incidents reported. Sheds and properties in surrounding areas have been broken into. Community members are urged to be vigilant and report anything suspicious.
There have been an increase in the calls regarding hare coursing in Trossachs and Teith area. Please be vigilant and report any instances of this act.
If there are any issues to discuss, please contact Callander Police Office on 101 or email TrossachsTeithCPT@scotland.pnn.police.uk
Aberfoyle Farm – An application has been submitted to erect a second agricultural building to house equipment. There is still a current application for part change of use to accommodation of an agricultural building.
No community member has raised any objections so Gartmore Community Council will neither object nor support this application.
Both Cllr Martin Earl and Willie Nisbet agreed that this was a sensible approach to take.
5. Reports- Internal Sub Groups Community Trust:
Discussions took place regarding investment strategy for fund held by Gartmore
Community Trust (GCT) for any hall repairs and maintenance that may be required over the next twenty years. The Trust are planning on interviewing Investment Advisors and selecting one who can help them to find a range of investment opportunities to help grow the fund whilst keeping the money safe.
A great deal of work has gone into the development of the websites for the Village Hall and Gartmore. Stephen Hart, Fiona Patterson and Ross Patterson have created a wedding website as part of the Village Hall and this will be ready to go once restrictions change.
It had been raised that the defibrillator battery level is very low due to the temperature in the phone box. GCT are trying to find ways to get the defibrillator back on track and suitable for use. There are a number of options available: buying a new, low wattage defibrillator and connecting this to the existing low-power electrical supply; upgrading the supply so that the device can continue to be used along with a thermostatic heater. Both of these require Trossachs Search and Rescue (TSAR) as the ‘adopters’ of the kiosk to get permission from BT to carry out the necessary electrical work. In the event that this does not happen the existing defibrillator cabinet could be moved to a new position on the front wall of the Village Hall where it could be connected to the hall’s electrical supply. Currently waiting to hear from TSAR and hoping for a resolution soon.
Gerry McGarvey also pointed out that a community member had raised this with GCC and whether or not any money left from the SSEN grant could be used. Wayne Glasse-Davies stated that the grant could not be used for this purpose but other funds could be considered. GCT would bear this in mind whilst awaiting correspondence from TSAR.
Gerry will respond to community member to make them aware that GCT are currently dealing with this and will explore the best action to take.
6. Community Council Business – Treasurer’s Report
The current balance of the Gartmore Community Council account is £1,278.29, down from the previous balance of £1,466.90 reported in December. The expenditure comprised a payment to the Minute Taker, a contribution to the Chris Sheldon Honorarium, a donation to the Lady Haig Poppy Fund in lieu of wreath purchase and gritter-related costs.
There are no outstanding invoices, but a Minute Taker payment for this February meeting will become due.
It was also proposed that the remainder of the SSEN grant should be given to Gartmore Shop due to the additional costs that the shop has incurred in making it a safe place throughout the pandemic. All were agreed. Peter Sunderland gave thanks to GCC.
Item 1 – Gartmore News Content – Concerns were raised that the full minutes of the last meeting were published in Gartmore News and these minutes had also not been adopted. It was agreed that going forward only adopted minutes would be published and it did not need to be the full minutes and should be an edited version. The purpose of publishing the minutes is to remind the community that GCC are there and working on their behalf and not to deter community members from joining meetings.
Action – Edited highlights would be published in Gartmore News from now on.
Item 2- Village Website – GCT are in the process of trying to update the website and are asking GCC whether or not they wish to have a small subpage for minutes, planning applications, introductions etc. This would be an additional communication system. Members are encouraged to look at Strathfillan website as an example of a good website.
Wayne asked whether the secretary would have direct access to the website to upload documents and make changes. Katie explained that she thought the website was very user friendly. All agreed to proceed with this.
Action – Katie will go back to GCT with the decision.
Item 3 – Defibrillator Battery – Discussed above under Community Trust summary.
Item 4 –Concern Raised Regarding Play Park Safety – A member of the community emailed GCC to raise concerns regarding safety issues at the local playpark and age inappropriate use of the play equipment. This has been noted by the Community Council.
Item 5 – Flooding, Alex Paton’s House – Work was eventually undertaken on this issue but there is a backflow again which arose earlier this week. There seems to be an issue underneath a private property. If this continues GCC need to ensure that this is progressed to find the blockage causing the flooding. Cllr Evelyn Tweed has requested that Stirling Council investigate this issue thoroughly, Cllr Martin Earl will take this up but requested a synopsis of the issue. It was also raised that if water runs on to a location it is not a fault of the land owner concerned. Eric Wilson, Area Roads Officer, was previously supervising this work.
Action – Gerry to provide the information to Cllr Martin Earl.
Item 6 – Council Budget – Cllr Martin Earl explained that Stirling Council Budget Meetings would be taking place soon. The Council has again split determination of Council Tax and the general budget setting due to the lateness of getting a settlement from Scottish Government. Council Tax will be set on 25 February and the main budget meeting will be 11 March. Local authorities will be compensated by Scottish Government the equivalent of up to 3% Council Tax rise if this is not increased. Budget settlement is fine.
Gerry thanked Cllr Martin Earl for his updates here and throughout.
8. Next meeting - Wednesday 7rd April 2021 – 7.30pm Location TBC