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Minutes of Meeting on 13th September 2022 Blairlogie Reading Room
Present: Mary Maxwell-Irving (Chair), Robin Kelsall (Vice Chair), Peter Jennings (Secretary), Cameron Campbell (Treasurer), and Georgina Cairns.
In Attendance: Councillor Jim Thomson and 5 Residents
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II: The Chair acknowledged the sad passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday 8 September and that the proclamation of the new Sovereign, His Majesty King Charles III, had been read in the City of Stirling by the Chief Executive of Stirling Council on Sunday 11 September.
1. Apologies: Susan Allen, Community Policing Team (PCs Greig Lowery and Stuart Gray)
2. Declarations of Interest: None
3. Approval of Minutes of Meeting of 19th July 2022: The minutes of the meeting held on 19 July 2022 were approved (proposed by Cameron Campbell and seconded by Robin Kelsall).
4. Matters Arising
Toilet Facilities for Walkers : A resident had asked if the Future Forest Company had any ideas for tackling the lack of toilet facilities in the area as it becomes more popular. Jamie Adcock, the Dumyat Estate Manager, has responded that: “It's not currently in our one to five year plans which focus on tree planting and biodiversity but once these projects are established we'd like to see an increase in ecotourism with provision for facilities to support this.”
Blairlogie Orchard Carpark Improvements : Ken Todd had suggested to Stirling Council at the meeting on 15 July the need for improvements to the Blairlogie Orchard car park and surrounding area, with funding from the speed reduction project underspend.
The car park also requires a rubbish bin (last refused in July 2021). Danny Gibson was to try again to get a bin put in the park.
Councillor Thomson took a note of these two issues and agreed to follow up.
Clearing Footpaths : Angus Annan contacted TCV (The Conservation Volunteers) to ask if the higher path of the Diamond Jubilee Way starting behind Blairlogie Park could be looked at and cleared as necessary. A TCV van was spotted in Blairlogie Orchard carpark on 25 August, but Georgina Cairns confirmed that the path remains thick with vegetation.
Electronic ‘Your Speed’ Sign at West End of Blairlogie : Danny Gibson had told Ken he would try get a ‘Your Speed’ sign at the west end of the village to replace the current electronic sign. No action has been taken on this. Councillor Thomson took a note of this and agreed to follow up.
5. Treasurer’s Report
Cameron Campbell gave the latest position. Bank balance at last meeting was £2098.76. Income since has been the Community Council Grant from Stirling Council of £405. There has been no expenditure since the last meeting. Balance at 13 September was
£2503.76. An invoice is expected from Stirling Council for the additional play equipment (we already have the £1350 funds granted for this which, when spent, would leave the balance at £1153.76).
6. Police Report
The police report was submitted to the community council covering the period 13 July to 13 September 2022. In summary, there were no undetected cases and 1 detected case: dangerous driving, which was reported to the Procurator Fiscal. The police will continue to conduct speed checks in the Blairlogie area and surrounding roads.
The temporary Police Inspector, Sonia Connolly, has informed the community council that police attendance at, and content of reports to, community councils is to be reviewed. She has invited views on what could be improved. The following, which the secretary will relay to the Inspector, was agreed:
· Reports to make clear that the content relates to the Logie Community Council area;
· Sufficient detail on the cases to meet local interest, without divulging names (what/where/when, eg for this month’s dangerous driving case, the report could add what type of vehicle, where the dangerous driving occurred and when);
· Continued attendance of police representative at the community council would be welcomed, as the verbal briefing is effective and encourages dialogue.
7. Planning Report
Robin Kelsall gave an update. There were two items: planning permission had been granted, with conditions, for the works on 2 Rowanbank (which is underway), and planning enforcement for a fence at Blair House. The latter was surprising and details, and what action was required, were not clear. Robin will enquire further.
8. Blairlogie Speed Reduction Project
Results of July 2022 traffic survey had been delivered. The results from all the surveys, both pre- and post-30mph limit, are being compared. The headline is that average speeds have reduced but the number of vehicles speeding in excess of the 30mph limit is still very high. Councillor Thomson believed the reduction in 85th percentile speed to be a significant determinant in whether further measures were warranted. His own view was that the 5.9mph reduction in 85th percentile speed (from 43.5mph to 37.6mph, westbound figures) is not sufficient and he would have expected a greater reduction. He also mentioned that the petition for the speed reduction is still open, and will have to go back to the council committee for sign-off before it is closed. There is a
meeting with Stirling Council next month to discuss the survey results and see what further measures could and should be taken.
9. Blairlogie Burn Flood Risk Assessment and Culvert/Downstream Burn Clearing
The next meeting with Stirling Council (led by Dot Reid) is on 16th September. The Council has also been exploring ownership of the burn through the village in order to assign responsibilities. There was much debate on this contentious aspect, with residents insisting that Stirling Council took on responsibility from Central Region Council which had been maintaining the burn through the village. Councillor Thomson stated that nothing has been found yet confirming that Stirling Council is responsible, but Dot Reid’s team is still researching ownership and responsibilities.
