MEETING HELD AT 7:30PM ON TUESDAY 20th MARCH 2018
IN THE KIRKCOLM VILLAGE HALL
PRESENT: – Susan Irons (KCC), Barry Miller (KCC), Willie Scobie (Councillor), Ronnie Boyce (Police Scotland), Bobby McKie (Bowling Club), Eric Garrett (KCC), Catherine Downie (KCC), Joss Drummond (Parent Council), Sara McCulloch (KCC), Ros Surtees (Councillor), Thomas Cochrane (KCC)
APOLOGIES: – Gail Adams (KCC)
PC Ronnie Boyce told the meeting he had investigated the maximum speed for a tractor and it is 25mph. It is the same for a tractor and trailer as well. He also reported that the max combined weight of a tractor and trailer is 31 tonnes. He reported he had visited the village numerous times due to the reports at the last meeting of the parking on the double yellow lines in front of 1-5 Main Street. He said the police will only deal with a report of this if phoned at the time it is happening or if it is causing an obstruction. Finally, he asked the public to look out for bogus workers as there have been numerous reports of work never being completed by so called workmen.
MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS (27/02/2018)
- Speed check initiative – Bobby McKie is interested in taking part in the training for this. Deciding on this was deferred to a future meeting.
- Core path project – Eric Garrett reported to the meeting that he has found plastic matting that is 0.5 metre long by 0.5 metre wide which will be filled with hardcore. The part of the path where this matting is to be used is 600m long and will need 1,200 pieces which will cost £4200. Eric will ask Jack Milroy if it would be possible to store the matting at Kirranrae. Barry Miller moved the KCC go ahead with this purchase of plastic matting for the core path. This was agreed by all. Barry Miller thanked Eric Garrett for his hard work.
- Outstanding Community Benefit funding matters – Susan Irons is to contact the Knit and Natter group and ask for a list of stuff they need bought and Catherine Downie has volunteered to collect it for them on behalf of the KCC. Creating rules for applying for community benefit funding from the KCC was discussed and it was decided to put it back on the agenda soon, Sara McCulloch moved that a notice be sent out to groups for applications for North Rhin’s windfarm funding to be looked at in the May meeting. This was agreed by all.
- Torch project – Bobby McKie had a message from one lady saying torches are brilliant. The rest of the torches will be given out and if more are needed they will be bought,
- Asset transfer (Hall/car park) – Village halls across the local authority are having their funding withdrawn as of 31st March 2019 and the hall will be closing. There will be a public meeting jointly hosted by D&G Council and KCC held in the hall on Tuesday 27th March 2018 at 7pm for the community to discuss this matter and decide whether they wish to take control of the hall. Barry Miller has written a paper detailing how the hall can be run by a hall management committee. This would be run with a two-tier trust in which everyone in the community would be a member and then there would be 20 elected members on the committee. The paper talks about changing the hall into an open community centre. Barry Miller told the meeting that the leasing scheme is not the way to cut costs as D&G Council do not have the money to spend on halls anyway. He also said he has contacted Glenapp windfarm who said they are happy for the KCC to use their windfarm payment to support the hall. The paper Kirkcolm Village Hall – a Community Response and also the motion to be put to the public meeting scheduled for March 27th ‘A Kirkcolm Hall Management Group be established with the purpose of entering into an asset transfer agreement with Dumfries and Galloway Council to take over the title to Kirkcolm Public Hall and the adjacent car park. The group will then manage both facilities and where necessary be funded through Kirkcolm Community Benefit Funding.’ were both accepted as policy by the KCC and form part of this minute (appendix 1).
- Wig Bay slipway – Joss Drummond informed the meeting that the Sailing Club had been asked to take over the slipway and hopefully this will be happening, and the Sailing Club will be staying at Wig Bay. If anyone wishes to use the slipway they can ask the Sailing Club.
- Gala Day 2018 – The date for this years Gala day was agreed as Saturday 16th June 2018. Willie Scobie suggested the Community action group be asked to set up and take down the marquees for Gala day to take some of the strain from the KCC. The person to contact is Jackie Rae. It was agreed by all to go ahead and book the community action group to help with the marquees. A Gala sub committee meeting will be held on Thursday 26th April 2018 at 7pm in the hall. Susan Irons is to put up a poster to advertise for members for the Gala subcommittee and email groups that have stalls at the Gala to ensure their attendance at the subcommittee meeting.
- Easter Egg hunt – Sara McCulloch, Gail Adams and Wilma McKeown are now going to be running the Easter egg hunt. The KCC agreed to fund the 60 Easter eggs that were needed for this event.
ANY OTHER MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTE OF 27/02/18
Ian Moral had asked if the KCC could consider their position on supporting the Dual the A75 group as decided on at the previous meeting. This was put to the members, but they did not wish to change their decision as members will support it individually if they wish to do so.
The balance of the KCC bank account on 27th February 2018 was £32,450.93. (Appendix 2)
The KCC have received a thank you card from the Senior Citizens Welfare Committee thanking them for their payment of windfarm money towards the senior citizens Christmas dinner and presents.
