ISSUE 42 MARCH 2017
East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel Newsletter
ELTRP CELEBRATES ITS 18TH BIRTHDAY THIS YEAR! JOIN US IN THE FIRST OF THE CELEBRATIONS WITH A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE! ELTRP ANNUAL CONFERENCE 13TH MAY 2017
GUESS WHO? Can you guess who will be the guest speaker from this 1999 photo?
CELEBRATE WITH ELTRP! ELTRP ANNUAL CONFERENCE LOCAL GROUPS UPDATE EAST LOTHIAN COUNCIL RENT CONSULTATION
EAST COAST FM
MAPPING THE LOCAL GROUPS
TIS ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2017
AREA PARTNERSHIP UPDATE
SCRUTINY AT WORK
THE ELTRP WEBSITE â&#x20AC;&#x201C; OUR ONLINE HOME
WHAT IS SOCIAL MEDIA?
COMMENTS? COMPLIMENTS? COMPLAINTS? 27 CONTACT US
CELEBRATE WITH ELTRP! ELTRP was founded in 1999 which means that 2017 is the year we turn 18! And like anyone reaching the age of attainment we’re ready to celebrate. We’ve got lots of plans so here are a couple of dates for your diaries:
ELTRP Annual Conference “Memory Lane” – Saturday 13th May from 10.00am – 3.30pm We’re going to take a trip down memory lane and share all the highs and lows, successes and hurdles that ELTRP has encountered over the years. And we want the local groups to share their history too! When were you founded? When did you join ELTRP? What’s your favourite ELTRP memory/ what are your top tips for successful tenant participation?
Birthday Party! – Friday September 8th at 7pm Celebrate with us! Venue TBC but it’s going to be fancy!
Some memorable occasions To trigger those dusty memories, here are some key events in the life of ELTRP: In June 2001 funding from ELC and support from TIS allows ELTRP to appoint its first development worker, Claire MacGillivray based at the Brunton Hall In January 2002 the Tenant’s Panel officially becomes East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel, adopt a new constitution and elect a new committee. The 2002 Committee is made up of John Berrick (Chair), Dot Christie (Vice-Chair), Jeanette Boyd (Secretary), Janette Mackenzie (Treasurer) plus June McCroskey, Lennie Swinburne, Wattie Anderson and Josie Paterson On 7th November 2003 ELTRP moves into new premises in Haddington with the old Alliance and Leicester building on the High Street undergoing renovations. Cllr Willie Innes performed the opening ceremony In July 2005 Paul Laidlaw is appointed as Outreach Officer In December 2006 ELTRP moves into our new home at 47 Bridge Street, Musselburgh with an office warming held on 25th May 2007 In January 2009 The Resource Room opens for use with the Official Opening held on March 25th In June 2010 Patsy King takes over the role as Development Officer In 2016 Patsy is joined by the current team of Sue Cairns as Outreach Officer and Juliet Swann as Admin Officer.
WHAT DO YOU REMEMBER? 3
ELTRP ANNUAL CONFERENCE This year ELTRP are holding their Annual Conference on Saturday 13th May 2017 at the Pennypit Centre from 10.00am – 3.30pm. Tenants groups from all over the county will be taking a trip down memory lane. When did they get started? What have they achieved over time and most importantly what’s been happening in their local communities?
ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2017 10.00AM – 3.30PM 13TH MAY 2017 PENNYPIT COMMUNITY CENTRE Book your place now! Contact the ELTRP office T: 0131 665 9304 E: firstname.lastname@example.org or book online at www.eltrp.co.uk/conference
WHO ARE THESE THREE EC MEMBERS PICTURED IN 1999?
