The Community Council has been involved in a large number of community focused issues over the last year. We have been instrumental in supporting local residents with matters ranging from surveys to identify the issues with poor local bus services to partnering ERC with a new park build. This has also included raising funds for children’s play equipment for the new park in Waterfoot. EWCC has also continued to improve the structure and delivery of our monthly meetings to help us and our community engage better. This included bringing the time forward to 7pm and keeping public meetings down to one hour. This has helped community stakeholders such as Police Scotland and ERC departments including education and environment to attend our meetings. As Chairman I have covered some but not all of the local issues in this report that EWCC have been involved in over last twelve months. Full details have been posted on our social media sites for everyone to read. Every member of the community council has been instrumental in overcoming the challenges of building an effective community council which was newly formed in Sept 2017. All members are sincerely thanked for their commitment and support to the local community. As are our regularly attending councillors Caroline Bamforth and Jim McLean. A huge thank you goes out to Sgt Mike Morganthlaer and his local problem solving teams. Their attendance at our meetings, engaging with the community and police led support, including the traffic branch has been outstanding.
Waterfoot New Inky Pink Park.
Soon after its incorporation EWCC engaged with ERC to help move forward the new park build as it had been voted as the communities preferred option in 2016. The remaining £135k from the CALA fund was brought together with additional funding of £12000 from the LEADER funding group to start the process. This was a partnered approach between ERC and EWCC that included raising additional funds to allow the park to be better equipped with a children’s adventure climbing area. Work commenced on the park in late 2018 and has continued at pace. The park MUGA and adventure climbing area were completed in April and are currently open for use. The pathways and final landscaping is ongoing, with completion expected to be late June/July 2018. The response and use of the park by local children has been phenomenal. It is fantastic to see families, young people and dog walkers all sharing this beautiful space and enjoying the outdoors. Inky Pink Park is becoming much more than just a MUGA and play area. EWCC invited Whitelee Countryside Rangers to visit the park and conduct an activities survey. As a result we are very pleased to inform you that they will now be incorporating the park into their programme and will be running events like, A Bugs Life, Bat Watch, Star Gazing, Water Fun and Muddy Marvellous to name a few. This is to allow our children to have more fun, take ownership of their new park and understand and respect the environment better through education led activities. The events will be advertising on their main site and on EWCC’s sites in due course.
As you will know the Gladman proposal for a new build estate was rejected because of local objections and the coordinated engagement with the Scottish Govts Reporter by EWCC and others. We have kept a close link with the ERC planning department particularly concerning the Land Development Plan 2 (LDP2) public consultation. LDP2 concerns the next phase of agreed building in ERC. This is yet to be agreed and a final public consultation on LDP2 will occur later this year. Planning will inform EWCC when this starts and we will update the community and represent your views as needed. EWCC hold a statutory position within planning matters in ERC.
The Police Scotland Local Problem Solving Team led by Sgt Morganthaler have been outstanding in their monthly attendance at our meetings and their support and advice in combating crime in our area. This has led directly to members of the community using EWCC’s social media sites to alert the community to suspicious behaviour and also an increase in residents calling 999/101 to report crime One such incident led to the arrest of a number of people who were committing offences in Eaglesham and Waterfoot. A local resident reported suspicious behaviour which led the police to deploy a helicopter, tracker dogs and several police cars. The result was the recovery of two stolen cars, stolen goods and the arrest of a number of suspects.
Local Bus Service.
