LHNCC January 2018 minutes

Minutes of the Leith Harbour and Newhaven Community Council meeting, held at Leith Community Centre on Tuesday 23 January 2018 at 7.00pm

Actions and decisions are red underlined. Nem con means that no-one spoke or voted against an item.

1           Attendance and apologies

1.1        Attendance

Colin Brown LHNCC Adrian Graham Leith Links CC
Elaine Dick LHNCC Cllr Chas Booth Leith ward
James Duff LHNCC Cllr Gordon Munro Leith ward
Don Giles LHNCC/friends of Water of Leith Basin Sgt Niven Bull Police Scotland
Rob Levick LHNCC chair Laura Eddy Scott Hobbs
Jennifer Marlborough LHNCC secretary Kerry Nicol IS Architects
Douglas Tharby LHNCC treasurer Anthony Hemmings IS Architects
Arthur Young LHNCC 3 residents  
Bruce Ryan Minutes secretary    
Gillian Meek Victoria Primary School parents’ council    

1.2        Apologies for absence

Stewart Auld LHNCC Deidre Brock MP Edinburgh North & Leith
Judith Crabb Newhaven project    

2           Minutes of previous meeting

Approved without changes (proposed E Dick, seconded D Tharby, nem con)

2.1        Matters arising


3           Police report

Sgt Bull reported

  • Police Scotland (PS) are undertaking additional operations in and around Cables Wynd House, due to spate of robberies, violence, and drugs activity, and thanks to extra funding from CEC. There will also be checks on licensed premises. Other work by PS and partners will also tackle health, education, and poverty issues.
  • Noteworthy events in December and January:
    • 16 Jan, Portland St: 4 people arrested for drugs supply. Large amounts of drugs and money were seized.
      • NB seized cash goes into community funds eventually
    • 8 Jan: 1 person reported to Procurator Fiscal (PF) for possession of crack cocaine.
    • 14 Dec, Citadel Court: 1 person reported to PF for MDMA supply and possession of an offensive weapon
    • 1Dec: Gt Junction St: 3 people arrested for assault and robbery
    • 16 Dec, Abbeymount: 2 people reported to PF for assault and robbery. An air rifle was found in Citadel Court during a related search.
    • 5 Dec, Kirkgate: 1 person reported to PF for attempted murder
    • A person who is suspected of damaging a local memorial has been arrested.
  • Genting casino: incidents in the last 6 months known to PS
    • 16 Aug: report of fight in Ocean Way: PS attended, but found nothing continuing. 4 people were traced, warned and moved on
    • 27 Aug: report of large fight outside casino: PS attended but received no complaints of assault and found no injuries
    • 2 other calls about antisocial behaviour in the area: PS attended but found nothing ongoing.
  • City-wide incident of motorcyclists committing multiple offences. 2 people were arrested. This was related to a Boxing Day fatality. Some facilities in NE Edinburgh were damaged and/or closed.

4           Presentation by Scott Hobbs about Gt Junction St development

L Eddy, K Nicol, D Teague and A Hemmings reported

  • The site of this proposed development is at the south-east end of Junction Bridge, on the Water of Leith (WoL) – it’s the former State cinema. The original building is in the unusual streamline moderne
  • The building has two sections:
    • Foyer – this would be refurbished to the ‘original intention’
    • Auditorium (which has been used as a nightclub), which is in a more industrial style. This would be demolished because it has been damaged by fire, and has no architectural value.
  • The site has a south vista looking over Mill Lane. The north vista is of WoL.
  • The architects plan a central courtyard, and the WoL side having long ribbon balconies, matching the foyer.
    • The balconies would break up the mass, and have privacy screens at their edges.
  • There are quay walls between the site and the former WoL banks. (It used to be much wider.) These enable underground parking.
  • The whole development would be built using high quality materials. This may allay concern that the WoL side would end up looking like a factory.
  • It would have 36 units. Those on the courtyard space would be duplex/family flats. The upper floor would be mostly 2-bedroom flats, with some 1-bedroom flats.
  • There would be 25% social provision.
  • There would be 1 parking space per flat, including some charging points for electric cars and ‘plenty’ of secure cycle storage in the undercroft.
  • The existing shops at the front of the site should remain.
  • It is anticipated that demolition work would start in summer 2018, with building taking around 15 months.
  • timetable dem after start of summer. Finish depends on building warrant around 15 months
  • There was concern that the long wall along the WoL would be a target for graffiti. Plants next to it should protect it, according to the architects, and there is no (official) public access to this area.

5           Presentation: Tram Pre-consultation update

No presenter, hence no presentation. However, Mr Garriock had briefed some LHNCC office-bearers and members before this meeting.

6           Treasurer’s report

Balance at 29 December          £1182·02

Outstanding invoices                 £ 224·16 (Xmas tree lighting expenses)

  • This means an effective balance of £957·86

7           Secretary’s report

See Planning and Events below.

8           Councillors’, MSP’s, MP’s reports

8.1        Cllr Munro

He was happy about the decision about Industry Lane (item 9.1 below), and suggested that this might have positive effects on CEC’s planning department.

CEC is due to set its budget on 22 February

  • There is a large gap between projected costs and projected income. (Audit Scotland says that the gap likely to be over £140 million over the next 5 years, due to increasing demand for services, inflation etc.)
  • Hence CEC is working with NHS Lothian to release beds, but this necessitates places for ex-patients to go. CEC’s chief social worker is trying to remove blocks on health and social care – around 2000 people’s needs are currently unmet.
  • CEC is set to receive the second lowest Scottish Government (SG) funding in Scotland, yet CEC business rates provide ‘quite a chunk’ of funds to SG. Some of the blame for this shortfall falls on the UK government not providing sufficient funding for Scotland, especially concerning pay for Scottish LA staff.
  • The STUC has a plan that could raise £200 million. However, SG is funding business rates relief, for which there is apparently no call.
  • Hence Cllr Munro fears that CEC will only be able to fund the activities it is legally obliged to undertake, and that this will lead to compulsory redundancies.

