Monimail Community Council : Minutes of meeting, 13th December 2010 1.
A. Arbuckle, W. Fenton; B. Forrest; J. Gordon; A. Grant; D. Hamilton; G. MacLean; K. MacLean; T. Morton; J. Rotheram; G. Smith; N. Stoddart; J. Vaughan
L. Barron; D. Dallas; L. Harvie; H. Laidlaw; P. Laidlaw
David Hamilton welcomed everyone to his first meeting as Chair. Hazel Grant stood down from the Community Council at the last election and thanks for her input in the past were offered. Thanks were also given to Juliet Gordon for the tremendous job as previous Chair. Neil Stoddart and Tom Morton were welcomed as the new members to the CC and David also pointed out that the remaining office bearers were as before. 3.
Minutes of Previous Meeting : accepted with a couple of points – - Item 5 : PVC-u doors should also be included (not just windows) - Item 14 : in future can we include surnames in minutes as not everyone knows who people are There had been a short meeting to elect office bearers and “minute availability” was discussed. It has been agreed that the minutes of the CC meeting will be available online (www.letham.org.uk) within a week of the meeting taking place. Copies will also placed on the notice boards in Letham, the Village Hall and also at Bow of Fife Post Office. Hard copies will be distributed, as before, to each household within the CC area no less than 1 week before the next meeting
Matters Arising - BEAR Scotland : 2 further emails have been sent but still no response. A further email was sent last week but nobody was available due to the extreme weather conditions. Action: D Hamilton swill contact Ian Bell who had been at the site visit - Letham Toll Footpath : this unlikely to be a priority for the Council however it was suggested we contact Fiona Mitchell at Fife Council regarding small grants that may be available. Also to ask for some guidance on how the Community could offer help (whether labour or financial) and also need to establish liability if work was carried out by the Community Action: John Vaughan to write to Fiona Mitchell - Monimail to Letham Verges : unlikely anything will be done before the Spring as the current weather is not helping. Quarry still to be contacted to request some help in restoring the verges. Action: John Vaughan to write to Hanson Aggregates - Well Tree Area Ownership : area will now be in even worse condition after the weather. Numerous land-registry searches have been carried out and Fife Council cannot establish ownership. “Land Ownership” came back to us stating that the area belonged to Marwick Estates however there is no documentary evidence either way. One option suggested was that we write to the Estate stating that unless they have any objection we can assume that it is land disponed to The Crown, after which the Community can look into the option of buying the land. Action: John Vaughan to write to Marwick Estates - Monimail Road Bus Shelter : nothing to report. Council still to replace the existing Shelter - School Brae Adoption : covered in section 5 : Trimlands Planning Application
Planning - Trimlands Proposal : the Community managed to get this proposal to go to Committee rather than be simply adjudged by a Planning Officer following strict guidelines. This will go in front of the Planning Committee on 26/01/11. The donation of land for a turning circle is included and the indication from Transportation is that due to inclusion of a turning circle, then adoption would be a matter of course – this will be included in their report to Committee. - Satellite Dishes/PVC-u Windows, Doors etc : Cllr Arbuckle is awaiting a report from the Planning officer who has been in contact with a number of residents in the area regarding various improvements that appear to be against planning regulation. A letter to the CC has been received from a resident stating they had been in contact with Planning in March 2007 who advised them that PVC-u windows are ok in a Conservation Area if the building is not listed and Planning Permission is not required. This does not appear to be the case as all improvements in a Conservation Area require to go through planning. TM noted that Councils are meant to provide a Conservation Area Appriasal and Management Plan for every conservation area. This states what is important about a historic place and establishes clear guidelines for their future development. However only a handful have been done in Fife. It was suggested the CC write to Planning to ask confirmation of their timetable for such a plan.
A “Welcome Pack” is currently being created online and once it has a lot of local information it will be made available for everyone to view. Any new residents will receive a card directing them to this information and also stating that if they do not have internet access then a hard copy can be obtained. Action: David Hamilton to coordinate writing of Welcome Pack Action: John Vaughan to write to Fife Counci - Wind Turbines : Fife Council are currently running a consultation on its strategy for wind turbines (see www.fifedirect.org.il/windenergy) . Our area is included on the different maps showing alternative proposed guidelines. Looking at maps we are right on the edge of where permission will be granted for several sizes of development. This means that there would likely be planning applications at some point in the future. Across Fife such applications might be submitted by individuals, companies and communities, but any application is considered on its individual merits. Neil Stoddart proposed that the CC submit a response to the consultation to encourage Fife Council to promote the ‘community interest’ before big business in any application for wind turbines.. The proposed response to the draft consultation document would be 1. Community developments receive priority over commercial applications. With the proviso that small, single installations sought by landowners for their own use be considered in the same vein as community projects. 2. In lieu of a commercial application, the local community is given the opportunity to make their own application, within a set time frame 3. Fife Council to develop a strategic approach to encourage & support community projects 4. Partnership working with communities on these project to enable the region to develop a sustainable future It was suggested that the Community Councillors take a vote on the proposed response, however not all had viewed the Consultation Document Action: Neil Stoddart to email the proposal to all Community Councillors so that views can be fed back to him and a response submitted. 6.
