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Minutes of the Meeting of St Boswells Community Council of 28th January 2016

St Boswells Community Council
Minutes of Meeting
28 January 2016 in the Lesser Hall, St Boswells Village Hall
at 7.30pm

D Oliver advised the meeting of what to do in the event of a fire.

Attending: D Oliver, R Parker, A Marks, J Pollock, S Pollock, D Black, M Evans, Councillors Stewart and Brown and 3 members of the public

Apologies: A Drummond and PC J Dawson

Minutes of Last Meeting: On the proposal of M Evans seconded by D Oliver the minute of meeting held on 26 November 2015 was approved

Police Report: The following statistics are for November and December 2015;
9 road checks were carried out resulting in the detection of 3 offences (1 each for speeding, using a mobile phone and non use of seat belt).
There have been 2 reported incidents of vandalism to the public toilets at bus stance on Main Street, St Boswells and a youth has been charged.
3 single vehicle collisions have occurred on roads around St Boswells.
On 03/12/15 severe weather resulted in flooding to 6 cottages at Maidenhall Farm.
A deer carcass was found discarded near Benrig Cemetery and the Police are investigating poaching activity.
At Newtown St Boswells there was an incident of theft of heating oil and another of derv fuel.

Matters Arising
• War Memorial – The Community Council has applied to the Small Grant Fund for a grant to allow the first stage of the project to be completed, namely ground testing and obtaining a structural engineers report.
• Buccleuch Estates request for ground held by Community Council – Buccleuch Estates has requested ground on the Track on the Green adjacent to the cottages on the Green that it owns. D Oliver and A Drummond have met with the owner of the cottage at the end of the Track on the Green to ascertain her position. She has met with her solicitor and we are awaiting response from Buccleuch Estates.
• Grass Cutting – A Drummond has prepared a new contract and grass cutting specification plan which will be circulated to CC members. A map showing the routes will be attached. R Parker will share this information with the Countryside Access Officer to ascertain if they can assume any responsibility for some routes. 3 companies have expressed an interest in the contract and the matter will be discussed at next meeting.
• Resilient Communities – agreed that Community Council would actively support existing community organizations rather than set up or recommend a separate group.
• Village Spring Clean – Agreed Saturday 02 April 2016 at 10.00am and to advertise in Post office and Church Newsletter. R Parker to contact A Finnie, SBC and pass note to Primary School, ATC and Guides.
• Garden Competition – options paper to be discussed at next meeting. A Drummond contacting Travis Perkins, who has bought over Keyline, to discuss continued sponsorship.
• Any other matters outstanding –
(a) It was confirmed that S McConnachie has been informed that SBC will be unable to provide an additional water standpipe at the Maxton Road end of the Green for the Gypsy Fair
(b) The Countryside Access Officer has reported that there is a planned upgrade of the path and steps on the north side of Benrig Dean with some of the work being carried out by the Criminal Justice teams; that an additional handrail has been added to the steps at Marks Green and a path in the vicinity has been leveled off; that the storm and river flooding damage to the St Cuthberts way is being assessed and in the meantime the route has been closed and signage for redirection is arranged; and that there will be discussion with the Buccleuch Estate Ranger regarding coppicing of some trees in the community woodland.

SBC Councillor Report:
• Parking at Benrig Cemetery – Councillor Brown has actioned this matter and reported that SBC have made a site visit to assess and repairs to the gate have been completed. A location has been identified for establishing an 8 car layby but BT need to make a site visit as there is a cable buried under the verge and the landowner needs to be consulted regarding partial removal of a hedge and the erection of a fence. Councillor Brown and D Oliver will progress this matter to achieve final pricing and identify funding options.
• The Railway has now achieved ½ million passengers since opening
• On 11/02/16 SBC will be meeting to decide its 2016/17 budget in the context of a 3.5% cut in budget allocation from the Scottish Government. Amongst many proposals for savings there is a proposal to withdraw from building a factory unit to house the Scottish Tapestry
• Discussion about the furore over the decision by SBC to cancel transport and close schools during mid January as a consequence of an incorrect weather forecast. Some of the issues raised during the discussion included the efficacy of centralised decision making, freedom of speech and effective and modern methods of communication.
• Cheviot Area Forum – in the absence of A Drummond, D Oliver will confirm with T Jackson as to his availability to attend as the Community Council representative. We need to identify Community Projects e.g. relocation of bus stance to Vets field, to ensure that it can be prioritized for assessment and action as funds become available (SBC contact is now Shona Smith)

Correspondence:
The Secretary is on holiday and a complete correspondence list is not available

Treasurers Report:
A Marks reported the following;
• Balance brought forward from 26 November 2015 - £1497.54
• Income received – SBC Grass Cutting Grant of £631 and SBC Annual Grant of £810
• Expenditure – Gareth Hughes Design the sum of £450, Village Hall Exhibition the sum of £25, Secretary A Drummond expenses the sum of £15.59, Village Hall rental and Christmas Lights the sum of £65 and Ruthven Alarms for replacing and checking Christmas Lights the sum of £138.60.
• Monies Carried forward at 28 January 2016 - £2244.35
• The Road on the Green maintenance Fund (based on 10% income) is £116.45 leaving a balance of £2127.90 normal funds available
The meeting approved expenditure for the purchase of materials and labour for the fencing of the Green Track.
The meeting approved expenditure of £25 to T Grieve, Post Office for Christmas Lights electricity usage.

Planning:
• No updated information about the Chip Shop windows SBC Planning decision.
• I Aikman, Planning Officer, SBC has written to advise that they are no longer issuing hard copies of planning applications and expect Community Councils to access documentation electronically. They intend to continue a simple notification of planning applications as they relate to each area. The meeting identified that in major building projects the planning application can run to many pages of map and technical information sheets and as a consequence some CC members would have problems accessing and storing information, and, if the matter required discussion at a meeting, the printing costs would be considerable. D Oliver will refer to the original communication from Mr. Aikman to clarify if and when hard copies can be accessed, and he and the Secretary will make written representations as required.

Any other business:
• Road potholes on Main Street, Springfield Terrace, Jenny Moores Road and The Wynd. Members advised to report to SBC online
• Complaint received about the smell coming from the Biomass Unit at Charlesfield, the increase number of heavy vehicles using the Charlesfield access road and the time of day/night that vehicles are using the road. The meeting required additional information before giving the matter any further consideration
• D Black confirmed that the bench from Braeheads is being repaired.
• Dog Fouling - Proposal in writing received from J Seth – that the Community Council prepares a leaflet to be issued to every household in St Boswells.
Suggested terms of leaflet ‘I am sure all of you are aware of the problem relating to dog dirt and litter in St Boswells and surrounding area. This makes for a very unpleasant and unhygienic environment. Not picking up after your dog has fouled and dropping litter are against the law. We would appreciate if you would make every member of your household aware of this’. It was agreed to consider this proposal at the next Community Council meeting
• At the last meeting a question arose regarding Councillors policy on ‘Declaration of Interests’. This can be accessed on the SBC website under Council Constitution and Standing Orders, Councillors Code of Conduct – in terms of the Ethical Standards in Public Life Etc (Scot) Act 2000 Schedule 3 Section 5.

Date and time of next meeting
25 February 2016 @ 7.30 in the Lesser Hall of Village Hall.

Minutes of the Meeting of St Boswells Community Council of 28th January 2016, Scotland