Post-meeting note – re Meeting on 16th September:
· WPS Consultants being consulted on various aspects, viz:
a. Possible measures within the grounds of Blairlogie Castle
b. Possibility of installation of a grille (aka hake, screen, filter) further down the burn
c. Survey of fall on south side of the A91 to the point where the level has fallen by 1 metre
· The culvert has been checked as a priority during recent rainfall events (hourly during very heavy rain). Maintenance will otherwise be 6-monthly.
· Communication with landowners on the south side of the A91 has been passed to the Council’s legal department
· No action has been taken yet re the possibility of Community Justice clients clearing the burn in the village but this is to be pursued. No further mention was made of identifying ‘owners’.
· The future Forest Company will be approached when access to their land is required.
10. Improvements to the Blairlogie Play Park
Work started installing the multi-unit on 23 August and is nearing completion. Work started on installing the additional equipment (the two springers) on 8 September and this is complete. A picnic bench is also to the provided. Stirling Council has confirmed that the old swings, which have been repaired and painted, will remain in place, as residents wished.
The Future Forest Company remains keen to do something in the area adjacent, possibly a willow dome. Timing wise, Jamie Adcock as advised: “this is something we'd be looking to do after the main woodland creation takes place which currently is planned for Spring 2023.”
11. Community Resilience Plan
Susan Allan had tendered he apologies and so no update was given.
12. Active Travel Route – Blairlogie to Stirling University
Clackmannanshire Council (Gary Fraser) has confirmed that the City Region Deal funding bid application is still with the Scottish Government and being assessed. There is
therefore very little to add at this time until the Council gets the feedback required to advance the project.
SPEN Beauly – Denny Pylon Mitigation meetings : Councillor Thomson mentioned that from his meetings with SPEN that he could confirm that work might start on the Powis Loan footpath in November. He also confirmed that the issue of swan deaths and the need for bird diverters had not been dismissed and was still in consideration.
Blocked Drains : Sue Jamieson reported that there was a blockage in the shared outfall pipe south of her and her neighbours’ properties that was causing a serious problem with the septic tanks and hence drains on their properties backing-up (these properties being the last and lowest on this shared outfall system before the water is discharged to the Powis Burn). A contractor is working hard to find the location of the blockage.
[Post meeting note: the blockage was cleared on Thursday 15 September]
There was much discussion on this shared outfall system which carries the treated effluent from the septic tanks for many residents on the west side of the village through to discharge into the Powis Burn. One alarming point raised by a resident was that it became illegal to discharge septic tank outfall water to surface waterways from January 2020.
[Post meeting note: SEPA has confirmed that this requirement applies to England only. The full text of the response from SEPA is in the footnote1 below. The guidance for Scotland can be found at the following link: Septic tanks and private sewage treatment systems | Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) ]
[Post meeting note: While on the subject of septic tanks, residents may be aware of the cyber-attack on SEPA in December 2020 which seriously damaged its IT systems and records. It is advisable to check that SEPA has a record of your septic tank. This can be done, if you have not done so already since the cyber-attack, via the following link for septic tanks which are older than 2 years: https://www.sepa.org.uk/regulations/authorisations-and-permits/application- forms/private-sewage-treatment-system/
Furthermore, residents are also advised to forward electronic copies of any existing consent documents (including those from SEPA’s predecessor organisation, the Forth River Purification Board) to SEPA for adding to its records. The address to forward such evidence to is: Registry@sepa.org.uk]
1 SEPA regulates discharges to the water environment by way of The Water Environment (Controlled Activities) (Scotland) Regulations 2011 (as amended), known as CAR 2011. Under these Regulations, authorisations (i.e. issued under the Control of Pollution Act 1974) held on 31 March 2006 are deemed authorised and any such authorisation will be treated as having been granted under CAR 2011, subject to the same conditions that attach to it. In England, the Environment Agency required septic tanks to be upgraded by 2020; this does not apply in Scotland. (email from Liam Macrae, Environment Protection Officer, SEPA – Falkirk, Alloa, Stirling and Perth Environmental Performance dated 14 Sep 22 to Mary Maxwell-Irving)
Speed of Cyclists : Concern was expressed by a resident regarding the speed of cyclists on the east and west lanes in Blairlogie village and on the non-cycleway footpaths on the A91. Cyclists should abide by the updated Highway Code: especially the rules for cyclists (rules 59-82) with rules 62, 63, 64 and 66 pertinent in the context of sharing space with pedestrians. See following link: The Highway Code - Rules for cyclists (59 to 82)
- Guidance - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) . There are no additional measures that can be taken by the community council.
14. Date of next meeting – 15th November 2022
Dates for meetings in 2023 are as follows: 17 January
16 May (and AGM) 18 July
Secretary, Logie Community Council