HELPING HANDS ARTICLE Two years on Wingate TRA are still running the ‘Helping Hand Scheme’ and it is going from strength to strength. This scheme was developed to support vulnerable people in the local area. There are currently 22 names signed up to this local innovative initiative in the Wingate area of Dunbar. A survey was carried out by the Wingate TRA before Christmas 2016 to gather feedback about the ‘Helping Hand Scheme’, whereby the whole community were supportive of this scheme continuing and growing. This is a voluntary initiative which is about neighbours caring about neighbours and not an alternative to emergency services of any kind. The aim of this initiative is to give people a way of alerting their neighbours if they need a helping hand. For example: while you wait for emergency services to arrive and/or if you require assistance to call emergency services. In the event that they just need some friendly assistance, a named person
from Wingate TRA can be contacted to request support. Anyone provided with a Helping Hand will also be provided with the contact details of the Wingate TRA named person. The Helping Hand must not under any circumstances be used as a convenience service to fetch and carry, and should only be used in times of genuine need and vulnerability due to power cuts or other circumstances. This is a very innovative and successful initiative created and developed by the Wingate TRA. Last year they were nominated and shortlisted for the Community Development Excellence Award at the TIS Conference in June in Glasgow - they were in the final three from across Scotland.
For more information please contact Wingate Tenants and Residents Association at email@example.com or on 07947 723579
BOLTON STEADING RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION Bolton Steading Residents Association is putting together a Resilience/Emergency Plan to distribute to all of their residents with advice and action plans to follow in case of bad severe weather or other emergencies. The village is understandably not a high priority for the council when it comes to things such as snow clearance so they decided they needed to be as self sufficient as they could. They did experience a couple of bad weather periods during the winters of 2010/2011 and although winters have been relatively good since then, they decided that they needed to be prepared in future rather than having to react to bad weather conditions when they occur. They have no shops, school or pub in the village and with a number of elderly living on their own, they wanted to ensure that everyone was safe and cared for. Their Community Council covers a large geographical area, so they believed it was relevant to have a plan that suited their local conditions. Bolton Steading group is a very pro-active group and works closely with the local residents to identify issues and resolve them.
For more information please contact Paul on firstname.lastname@example.org
BRUNTON COURT TENANTS GROUP Brunton Court Tenants Groups have a core, active and engaged group of tenants. They have had a great year with many activities and actions taken forward from the tenants of the complex. They held their AGM in September of last year with Pat MacRae being re-elected as Chair. Pat attended the Local Housing Partnership meeting in March, where they secured funding for the parking bays in front of the building to be widened for easier access for the tenants and visitors. They held their Christmas Party in December which was a great success with other activities and events being organised for 2017. They have had their ups and downs since then, however the group is strong and there have been some changes within their Committee.
For more information please contact ELTRP on 0131 665 9304 6
COCKENZIE WEST TENANTS AND RESIDENTS GROUP Cockenzie West held their AGM on 26th January 2017. They have a strong core group of people, with one new member joining at the AGM. Since the group started in 2013 they have been involved in improving their area a great deal. Here are a few things they have been involved in: The Play Park was upgraded and extended with monies received from ELC Housing Partnership and from the developers building the houses adjacent to Avenue Road at a total cost of £44,000.00. Scottish Power and ELC agreed to cut the grass at the football field after Scottish Power refused to allow it to be upgraded for a sum of £6000.00 allocated from the Area Partnership. Pavements have been repaired and kerbs lowered and the edges of the middle row in Whin Park were tarred to level the road and keep the kerb stones in place. Hawthorn Terrace pavement was repaired to fix dangerous cracks. All the drains were repaired and flushed out. The 20’s plenty trial period was introduced, and the speed of vehicles was measured. The “Fun Day” at the play park to celebrate the Queen’s 90 birthday, was enjoyed by all.