Jack Milroy had asked for a lend of a marquee on behalf of someone else. This was agreed by all but a donation should be given to the KCC. Willie Scobie had previously informed the KCC that the Community Reuse shop had a pool table and ping pong table in stock in brilliant condition. It was agreed by all to buy these for the village hall. Bobby McKie brought up the need for laybys on the Kirminnoch road which had been discussed in the past at a previous meeting. He said the need was even greater now and Councillor Ros Surtees said she would investigate this matter.
DATE OF NEXT MEETING
The next meeting is the AGM and will be held on Tuesday 24th April at 7.30pm in the village hall.
Kirkcolm Public Hall
Tuesday 27th March, 7.00pm
Kirkcolm Village Hall – A Community Response
The village Hall situated on the corner of Church Road and Main Street is at the heart of both the village and the parish and also that of the community of Kirkcolm.
Built in the 1930s the hall has been an integral part of the lives of generations of Kirkcolm folk so much so that it is scarcely even noticed and is most certainly taken for granted.
Although not actually listed as such, the hall itself is of a singularly attractive art deco design and is certainly among the very best of the village halls in the former county of Wigtown. It boasts a curtained stage with rear access and side entries; a gallery with disabled lift access, a spacious hall area itself with outstandingly good acoustics. It is equipped with a large pull down screen and digital projection devices and could stage both film shows and presentations. There are well appointed gents, ladies and disabled facilities which currently function as public toilets. There is a very adequate kitchen area and an attractive, well furnished and comfortable meeting room, the supper room, upstairs. It has good access and is adjacent to a large public parking area as well as to the village shop and the Blue Peter public house. Although some modernisation such as double or secondary glazing and better insulation would be desirable, as would the sorting of the guttering and paintwork, the fabric of the building, including the roof and the sash and case windows, is in pretty good condition.
The Hall will permanently close on March 31st 2019 as a result of a Council decision to remove funding from 2019.
- The Community is in an excellent position to prevent this.
- Under the Dumfries and Galloway Council asset transfer scheme the community could take over the title and the running and future development of the Hall and the adjacent car park.
- Currently the Hall runs with and annual deficit of £6-£8K. It is now little used and is locked much of the time.
- Fortuitously the Community Council has recently entered into a 25 year contractual agreement with Scottish Power (the proprietors of Glen App Wind farm) which will result in an annual guaranteed income of £27.5K. In addition the CC has an income from the North Rhins wind farm of around £5K annually (variable) and £500 annually from the Local Authority. Other funding sources are currently being actively perused by the CC and are likely to come on stream in the future.
The above £32.5K is ‘Community Benefit’ funding – for the express and sole purpose of funding, fostering and encouraging community activity and engagement.
What possible better use could be made of part of that funding than to take over and organise the hall as an open community centre for those who live in the Village and wider parish?
With reasonable funding the Hall could be open all of the time. Lunch clubs, television lounges, internet access, smoking lounges (without of course smoking!), pool, table tennis or even snooker tables and play areas could be provided – the list is only limited by our own imagination. A variety of services could use our hall including e.g. hairdressers, chiropodists, health visitors, counselling services etc. Instead of people sitting alone at home there could be an open warm comfortable and welcoming facility for old and young alike to come and spend time with their friends. Existing clubs and groups would be fostered and encouraged. Far from closing, the hall now has the very real prospect of going through a full renaissance with the prospect of emerging better, stronger and more secure and certainly more used that it has been for a very long time.
The central proposal in the paper is for a Hall Management Group to be established and for the Community Council to make available a guaranteed annual sum from the community benefit fund for the project.
With funding a hall manager could be appointed whose function would be to manage both building related aspects of the project as well as the community aspects. The hall manager would be directly employed and answerable to the Hall Management Group. The future of both the Hall itself and that of the wider community could be greatly improved if the correct person was in place with the manager and management group working in partnership with the community.
In addition to the Hall the adjacent car Park could be included in the asset transfer and be developed in any way which is seen appropriate by the Committee. My own view is a large part ought to be retained as a car park however I also see scope for other ventures, such as a play park, in what is a large area in the centre of the village.
This paper does not include a business proposal. Letting figures have been examined and are somewhat disappointing and is likely income from this source could increased. Building related, administrative and staff related costs have also been looked at – it is likely these could be reduced. In short with imagination it is almost certainly the case the annual deficit could be reduced. In spite of this statement a guarantee secured from the Community Council Community for benefit funding is the key to the success of this project and the transformation of the Hall into an active and open community centre for Kirkcolm really depends on that.
PS Several years ago we did come together as an independent community group and were not only able to work with Scottish Power to upgrade all of the grid infrastructure in the surrounding area giving us secure power ever since but we also secured a substantial one-off payment for every household in the whole of the parish – an example of what can be achieved when we work together – we need to do this again!
At the time of writing this paper Kirkcolm Community Council did not have a position on the Hall closure. My own feeling is that this meeting will be our only chance to save the hall and that unless the meeting is well supported and makes a clear decision we will lose our hall and not only all of the activities that currently take place there but a massive opportunity to improve things for all sectors of the community. For that reason I urge you to attend the meeting. If you do not, effectively you are saying you don’t care and hope others will do it for you.
We are in a unique set of circumstances. We have the money (£32.5K annual income), the D&G policy on asset transfer is available but could change any time, and we have the plans to make it all work – it is surely a ‘no brainer’ – all we need is the community to come together.
If we don’t take action when we have the means how will we be able to justify our inaction to those who follow!?