Treasurer’s Report : The account balance stands at just over £1850. Some of this money can be used to help with paving the area at The Toll (as per item 4). We have not received the annual “per-capita” grant from Fife Council – Action: Cllr Arbuckle to make enquiries for us.
Village Hall Report : Couple of events over the festive season with Letham Nights on Saturday 18th and the New year Dance on Saturday 1st. Finally found a good floor-cleaning material which is not too slippy and doesn’t leave any residue with dancing. Thanks also offered to Val & Willie Fenton, Gordon & Scott Smith, Jim Rotheram and Bruce Forrest for their hard work in clearing a path through the hard-packed ice from the road across to the Main entrance.
Playpark : Most of the new equipment is in place with the swings and skate-park area still to be completed.
Transition Toun : All households should have received their NHTT survey in the last week or so, which gives the chance to win a Christmas hamper.. The Transport Group has been successful in gaining partial funding for the footpaths network. Question was asked about the Monimail to Letham route which should have been a priority however it was stated that the relevant Landowner was unwilling to participate in this project. The subsidised insulation and draughtproofing offer is now closed though there are still some installations to be completed. An event has been arranged in Letham Hall on 26th February next year to highlight what has been done as well as look at the way forward for projects with renewable energy being a priority. The Energy Group will be applying for funding for feasibility studies into 4 possible projects : - Collessie Biomass District Heating - Waste Heat from Methane Extraction (ex Melville Landfill) - Wind Turbines - Wood Fuel Network Our area will come under future pressure to be developed and we need to choose whether we engage with that change, or do nothing, Either way we see developments start to happen close to our community. It would be amiss for us as a community not to look seriously at the issues facing our ability not only to generate power for our homes but also create an income stream that could provide us with many of the services & maintenance that we look to Fife Council for at the moment.
Our communities spend about ½ million pounds each year on energy, while there is a lot of unused energy resource in this area. There will be Community Consultation during the feasibility studies. There is more information available on the NHTT website, including a previous application plan. This will be updated, but the only major change is that NTT had decided it would be sensible to co-ordinate any wind turbine proposals with the Dunbog Community as the most suitable sites border that area. 10.
Community Wood : Developing ideas to put a bid into the Big lottery Community Assets to help purchase the land. Any wood harvested would likely be sold within the local area which ties in nicely with the NHTT wood-burning project.
Questions for Cllr Arbuckle : − Bow of Fife slow-down signs have still not appeared. They should have been in place by now (promise was either end of financial year or calendar year). Action: Cllr Arbuckle to make enquiries. - It was suggested that a letter of thanks be sent to Fife Council regarding the snow-clearing digger that was hard at work in Letham last week (although nothing had been done in Bow of Fife). What had happened was that the Council had “commandeered” all available such equipment to utilise in clearing snow around villages and it was lucky one was available in School Brae for use. What used to happen was that various farmers had snow ploughs they could attach to tractors etc but this is no longer the case - Question was asked about who is responsible for cutting back trees along a roadside due to some curtain-sided lorries having issues recently. Response was that it is the responsibility of the adjoining landowner. - There is currently no Grit Bin at Bow-of-Fife. Fife Council had ordered a supply of bins in June however they have not arrived. The Council will dump a pile of sand/grit at a specified area if required
Any Other Business : There has been an approach from Community Policing wanting to come along to Letham on a regular basis to report what they are doing and listen to any concerns those in the CC area have. The original idea was for a meeting held 7pm-7.30 prior to CC meeting but due to possible overrun issues, the suggestion will be for the Police to have the first slot on the CC Agenda. This was deemed a good idea as there have been one or two recent “incidents” within the CC area that, with hindsight, should have been at least reported to the Police in case they tie in with other incidents elsewhere! Action: David Hamilton will contact PC Pam Hay to make arrangements.
Date of Next Meeting : Monday 14th February 2011, Letham Village Hall, 7.30pm
Community Council Members : David Hamilton (Chair); J. Vaughan (Treasurer); Donald Dallas; Juliet Gordon; Willie Fenton; Tom Morton; Gordon Smith (Minutes); Neil Stoddart Letham Community Website : www.letham.org.uk
Published on Jan 17, 2011