Cockenzie West TRA 7
Working with the Area Partnership, lighting has been installed at the Memorial Gardens. The broken wall in Hawthorn Terrace Lane has been put as a priority on the Area Partnership plan and money has been approved pending contractors submitting an acceptable tender. Cockenzie West are now looking towards the future and would like to explore options with a focus on improvements at Cockenzie Harbour including: » » » » » » » » »
Tidy up and landscape the area between the harbour and Royal British Legion Install a railing at the end of the breakwater Paint railings and bollards Install navigation lights at harbour entrance Improve access to beach Tidy up West Links Remove broken sewage pipe Install toilets at the Harbour Explore the feasibility of having a Beach Wheelchair for use at Seton Sands
Cockenzie West group are always looking for new members of the community to get involved, so if you are interested in finding out more please contact Larry on email@example.com
DUNBAR SHORE AND HARBOUR Membership for 2016/17 stands at 65 and has remained constant with some leavers and some joiners. Meetings started with the AGM in February and we met every month until June. After a summer break, meetings were held from September to November. All were open meetings and all were generally attended by no fewer than 8 people and generally no more than 15. We remain grateful to Dunbar Methodist Church for continuing to allow us to use their hall. Live projects are managed out with meetings and for 2016, these are some examples:
CREEL LOADERS Statue, garden, paving and interpretation panel The team successfully delivered The Creel Loaders statue in September and are now working on the delivery of an interpretation panel for which funding has been granted by ELC. The panel is expected to be in place by Easter 2017. 8
VICTORIA STREET HISTORY HUB Interpretation panels, paving and seats Kenny has led this project from the outset. 11 panels telling the story of Victoria St will be installed in February. It is hoped that paving works, incorporating Rita Bradd’s Herrin’ Road poem, will be complete by the summer.
EAST BEACH REGENERATION Coastal defences and beach improvements The team has determined a trial in an attempt to encourage self regeneration of the East Beach. Infrastructure to be constructed before 2018 will include a new ‘bio’ groyne and defence mattressing to the sewage interception pipe. In addition to the above, DSHNG members… » » » » » » » »
joined with RNLI day (helping Mike Shaw to run the very successful Tombola Stall) walked the walk for Civic Week represented DSHNG at CAPP meetings (Mike Shaw) represented TRAs on Area Partnership board made representation in respect of development at Coastguard site made representations in respect of development at 1 Shore Street kept East Beach Facebook and DSHNG website live (thanks to Sue Guy) kept East Beach noticeboard refreshed (thanks to Alasdair Swan)
My sincere thanks go to all project teams and to the wider membership for your support – Pippa Swan, Chair
For more information please contact Pippa Swan on firstname.lastname@example.org
HADDINGTON EAST TENANTS AND RESIDENTS GROUP (HETRA) The Haddington East group has been going for some time now and it is nearly one year since Ron Goldie and Alan Dunton took over as sharing the Chair role. During this time the group have been involved in Estate Inspections, the development of the Skate Park and addressing other community issues that have arisen for example, flooding, roads and lighting. HETRA held their AGM in February and Alan Dunton is the new Chairperson, with Ron Goldie as Secretary, Brian Baillie as Vice Chair and Greg Chandler as Treasurer. The Committee are strong and determined to encourage other members of the community to become involved. Ron Goldie has played a lead role in creating a sub group to explore options of developing a Mental Health Peer Support group in the Haddington area. Haddington East Tenants and Residents Association (HETRA) identified a gap in provision in Haddington (and across East Lothian) for a drop in resource for people experiencing or having experienced mental health issues. They created a sub group to explore this further and after talking to many people including Stuart Gibb, Area Partnership Manager, East Lothian Council, MSPs, and the local community the group decided to 10
take some action. The end goal was to create a resource whereby they would have a building of their own to offer a peer support drop in service, various group work opportunities including cooking, arts, drama, gardening and so on, even creating their own social enterprise. However they were very well aware that this is a very long arduous process and they needed a starting point to evidence the need in service. The group decided to start a pilot 8-10 week drop in group in Haddington using cooking as a tool for people to engage. Working closely with Charli Prime, Deputy Head Teacher, Knox Academy, Meadowpark they were able to acquire an excellent venue for the
pilot project and Charli Prime has been exceedingly supportive to the group.
innovative project in April after training and planning have been completed.
HETRA successfully acquired funds from the Area Partnership for the pilot project and after receiving a slight set back, they are now working in partnership with Changes Community Health Project who will offer support and training for the Volunteers involved; the group envisage starting this
HETRA would like to thank everyone for their valued support during this past year.