EWCC have been supporting the local community with this matter since 2017. We have written several times to First Group requesting a meeting to discuss the poor service of the 4A route but to no avail. We then decided to run an online survey for members of the community to submit their complaints and any issues about the bus service. The poor service has lead to a local resident setting up a Carpool scheme on Face Book to help local residents get to and from work. The survey data was collated and delivered to SPT by one of our local councillors. The media also became interested because of the Carpool and poor feedback and an article below was published in the Daily Record on the 9th of May,
"Eaglesham and Community Council say locals have been forced to car pool in an effort to commute from the village. Now they have called for First Bus to listen to their complaints and act. A recent survey by the group showed 78 per cent of complaints received were due to the buses not turning up. The shocking figures have forced locals to come up with a carpool group, which connects those who don’t drive to major routes from rural roads. A spokesman for the group said: “The local community have consistently raised issues with bus services at our public meetings. So we were asked to investigate and raise awareness of their dissatisfaction with local bus services in our area. We currently have two main buses that travel through our area – the 4A and 395, with a few variants. Many locals use these buses and have noticed a decline in the quality of service, which led to us commissioning an online survey. Returning the figures, the spokesman said they are “concerning” and suggested only a small percentage of real time issues are actually being logged, meaning many bus failings are not being reported.The spokesman added that some residents who cannot drive have had to give up employment “due to the non-provision” of buses in the area. He added: “A local councillor recently met with SPT and submitted the online survey in the hope that improvements can be made. “We will continue to report concerns to the bus providers in the hope it will bring about a positive solution for our community. “We have asked on several occasions to meet with the senior management of First Group, who are the most complained about company in the survey, without success. “We hope they will listen to the concerns of the community and respond accordingly". Newton Mearns and Eaglesham South councillor Caroline Bamforth has called for a return to the service serving Polnoon Street, and says she has consulted with locals and politicians regarding the matter. That saw her raise issues with services with nearby councillor, Annette Ireland, and SPT representatives, where she passed on the data provided by EWCC. She said that SPT agreed to make inquiries with First Bus. Councillor Bamforth told the East Kilbride News: “Obviously this is of great concern to residents for whom this service is essential for travel to work or study, but also affects residents further along the route, in Councillor Ireland’s ward. “I also asked if First could look at reinstating the 4A bus up Polnoon street and am awaiting a response on both these issues from First, via SPT.” Along with Councillor Ireland, Councillor Bamforth has requested a face-to-face meeting with First. A spokesman from First Glasgow said: “We welcome feedback from customers and stakeholders about our service coverage all year round so that we can keep any suggestions about our network coverage under consideration for the future.”
ERC Roads Dept.
EWCC have worked very closely with ERC Roads department primarily on issues of safety. After a number of meetings with local residents and then engagement with ERC we were able to get the road markings on all local pedestrian crossings renewed and safety lighting assessed and upgraded where required. The local primary school also became a focal point with parents reporting parking concerns. EWCC engaged with the HT, ERC parking wardens and the police local problem solving team to come together to tackle the issues. EWCC also requested from the Roads Dept the most recent TACSIS speeding survey data. This revealed that in most areas motorists were speeding. Particularly in Waterfoot where 92% of 51000 vehicles in a 7 day period were travelling over the legal speed limit. With 125 local children using ERC school buses daily at this location and the toddlers park next to it. EWCC engaged with Police Scotland to request that their traffic dept deal with this serious issue. They have been deploying officers regularly at the survey hotspots in Eaglesham and Waterfoot. EWCC have also requested that ERC look at deploying speed camera vehicles around the area.
EWCC recently organised their first litter picking event in Waterfoot which was extremely well supported. We managed to clean up Inky Pink Park, Low Borland Way, Glasgow Rd verges from the underpass up to Linn Products, both bus stops and finishing with Brackenrig Woods. Thank you very much to all who came along and helped in achieving so much.
EWCC Health for Heroes Programme.
EWCC Chair approached Ian Pye at East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure Trust to ask for his support in starting the Health for Heroes Programme in ER. This is a gym membership and monthly breakfast to help support injured veterans in our community. ERCLT senior management supported by ERC have very kindly agreed to donate 40 platinum gym membership passes for injured veterans. Jane Duncan the Armed Forces advisor for ER, Inverclyde and Renfrewshire Councils has joined to help roll the programme out in ER. The hope is the programme can be brought to the other two council areas as well. The programme will include monthly veterans breakfasts at each leisure centre. The intent being that at the breakfasts a “one stop shop” of support organisations will be set up to offer help where needed.
Following on from this initial success other councils were contacted. Perth and Kinross Council have now signed up to the programme and are introducing it into their compass membership. Their partnering organisations will support where required at the veterans breakfasts. South Lanarkshire Council have also offered to donate 50 all access gym memberships to the programme. More councils are coming forward to support the programme. Suzuki GB PLC through a local resident have kindly offered £500 towards the Programme breakfasts. Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Public Involvement Manager recently contacted me to discuss the Health for Heroes Programme. Thanks must go to Councillor Bamforth for her support in raising awareness of the programme in ER and GGC. Many injured veterans and their families will benefit enormously from the programme.
The last twelve months have been extremely busy, productive and very satisfying for EWCC. May I take this opportunity to thank members of our local community for their support and regular attendance at our monthly meetings. Our two regularly attending local councillors, Caroline Bamforth and Jim McLean, their support and advice has been instrumental in the successes. Finally thank you to the hard working volunteers who make up the members of Eaglesham and Waterfoot Community Council. Ailsa Burns, Niall Rachman, Brian Lappin, Andy Tyson, Steven McMenamin, Duncan Macintyre and David Macaskill.