8.2        Cllr Booth

  • He agreed that CEC is facing a challenging situation. He noted that Scottish Greens are challenging SG to deliver more local funding.
  • He strongly promoted Leith Chooses (item 103 below). Voting will take place on 3 March.

9           Planning

Links in this section are to relevant cases on CEC’s planning portal. There was discussion on whether planning consultations have any value because there may be too many changes between PAN stage and actual permission. However, Cllr Munro pointed out that these processes have had some successes.

9.1        Planning Application 17/01856/FUL – Industry Lane

This application was refused 20/12/17.

9.2        Planning Application 16/03684/FUL – Cala, Ocean Drive

LHNCC spoke at the Public Hearing at CEC Development Management Sub-Committee (13/12/2017). It was understood that nearby residents are not keen on the site containing large office blocks. Hence the application was approved subject to certain conditions: for example, affordable housing will be spread across the site; charging points for electric cars will be installed; dealing with some safety concerns. The aim of the application is to get more residents in Leith. It was noted that Leith doesn’t have enough green space.

9.3        Planning Application Appeal 17/00091/REF – Malt & Hops, The Shore

This appeal was refused. There had been concern that this development would harm vistas in the area.

9.4        Planning Application 17/03194/FUL – MV Fingal update

It was noted that residents had recently met with the Britannia group about this application. However, there is no possibility of moving the ship further from existing residents. It was suggested that objections could be made when the owners apply for alcohol licenses, leading to a noise action plan or other suitable measures. It was also suggested to LHNCC, Rennie’s Isle residents and Tradewinds could collaborate here, and that some community use could be obtained.

9.5        Planning Application 17/04428/FUL – Whisky Distillery

This application has been recommended for approval. However, there is no detail yet on how the historic paint shed associated with this site will be moved. (It’s on land owned by Ocean Terminal.)

9.6        Planning Application 17/04708/PAN – S1 Development, Ocean Drive

This re-application was approved 13/12/17. The full application has not yet been submitted.

9.7        Planning Application 17/05415/FUL – Scott Hobbs Planning, Great Junction St

See item 4 above. This application is waiting assessment.

10       Events

10.1      Xmas tree lighting at Victoria Primary School

  • This went very well, despite a traffic accident just outside.
  • LHNCC’s treasurer is concerned about 50% increase in costs (£122 in 2016, £176 in 2017). Action: chair to arrange discussion in Feb, Mar or April meeting. It was suggested that VPS parents’ council might be able to help with costs, as might Trinity CC. (VPS is partly in their area.)

10.2      Xmas tree lighting at Newkirkgate

This event also went very well, including the presence of celebrity footballers. A collection at a recent football match netted over 11 tonnes of food for the NE Edinburgh foodbank.

10.3      Leith Chooses

D Tharby reminded LHNCC and residents that there are 3 types of grant available (total available £116,000):

  • £500 for groups (unconstituted or otherwise) and individuals working towards neighbourliness.
  • £5000 for constituted groups
  • £10,000 for constituted groups

Workshops to help applicants are on Mon to Thurs 12 noon to 2pm, 5 to 7pm at local libraries, the Kirkgate etc.

Deadline for applications is 31 January.

10.4      Data Protection Act/GDPR compliance

B Ryan and J Marlborough arranged this in December.

10.5      Local Development Plan action programme

The Edinburgh LDP and NE proposals map are on CEC’s website. The action plan is now on LHNCC’s website

10.6      Participatory Budgeting training

J Marlborough has circulated information about this.

10.7      ‘People, Communities and Places’ social research

A report dated November 2017 is available on the SG website.

10.8      Establishment of locality committees

A report to CEC was delivered on 23 November. Cllr Booth reported that there are now (probably) meeting dates for these committees, that Neighbourhood Partnerships will continue to operate alongside localities, and that there is debate about locality committee memberships. (CEC Councillors will be the only voting members.)

10.9      NHS Lothian joint health protection plan

This is available on LHNCC’s website.

10.10   Coallie park

This is along the WoL near Leith Theatre. LHNCC agreed to support LCCC’s work here.

10.11   Edinburgh Dogs and Cats Home quiz

See https://lhncc.co.uk/2018/01/14/big-animal-pub-quiz. LHNCC members were encouraged to take part.

10.12   Invitation for group visit to Guru Nanak Gurdwara (Sikh Temple)

Date/time to be confirmed

10.13   LHNCC Public Event at Leith Library

Date/time to be confirmed

10.14   Visit to SS Explorer

Date/time to be confirmed

11       AOCB

11.1      Leith Museum

Dialogue with the Customs House is ongoing. A feasibility study is to start soon.

11.2      Trams

The trams rep should be at Leith Links CC’s meeting on Monday 29 January.

11.3      LHNCC website improvements, email addresses for all members

Decision: B Ryan and E Dick to arrange this, so long as extra annual costs do not exceed £100

11.4      Weekly planning bulletin

J Marlborough asked how she could receive this automatically. Various suggestions were made.

11.5      Newhaven Community Project update

Action: B Ryan to put this on LHNCC’s website

11.6      LCCC parking initiative

LHNCC was asked whether it would support this.

11.7      LLCC accounts

J Scanlon had asked for someone to audit LLCC’s accounts. Various suggestions were made.

12       Date of next meeting

27 February 2018

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