For more information please contact Ron Goldie at ron. email@example.com
LIME GROVE TENANTS AND RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION Lime Grove held their AGM in January, which was very well attended. It included an active discussion about the future of the former Rhodes Council Depot site. This site adjoins Lime Grove and may be the subject of an asset transfer request by the local community. More discussions to take place........ The group are also gathering feedback about the handling of the recent interruption to their gas supply.
For more information please contact Tim Harding on Tim.firstname.lastname@example.org
MONKSMUIR COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION The residents of Monksmuir are happy to report that after months of feverish activity they are finally connected to Mains Gas and can start to reap the benefits of paying much less for fuel especially during the winter period. Our elderly residents no longer have to rely on bottled gas each week to heat their homes and have peace of mind knowing they can spread the cost and payments over the year without causing unnecessary hardship. This change added to the improvements we have made to the park over the last 2 years such as regular bin collections, a post box and lights at the two bus stops means that our residents now have basic amenities that are maybe taken for granted by us all living towns and villages.
For more information please contact Jim Herron at email@example.com 11
TWTRA Tranent West Tenants and Residents Association have continuously campaigned on local issues, pushing for actions and solutions and working in partnership with East Lothian Council and other local agencies. Currently TWTRA are campaigning fiercely to improve the parking issues along the Elphinstone Road /John Crescent/ Caponhall and raise the awareness of the negative impact these issues have on the local community. They are working closely with the local community, East Lothian Council and ELTRP to find a solution to the various issues raised. TWTRA are also involved in campaigning to change New Row to a one way system to help reduce the parking issues and congestion issues on this road, which may have a positive knock on effect on the Elphinstone Road. As always TWTRA are involved in the local Estate Inspections, influencing local Police at the regular CAPP meetings and attending the local Housing Partnership and Area Partnership meetings.
WINDSOR PARK Windsor Park are always involved in the local Estate Inspections and at the last inspection of the area it was agreed that the wire fence between Linkfield Road and Windsor Park would be lowered and we are pleased to report this has been carried out. It was also agreed that there would be an extensive cut back and tidy up of all the shrubberies and grass throughout the area and this is work in progress. Over the past two years members of the WPTRA have been representatives on the Musselburgh Area Partnership and have been working hard with other members to set out a programme of projects which cover many areas and improve services for all. Some of the projects already up and running involve: Reading is Braw â&#x20AC;&#x201C; encouraging children and adults to read more. There are numerous book stalls throughout Musselburgh in the schools, library, Community Centres, Brunton Hall; over the next few months there will be reading stations popping up throughout the town. There are also plans afoot to improve Cycle Paths throughout Musselburgh and the environment in general.
For more information please contact Cathie McArthur or Jeanette Boyd on 0131 665 1293 12
OLDCRAIGHALL RTA Old Craighall RTA is the oldest RTA in East Lothian. It was reformed after many dormant years in 2014. It was reformed initially to respond to the proposed development of over 50 houses on shrub land within Old Craighall. The residents rallied to stop the development and initially succeeded as the development was refused planning permission by the planning committee of East Lothian Council, however, our success was overturned by the Scottish Ministers on appeal by the developer. Now a new developer has put in for planning permission, this time with less housing, so again the residents got together to put forward objections to the plans. What this showed was that people power does indeed count, through our combined efforts from many residents we did get recognition from the council and indeed continue to do so as we work in partnership (and with other bodies) to continue improving our little part of the county.
PLAY PARK PAINTING Through working with East Lothian Council the RTA were able to acquire paints and materials to enable a refresh of the paint work in the play park.
PLAY PARK UPGRADE Old Craighall has recently been given a small upgrade to the play park. We were approached by East Lothian Council and asked what two pieces of play park equipment we would like to see added to the park and the local kids chose a set of new other kidsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; swings and a small roundabout.
