Community Council Minutes for September 2021

Minutes of Meeting held in the New Town Hall 

on Thursday 9th September 2021 at 7pm

 

Present: Margaret Wardlaw, Linda Lauder, Gary McClure, Peter Mills, Jim Wood, Lynn Balfour

Councillors:
Cllr. John Docherty

Apologies:
Cllr. Linda Holt, Cllr. Bill Porteous

Public Attending:
6 members of the public were in attendance.

Opening of Meeting:
The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting and noted that items being raised by members of the public in attendance would be heard first, before proceeding with the main agenda.

Accumulation of household waste
A member of the public attended to report on an incident of accumulation of 8 months of decomposing household waste in a garden in Pittenweem, where FC were aware of the situation throughout the period of time, but took no action leading to a significant environmental health hazard for local residents.  Despite several residents reporting this and complaining to FC over a period of months, no action was taken until a threat of going to the press was made.  It was highlighted that the uplift of the waste was done at FC expense and has happened before with the same property.  It was also highlighted that other than being a matter of public health concern, this poses the issue of a waste of taxpayers’ money precisely because FC did not apply its own policies to prevent the situation from occurring in the first place. It was highlighted that this particular issue directly impacts the Pittenweem community as FC are cutting funding for other community initiatives and facilities in the local area. The PCC agreed this was an intolerable situation for neighbours and a failure on FC’s behalf. Cllr JD suggested contacting Donald Grant, FC’s North East Fife Area services manager. The PCC agreed to send an email to FC seeking assurances that such a situation must not happen again and also to highlight the misuse of taxpayers’ money.

 

Invited Guest – Andy Whiteford re. MUP
MW introduced Andy Whiteford, a local farmer who was in attendance to explain the various land ownership at the back of Pittenweem where the MUP is proposed to go.  It was noted that there is complex land ownership in this area. One proposal would be to adopt the old railway line which would be a route that has the least number of landowners to engage with to obtain agreement.  Andy Whiteford stated that he owned most of the land and is open to the idea of it being used for the cycle path as he thinks the MUP is a good thing to support for the local community.  It was noted that some of the land belongs to the Anstruther Easter Sea Box society and there has been difficulty in tracking down contacts for that group.  It was noted that Cllr BP previously sat on the Anstruther Easter Sea Box Committee and may be able to provide further information.  Andy Whiteford agreed to contact Cllr BP and left copies of a map outlining various land ownership for the PCC to review. Andy Whiteford noted he would be happy to come along to future meetings about the MUP.

West Shore Sea Wall
Residents on the West Shore attended to report on an ongoing issue with the condition of the West Shore sea wall.  FC have inspected the sea wall and have noted a cause for concern with loose stones jeopardising the integrity of the wall.  Although there is no area of major damage, there are lots of small areas of damage which would make it worthwhile for FC to carry out maintenance on the entire stretch of wall. However FC have confirmed there is no funding available during this financial year. PCC will write to Donald Grant of FC to ask for this work to be carried out as soon as possible.   It was noted that FC have recognised it is their responsibility to carry out the maintenance and not the individual householders.  Cllr JD will also chase this up with FC.  It was noted that FC also assumed responsibility for maintenance of the path and a positive response has been received about carrying out that work.

Footprint East Neuk
A member of the public provided an update about a small charity, ‘Footprint East Neuk’, that aims to promote and encourage sustainability to address the climate crisis in the East Neuk area.  Various events have been organised including 3 workshops over the summer.  There is a forthcoming tree planting event at Craigtoun park where 1000 trees will be planted.   Further details can be found on the website and Facebook page.

MW thanked members of the public for their attendance and invited them to stay on for the remaining part of the meeting. 

Proposal of August 2021 Minutes
The August minutes were proposed by P.Mills and seconded by G.McClure.

Councillors’ Reports
Cllr JD noted that a Scottish Government Ban on pavement parking will be introduced in 2023.  Responsibility for enforcing this will be delegated to each local authority.  Parking on pavements, double parking, and parking across dropped kerbs will be made illegal.  There will be exemptions for pavements that are wide enough to leave a 1.5m gap for residents, and to make way for emergency vehicles.  Cllr JD noted this could be problematic in the East Neuk given the small streets and noted that this topic might come up at next East Neuk Community Forum.

Cllr JD also noted the Pittenweem Recycling Centre opening times are being reviewed to consider increasing opening.  The following telephone number can be used as a contact number to make bookings:  03451 555550.

 

Matters Arising

Tolbooth Steeple
PM
reported that work is ongoing, but progress is slow.  Having spoken with the engineer in charge, it was confirmed that some work is currently being done off site including cutting of the stones and repairing the clockface.    

MUPS
PM reported that the last meeting to discuss the MUP took place on 27th August 2021, and work is edging towards a community consultation.  The questionnaire has been agreed but not the map.  There have been delays due to holidays and the pressure to do the consultation quickly has receded due to the next deadline for SUSTRANS funding being 3 months away.  A first open meeting is planned for Wednesday 29th September 2021 outside the  Co-op in Anstruther.  A meeting date for Pittenweem has not yet been decided.

SUP/Earlsferry
Discussions about the extention of the path to Earlsferry are not as advanced.  A meeting on 6th September 2021 was cancelled with the next meeting due to take place on 6th October 2021.

East Neuk Broadband
No update.

