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Community Council Meeting Minutes 2003

MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON TUESDAY 14 JANUARY 2003

PRESENT

Amish Amin, Norma David, Grace Weir, Gordon Weir, David Bottomley, Ken Macdonald, Rosee Macdonald, Millar Leon, Brian Young, Bill David, Nick Walker, Andrew Wilson.

IN ATTENDANCE

Cllr Alastair Nimmo, Supt Jim Clark, PC Colette Pryde, PC Graham Bartley, M Kinnear, A Hendry, Tom Barr, Rita Barr, Marie Mitchell, Lesley Brown, Fraser McAfee, Fred Storrie, Derek Campbell, Martin McLean, Linda Murray, David Findlay, Michael Quinn, James McGinlay, Blair Lawther, Archie Huggins, Margaret McGinley, Megan McGinley, Joe Hayes.

APOLOGIES

Craig Crawford, Linda Smith, Robert Scarsbrook, Christine Scarsbrook, David McKie.

MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING

The Minutes of the 10.12.2002 meeting were accepted (prop. Rosee Macdonald, sec. Norma David).

POLICE REPORT

Superintendent Jim Clark introduced PCs Colette Pryde and Graham Bartley who have just started as the community police for Lochwinnoch and Howwood. They have other commitments at times, but overall we should see an increase of almost 50% in community policing locally. Supt Clark also gave an update on recent crime figures. For Lochwinnoch and Howwood, there has been a 25% reduction in reported crime for the six months April to September 2002 (compared to the previous year); and this reflects reduced vandalism and housebreaking mainly. Weapon and drugs related crime has increased, but this may be due to increased policing rather than an increase in these crime levels.

MATTERS ARISING FROM MINUTES

None

WORKING GROUPS
Planning

Bill David, Brian Young, Andrew Wilson and Ken Macdonald.

One item only : proposals from Renfrewshire Council about sale of land adjacent to the Railway Inn. Two tenders are in: a developer would build two shops including a fast food outlet and two flats; the Railway Inn would make a car park and extend the pub, possibly also building shops (non-food) and flats. Bill David and Alastair Nimmo introduced this item which had been advertised throughout Howwood. Council policy allows any tender to be accepted but in the absence of public or other concerns, it is likely that the higher priced tender (the fast food tender) will be accepted. The current tender process is relevant to land purchase and any development would then require a formal planning application process. The views of the village are important: the CC and Cllr Nimmo will make representations to the Council. Any individual letters would be welcome and they do carry significant weight with the Council. They may be left at Howwood PO for forwarding and should be addressed to: Alex Inglis, Head Property Services, Renfrewshire Council HQ, South Building, Cotton Street, PA1 1JD. Copies could be sent to the Head of Planning, John Smart, Renfrewshire Council HQ, South Building, Cotton Street, PA1 1LL.

Andrew Wilson reported on written feedback received prior to the meeting : of 24 responses, almost all focused on the hot food aspect of the proposals. Ten responses were in favour, in terms of increasing village amenities as Howwood grows, and improving a derelict site. One response was from 14 local young people who are keen to have take away food available in Howwood. The other 14 responses were against the sale of hot food on the basis of antisocial opening hours, increased noise, litter and traffic, effects on child safety crossing Main Street, and negative impacts on parking and access to George Street; loss of Howwood’s peaceful rural atmosphere and loss of the informal parking currently available on the site were other concerns.

From the floor of the CC meeting, further comments were made. No one present was in favour of the development of a hot food outlet. It was noted that numerous sources of “fast” food exist in the surrounding area and that most deliver for a notional charge. Concerns about litter, noise (especially late into the evening), parking, traffic, child road safety and mess were all raised again; the general environmental impact, loitering and crime were also raised. In the past, there were flats on the site and on balance the meeting was not against its redevelopment in some form. However the overall opinion of the community is clearly against any hot food outlet. Any application for planning for a hot food sales licence would be likely to evoke a formal challenge.

2003 Fete

David Bottomley, David McKie, Rosee Macdonald and Amish Amin.

There are letters going to various stake holders seeking support and sponsorship for the fete. Bill David will book the school for 21.6.2003. The Hall is booked for that evening.

Margaret Fraser Commemoration

Norma David, Linda Smith and Brian Young. Donations may be made at churches and PO.

Scottish Evening

Brian Young, Bill David, Linda Smith, Robert Scarsbrook, Craig Crawford, Andrew Wilson.

The event will be on 22.2.2003 in the Hall. The Hall and Band are booked. Contacts for other entertainments are being pursued.

ROADS

Cllr Nimmo reported that the 20 mph signs on the route to school will be erected by 31.3.2003. Mayfield is scheduled for resurfacing during the summer. There were complaints about the state of the road and the pavements in Elliston Road & Place. Water leakage and poor drainage led to ice hazards in Bowfield Road (at the hairpin bend near Main Street) and Elliston Road (at Station Road) during the recent cold spell.

ENVIRONMENT

Howwood Wildlife and Woodlands is having a fund-raising quiz night at Midton Bowling Club on 17.1.2003 and a disco in the Hall on 15.2.2003. Negotiations continue on the future of the garage wilderness.

WEB SITE AND COMMUNICATION

Cllr Nimmo and Alex Hewetson are both supportive of a Howwood notice board and information centre. Apparently Lochwinnoch is looking at a similar development, so we may be able to share information. Types, costs and ideas about notice boards will be sought for the next CC.

COUNCILLOR’S REPORT

Cllr Nimmo reported that the next year’s intake for primary school will be accommodated in Howwood. He agrees that expanding the Christmas decoration of Howwood and making the installation more ceremonial would be good for village life. This will require further discussion as CC business allows.

CORRESPONDENCE (as per list attached to agenda)
Renfrewshire CCs Forum

The Forum is trying to identify the major issues across Renfrewshire. CC agreed that our three main issues, as per the agenda, are: roads, planning and village information.

AOCB

None

NEXT MEETINGS

TUESDAY 11 FEBRUARY 2003, 7.30 pm, Howwood Village Hall.

Then the following Tuesdays: 11 March; 8 April; 13 May; 10 June.

NPW/19.01.2003.

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