Oldcraighall play park
New Equipment 13
BEACH LANE TRA Beach Lane TRA had their first meeting on the 16th February at the Brunton Hall which was really successful. The group met again on the 2nd March; elected a Committee, identified specific issues and created an action plan.
For more information please contact ELTRP.
WALLYFORD An Open Evening was held at Wallyford Community Centre on 31st January this year which was really successful. Sue Cairns, ELTRP worked in partnership with Pamela Martin, Community Learning and Development along with Stuart Baxter, Musselburgh Area Partnership and representatives from two local Tenants and Residents Groups â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Windsor Park and Oldcraighall Residents and Tenants Association to promote Tenant Participation and display the positive community work going on in the areas, working with East Lothian Council in improving housing and environmental services. They joined Committee members of the East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel to offer a space for members of the local community to find out more about ELTRP and how to start a group of their own. It was a very positive evening with an excellent turnout from the local community some of whom are interested in working with Sue Cairns, Outreach Officer to set up TRA group in Wallyford. A meeting will take place after the Easter holiday on 19th April at 6.30pm â&#x20AC;&#x201C; contact Sue for details. Thanks also to the staff of Wallyford Community Centre for their support in hosting the event.
For more information please contact Sue Cairns at ELTRP.
Open Night 14
WHITECRAIG An Open Evening took place on 8th February 2017 at Whitecraig Community Centre. Working in partnership with Diann Govenlock, Community Learning and Development, Stuart Baxter, Musselburgh Area Partnership, Representatives from Windsor Park Tenants’ and Residents Association and with the committee of East Lothian Tenants’ and Residents’ Panel to promote Tenant Participation and display the positive community work going on in the areas and working with East Lothian Council in improving housing and environmental services in order to encourage the Whitecraig Community to set up and Tenants’ and Residents’ Association in their area. Some members of the community came along to find out more; however, we will run another similar event at the Portacabin in Whitecraig in early spring.
For more information please contact Sue Cairns at ELTRP...
GOSPATRICK, DUNBAR A new residents group started in Gospatrick, Dunbar last year to address the issues that have arisen since this new housing development. They are in the process of creating a constitution in order to formalise the group and identify and prioritise any issues that arise.
For more information please contact Sue Cairns at ELTRP...
ANDREW MEIKLE GROVE Andrew Meikle Grove is a new group in East Linton. They are also in the process of agreeing a constitution in order to formalise their group and again, identify and prioritise any issues that arise.
For more information please contact Sue Cairns at ELTRP...
GENERAL All of the Tenants and Residents Groups in East Lothian are volunteers and work extremely hard to promote community participation and get as many people involved as possible. All of these TRAs would be happy for more people to become involved and there are spaces for people to take on specific roles such as Secretary, Vice Chair and even the role of Chair in some areas, as well as general committee members. 15
ELTRP offer various training sessions including Minute Taking, the various roles and responsibilities of running a group, How can TRAs influence Local Housing Partnerships and Area Partnerships? Tenant Scrutiny, Scottish Social Housing Charter, How to develop an Action Plan, Group Dynamics and much, much more.......... So we are always there to support you... We are also aware that some areas in East Lothian are not represented with a Tenants and Residents group and if anyone wishes to explore this further Sue Cairns, Outreach Officer at ELTRP is more than happy to support new groups in any way she can.
For more information about any of the groups or generally please call Sue Cairns, Outreach Officer on 0131 665 9304.