Community Consultation
It was noted that a Zoom meeting had taken place on 17th August 2021 hosted by Sheena Watson of FC.  David Stutchfield has been approached to take on the task of running a community consultation and is keen to take this forward.  He is collecting materials used from the last consultation in 2012.  It was noted that there could be funding available from FC to support the running of a community consultation.  It was agreed it would be useful to set a date to meet with David Stutchfield to discuss next steps.

Recycling Centre
It was noted that reduced opening of the Recycling Centre is a big issue for residents in Pittenweem and that people are upset about lack of access.  MW confirmed this issue has been on the PCC agenda for some time and that various discussions and approaches to FC have been made. It was noted that Willie Rennie has been surveying about this and it is hoped that views on the Recycling Centre will be fed back to FC from this avenue.  MW noted that this will continue to be an item on the PCC agenda.

Police Report
MW noted that a copy of the Police report for the last month had been circulated to PCC members.  In the last month there were 8 calls to the Police and 4 crimes were recorded.  The PCC noted there had been several house break ins in Pittenweem and it appears the perpetrator has now been caught.

Cemeteries Provision in Fife
MW noted an email had been received from a resident asking about capacity in cemeteries.  It was noted that permission has been granted to extend both Pittenweem and Carnbee cemeteries and that FC is looking to expand land elsewhere.    

Abbeywall Road Embankment
There has been no further update on this since the last PCC meeting.  There continues to be an issue with weeds re-seeding and access is difficult due to the steepness of the embankment.  FC previously noted they would be willing to do some shallow planting.  The PCC noted that anyone who goes onto this piece of land must be aware that they do so at their own risk.  It was agreed that the PCC would encourage members of the public to contact FC directly with suggestions for improving the embankment given responsibility lies with FC 

AGM
It was noted that an AGM can be incorporated into a regular PCC meeting as it is a simple process of ratifying the finances.  LL noted she is awaiting a reply from FC about the process.  

Cove Wynd
PM reported that the lamp for Cove Wynd has arrived but has not yet been installed.

Noticeboard
MW noted she is still waiting to hear from the joiner about fixing the noticeboard.

Benches
MW noted the Men’s Shed have begun work on the benches and have sanded them down.  The next step will be to paint them.  MW will confirm a cost for the work involved once the paint has been purchased.

Twinning
No further update.  MW will chase this up.

New Members
MW
noted that the PCC is still looking to recruit new members.  A member of the public in attendance noted his interested in joining.  The PCC agreed to carry this over to the next meeting.


NHS update

Information about Covid in the local area was circulated to PCC members.  There has been no update on the Out of Hours service.

20s plenty
It was noted that a poster has been distributed to some local residents about campaigning for the main road through Pittenweem to be made into a 20mph zone.  Cables monitoring speed have been installed, but there is no information about next steps.  It was agreed that the PCC would like the speed limit on this piece of road to be included as part of the community consultation.

Roadworks

  • It was noted that Queen Elizabeth Road will be closed on 13 September 08.30-16.30 for repairs.
  • Roadworks on the Anstruther Road have resulted in significant tailbacks.

Planning
JW
provided the following Planning updates:

  • Only a few planning notifications, most of which are internal.

 

  • 51 Charles Street: external extension passed.
  • 23 Charles Street: amended layout for installation of wood burning stove passed.
  • Inside renovations at New Grange Crescent, 8 Milton Court and Laburnum Cottage.

Secretary’s Report

LL provided the following updates, further to those already provided during the meeting:

  • Confirmation was received that Community Councils can resume face to face meetings.
  • The meeting due to take place with Crispin Hayes on 10th August 2021 was cancelled due to different views on how to hold a public meeting. Consultation will go ahead on the Anstruther section of the path first.

Treasurer’s Report

MW reported that the grant money had been paid into the bank account and a statement with exact figures will be provided at the next meeting.

 

Chair’s Report

No further updates out with points already covered during meeting.


A.O.C.B.

The following points were noted:

  • Water Wynd
    More needs to be done to stop people driving up Water Wynd and parking across the bottom of it. The ‘no entry’ sign has worn away.  Cllr JD will take this forward.
  • Fish Shed Smell
    Complaints have been received about a fish shed on South Loan failing to get rid of fish waste on a daily basis causing an unpleasant smell. MW will contract Environmental Services.
  • Vehicles 64 High Street.
    Vehicles are reported to be parking over yellow lines at 64 High Street preventing access. The Police have already been contacted about this, but no action has been taken yet.
  • West Braes
    Residents have been in touch about a lack of changing facilities for swimmers using the swimming pool at the West Braes. It was agreed that this issue should be raised with the West Braes Project for them to take forward.   It was also noted the West Braes road  is in very poor condition.
  • Primary School
    It was noted that a butterfly tree has been spotted growing out of the roof of Pittenweem Primary School. Cllr JD agreed to take this forward.


MW closed the meeting at 8.40 pm by thanking everyone for attending.

Next Meeting:  Thursday 14th October 2021 at 7:00pm in the NTH.

Abbreviations:

PCC – Pittenweem Community Council.  MW – Margaret Wardlaw, LL – Linda Lauder, PM – Peter Mills, GM – Gary McClure and JW – Jim Wood.

Cllr LH – Councillor Linda Holt, Cllr – JD Councillor John Docherty and Cllr BP – Councillor Bill Porteous. FC – Fife Council.

OOHS –  Out of Hours Service, MUP –  Multi Use Path, PAF – Pittenweem Arts Festival, NTH – New Town Hall. WBP – West Braes Project.

CGF – Common Good Fund, FCCT – Fife Coast and Countryside Trust