EAST LOTHIAN COUNCIL RENT CONSULTATION East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel made a written response to the consultation after holding a consultation event in November 2016 to inform ELC tenants and gather views regarding the potential rent increase. ELTRP reported that the majority of the 29 delegates attending the event: » were happy with the information received through the rent consultation process » thought the rent they paid was good value for money » did not think 5% was a fair increase. Those tenants who thought it unfair were concerned that the increase was not in line with inflation and pensions » believed in building new affordable housing of all tenures, the majority thought it important to bring forward more council houses in particular » all tenants thought investment in current stock was important » tenants would prefer the payment method of rent to stay the same now and in the future. A number of suggestions were made for future improvements to the consultation process and these will be considered and worked through with the Project Group who plan and agree the consultation approach each year. The Group will also consider the recent guidance produced by the Scottish Housing Regulator in respect of how social landlords consult tenants about rent increases. 16
East Lothian Council also sent out questionnaires to every tenant to gather their views and the results were as follows: » 93% of those who responded were happy with the level of consultation and information they get about the annual rent increase » 91% said that they think the rent they pay is good value for money » 77% said they think the Council are proposing a fair increase of 5% » 93% agree with the Council’s commitment to build new houses to help address the housing shortage in East Lothian » 98% agree that the Council should continue to modernise its existing stock (e.g. new kitchens/bathrooms/rewiring/improving energy efficiency)
Rent Consultation 17
AREA PARTNERSHIP UPDATE Following on from our September issue – this is an update of the Area Partnership covering East Lothian.....
AREA PARTNERSHIP STRUCTURE In 2014 six Area Partnerships were set up across East Lothian as the ‘local voice’ of East Lothian Partnership. These are the areas with the current active Tenants and Residents groups:
Dunbar and East Linton Area:
» Elphinstone Community Association
» Dunbar Shore and Harbour
» Muirpark Steading View TRA
» James Court TRA
» Ormiston West TRA
» Monksmuir Community Association
» Tranent West TRA
» Wingate TRA
» Andrew Meikle Grove, East Linton
» Brunton Court Tenants Group
» Gospatrick Residents Group, Dunbar
» Goose Green TRA » Oldcraighall RTA » Windsor Park TRA » Wallyford TRA (tbc) » Beach Lane TRA (tbc)
Preston Seton Gosford Area » Cockenzie West TRA
Haddington and Lammermuir Area: » Bolton Steading TA » Haddington East TRA
North Berwick Area: » Law Residents Group » Lime Grove TRA
Area Partnerships aim to strengthen links between communities, area-based services and East Lothian Partnership. They aim to be an opportunity for people within these local communities to contribute to the decision making process and have their voices heard to make a real, positive difference in their everyday lives. Area Partnerships main responsibility is to develop a strategic-level Area Plan, linked to the priorities in the East Lothian Plan, which includes Tenant Participation and the new Tenant Participant Strategy which was launched at the ELTRP Annual Conference on the 14th September 2016. At the ELTRP AGM in November it was agreed that an election process would take place to nominate Tenants and Residents Associations Representatives and Substitutes for the Area Partnership meetings. The first election process for this to take place will be at the ELTRP AGM in November 2017.
Subsequently, part of my role as Outreach Officer will be to identify and organise the appropriate training in conjunction with the current groups in East Lothian. However, the Community Learning and Development Training Programme offered general Area Partnership training sessions for all the community. It has been agreed that 2 x meetings per annum will take place for all East Lothian Area Partnership representatives to share and discuss experiences. I think it is important to highlight that all these meetings are attended by the reps and subs on a voluntary basis and I would like to thank you all for the time and energy you put into these meetings, and the ideas and creativity to find a beneficial way forward for everyone.
Sue Cairns – Outreach Officer
SCRUTINY AT WORK ELTRP recently took part in very different scrutiny activity and it proved to be very interesting. The volunteer observed the housing officer during the sign up interview when tenants receive their keys for their new house; they interview the tenant and housing officer afterwards to find out what they thought of the whole process. The volunteers also looked at the pack the tenant is given to take away. The results will be revealed shortly!
If you would like some more information about tenant scrutiny or are interested in getting involved then please get in touch with Deborah Piner on 01620 827 526, email firstname.lastname@example.org or Patsy King in the ELTRP Office.
CHRISTMAS NIGHT As a member of a tenants and residents group I was lucky enough to be invited to the Christmas dinner which was held at the Maitlandfield House Hotel in Haddington. The night started out with a glass of bubbly then it was into the dining room for a three course meal. After the meal Santa arrived and gave everyone a gift. Then to top it off some of the Executive Committee put on their idea of Cinderella. I haven’t laughed as much in a long time and I’m hoping that this year is just as good!
Mary Bonnar - James Court TRA
THE ELTRP WEBSITE – OUR ONLINE HOME As its ELTRP’s 18th birthday this year (check out the article about our planned celebrations) I’ve been looking back through the archives to plot ELTRPs journey from 1999 to 2017. So I can tell you that it was way back in 2006 that the Panel first discussed going online with an ELTRP website and it finally went ‘live’ in 2011. It seems fitting therefore that in advance of our birthday, we gave the website a bit of a revamp. We’ve stayed at the same address, but like any good landlord, we’ve decorated, installed some new fixtures and fittings and we’ve made it easier to maintain. And every local group has its own page – your own room in our online home. So, now we’ve got this lovely new internet home, we need you to help us furnish and decorate your rooms. It’s up to you what your page looks like – you can send us a logo, photos of your area, your group or your pets. If you have a newsletter we can share that on your webpage. We can also update your meeting schedule, and if there are other local events you want to share we can include those too. We’ve also included lots of information about ELTRP, the staff, the EC and you can see what consultations are open and read the latest Panel News. As you will know, every home needs TLC and to be kept clean and tidy if it’s to be welcoming and not fall into disrepair. So show the website some love, have a look around the rooms, and send us your ideas so as we can make it an inviting and engaging place to visit.
Juliet Swann, Admin Officer
EAST COAST FM Over the past year ELTRP have had a monthly slot on East Coast FM our local radio station, usually the first Monday of the month at 10.30am. This has been a fun and productive year, with many subjects covered and events shared from TRA groups around East Lothian. Some of the stories were that Elphinstone Community Association had a traffic survey showing 85% of traffic faster than 30MPH through the village. Also, Wingate TRA Dunbar hosted an indoor bowling tournament, and launched their helping hands project which is a great idea. We shared that the council rent arrears team set up a direct phone number making it easier for people to get through and that the council are now offering low house contents insurance that can be added on to the rent - don’t get caught without! In October, we had a phone-in on universal credit - East Lothian being the first area in Scotland to implement this scheme. We had a great response from the public, phone calls and letters, with many finding UC hard to understand so we hope we helped. We also followed the progress of 5 young men doing a charity run from Cramond to Alnmouth, a distance of 130 miles - all for Macmillan Cancer Support. They raised £1800, so well done to Neil, Gary, Eddie, Pete and the council’s own James Coutts. All in all, we have highlighted many things over the year including many open days held throughout the year by TRA groups - too many to name! So well done to all the TRA groups for their hard work throughout the year and to the Executive Committee. We’re looking forward to the coming year on East Coast FM. To all the groups let us know if you have anything you want to go out over the air! Also this year ELTRP celebrates our 18th birthday and we have some special events planned - so listen to East Coast FM, as the events will go out on the community news, as well as our own slot. To whet your appetite, the themes will be: This is your life theme, (then till now), Memory Lane, 18th birthday party and looking to the future.
Mark Ormiston – Chair, ELTRP
MAPPING THE LOCAL GROUPS
TIS ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2017: ‘HEALTH, WEALTH, AND HOUSING’ FRIDAY 9 – SUNDAY 11 JUNE, WESTERWOOD HOTEL & RESORT, GLASGOW The Tenants Information Service (TIS) Annual Conference is back in 2017 and now accepting bookings! Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and join TIS, together within tenants and housing & participation professionals from across the country at the Westerwood Hotel and Resort for the TIS Annual Conference 2017: ‘Health, Wealth, and Housing’.
From Friday 9 June – Sunday 11 June, this hugely inspiring, 3 day event, can boast an array of meaningful workshops, interesting study tours, ample networking opportunities, and an excellent line up of speakers. Greatly anticipated highlights of the event programme include a Ministerial Address from Housing Minister, Kevin Stewart MSP, and motivational
“Once again TIS have raised the bar! A fantastic conference which was very well run. I’m already looking forward to next year.” John Bell, Fife Housing Scrutiny Group 24
session from Social Bite founder, Josh Littlejohn, as they manifest the weekend’s theme of ‘Health, Wealth, and Housing’. The TIS National Excellence Awards 2017 will also take centre stage as
landlords, tenants, residents, and community groups are recognised and honoured for demonstrating a commitment to making a difference within the Scottish social housing sector as part of the Gala Dinner evening.
“As a housing service professional, I found the TIS conference an invaluable networking opportunity as well as being able to gain new skills, experience and friends.” Mark Cooper, Dundee City Counci Working with tenants and landlords to make a difference
Limited spaces available!
Communities: Health, Wealth & Housing TIS Annual Conference 2017 Book your place now
Friday 9th June - Sunday 11th June
“The conference was excellent – I really enjoyed everything.”
Westerwood Hotel & Resort, Glasgow www.tis.org.uk
Sharon Wallace, Cunninghame Housing Association
Book your place to experience a fantastic, feel good, weekend. Call the TIS office on 0141 248 1242, email email@example.com or visit the TIS website at www.tis.org.uk for workshop and speaker updates. 25
WHAT IS SOCIAL MEDIA? Noun “websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking” Essentially, social media are internet based groups that connect people with shared interests. With the advent of smart phone apps that mean people can access these networking sites on their phones, tools like facebook, twitter and others have become increasingly useful for businesses and campaigners as well as a way for folk to stay in touch with their friends or things that interest them. It’s like meeting up with folk and seeing how they are, and what they think of events, but without going anywhere and with being able to reach people far away as well as next door. Which means even ELTRP has embraced social media. It’s a quick and efficient way to make contact with hundreds of people – both local residents in East Lothian and people further afield who might be interested in what we are doing. On facebook we list all the events ELTRP is involved with – and also the local group meetings (when we know about them!) and on twitter we send regular updates about the daily activities of the staff and members of the EC.
www.facebook.com/EastLothianTRP www.twitter.com/EastLothianTRP Lots of East Lothian councillors follow our twitter updates so they’re seeing how busy the panel is and know that we’re paying attention to what they’re doing too! Where you come in: What makes a facebook or twitter account interesting is content. Pictures are especially good. You can also ask people what they think about a local issue – and potentially reach new members for groups. So if you have something to share with the world let the ELTRP office know! Or start your own twitter or facebook page and follow our tweets and posts.
If you’d like training on setting up social media profiles, or how to create engaging content, get in touch with the ELTRP office. 26
Forthcoming Events: ELTRP Annual Conference DATE:
Saturday 13th May 2017
VENUE: Pennypit Community Centre, Prestonpans TIME:
10.00am â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 3.30pm
Please book for any of the above events by contacting the ELTRP Office on 0131 665 9304, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by texting 0758 447 4934 and someone will call you back or by visiting the website on www.eltrp.co.uk Remember that assistance with transport and childcare is available on request. The Panel News is available online on our website www.eltrp.co.uk
Copy Dates If you would like to contribute to the next edition of the Panel News please do so by contacting ELTRP office on 0131 665 9304.
Comments? Compliments? Complaints?
The copy deadline for the next issue is 31st October 2016
The Panel News is produced quarterly by the ELTRP Publicity Sub-Group. If you have any comments to make about this newsletter, please address them to the Publicity Sub Group at the ELTRP Office.
The views expressed in this newsletter are not necessarily those of East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel.
Help us to keep tenants and residents informed. Become a member of the Publicity Sub Group, or send us articles, comments or letters. Contact the Panel office to find out more. 27
can provide council information in user friendly versions in other formats, for example: Braille | Large Print | Audio Tape We can also provide signers and interpreters for council business. Phone 01620 827199 for more information.
East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel 28
47 Bridge Street Musselburgh EH21 6AA t. 0131 665 9304 e. email@example.com w. www.eltrp.co.uk @EastLothianTRP @EastLothianTRP