The next meeting of YOUR Community Council will take place on 18th February 2014 at 7pm in the Community Centre.
We reported last month that the quarry-operating firm, Patersons, is preparing to submit a Planning Application for the east half of the quarry site, which they currently lease from the landowner Drygrange Estate.
Investigations of Patersons have thrown up some interesting information on their compliance with environ-mental conditions at their other quarry sites, and we hope to cover this in more detail in a future edition.
However, more importantly, we have found out that Patersons operate a large landfill site at Greenoakhill in North Lanarkshire, and we are concerned that, as part of restoration proposals, they may be intending to use Murrayshall Quarry for landfill. Apart from the obvious noise and dust, the increased traffic on Polmaise Road would be unacceptable.
No plans have been submitted to Stirling Council yet, but you can be sure that this is one issue that we will keep our eye on.
Tillicoultry Quarries is now the owner of the west half of Murrayshall Quarry, having bought the land and the mineral rights from Lafarge Tarmac in December 2013.
On the face of it, this might be unimportant, but our view is that it could be crucial to how the Murrayshall Quarry reactivation saga pans out.
In the discussions with Stirling Council over the last few years, Tarmac have been essentially a sleeping partner, never expressing any great desire to reopen their part of the quarry in the near future, and agreeing that before they did, they would carry out a full environmental study.
With the change of ownership, however, it is inconceivable that Tillicoultry Quarries will take a similar stance, and it is certain that they are currently formulating plans to open their part of the quarry.
The big question for us is: Will Tillicoultry Quarries co-operate with Patersons?
There are major financial savings for them operating a joint venture, not having to construct a second access into the quarry being the most obvious one. However, our understanding is that they are independent companies and competitors in a local market for quarry products.
If they do not co-operate then this could lead to problems for Patersons, which only major changes in the planning permission for the site would resolve. What does this mean for our campaign to stop the reactivation of Murrayshall Quarry?
Realistically, it means that we have a harder fight on our hands and our efforts to develop a strong case against quarrying at this site must be increased.
Any help will be welcomed.
Stirling Council wants the community’s views on recent planning applications to build houses on two separate, yet probably equally important, historic sites in Cambusbarron. With responses sought before the end of this month, the matter has been placed on the agenda of the monthly CC meeting at 7pm on Tuesday, February 18, in the community centre. All interested members of the public are welcome to attend this meeting
First application is from Mr and Mrs Fernandes, of 1 St Ninians Road, Cambusbarron, who wish to build a one-and-a-half storey house in their garden ground. Their house was the childhood home of Dr John Grierson and the garden ground extends towards the Bruce Memorial Church. A similar application was submitted several years ago but it was later withdrawn. It provoked a number of adverse comments back then.
The second application is a 42-unit housing development of flats, townhouses and semi-detached homes at Hayford Mill in Kersebonny Road. This site is currently an eyesore for the occupants of the existing Hayford Mill flats which overlooks it. Listed Grade A by Historic Scotland, the site has suffered constant deterioration over the years. All that’s left now is a perimeter wall of about 1.2 metres in height.
Its Grade A listing, however, made the task more onerous for project architect Bobby Halliday. He has agreed to speak to the Community Council meeting on February 18.
Plans and documents for the two applications can be viewed on Stirling Council’s website. The St Ninians Road application number is 14/00034/FUL-PM and the Hayford Mill application number is 14/00035/FUL-IJ.
There has been no word from Hallam Land Management Limited the proposed developer of the Seven Sisters’ field to the south of our village. Hopefully no news is good news, but don’t hold your breath.
We hope that those of you who visited their exhibition last October are more and more convinced that a development of over 200 houses would significantly affect, and possibly destroy, the distinct character of our community. However, the developer is unlikely to drop his proposal without a fight, so it is up to us all to show a united front to our opposition.
The Community Council has investigated the ownership of the field across Polmaise Road from the Seven Sisters’ field. This field lies to the south of the Torbrex motorway bridge and is bounded on the west by the M9 motorway.
Information on land ownership from Register Scotland shows that it is currently owned by Town and Country Corporation Limited whose sole director seems to be a local farmer.
More interesting is that Hallam Land Management – yes, the firm who plan 200 houses on the Seven Sisters’ field! - has a ‘charge’, or has provided a mortgage, to the local farmer. While we have no evidence that there is any ‘arrangement’ to sell the land to Hallam Land Management in the future for another massive housing development, we are concerned that Hallam retain a financial interest in this land.
The Community Council will continue to monitor this situation on your behalf.
Still going strong on the third Wednesday of each month is Cambusbarron Women’s Rural Institute. It meets at 7:30pm in the Community Centre and all are welcome to attend.
The February 19 meeting would be a very good one to sample what the WRI is all about as there will be a talk and presentation by Scott McMaster of the Bannockburn Heritage Centre. Scott is a very entertaining speaker whose knowledge of the current renovations to the centre is second to none, as is his enthusiasm for the subject.
As ever at the WRI, there are competitions and February’s are 1) A Piece of Scottish Jewellery, 2) Three Hyacinths, any colour (for the Doreen Buchanan Brooch).
On March 19, there will be a talk by Shaune Hall on Forth Valley College and, on April 16, Willie Campbell will give a talk on Gargunnock House and Gardens.
May 21 is the AGM after which the WRI shuts down for the summer, restarting in September.
The snowdrops are back in bloom, providing a delicate starter for the floral splendours to follow this year. However, funds are needed and John Brittan hopes to bolster the bank balance by organising a raffle. Tickets are on sale at Cambusbarron Library, from CC members, the Foresters Arms, other local shops, or John Brittan himself (01786 449697).
The tickets (£1) each) are in books of five. First prize is £100 and there are 20 prizes in all, donated by local shops, a Stirling garage and other business people plus some very kind local residents.
The money is for the purchase of plants and flowers for this year’s hanging-baskets and tubs. If there is enough left over, we will complete the village lamp-post hanging-basket project.
In 2013, we were awarded the second highest accolade with ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ in the Keep Scotland Beautiful competition.
Your Community Council has been in considerable discussion over the past two years with Stirling Council over Heritage Trails.
These were originally intended to tie in with the 700th anniversary of Bannockburn - which, of course, is highly relevant to our village - but now, they've been slightly, but happily, altered to take in other historical features.
By June of this year, we hope to have an information panel on the east side of Polmaise Road, possibly at the Tinkers' Loan entrance. It will tell of the ghillies, after whom Gillies Hill is named. They were Bruce's sma' folk whom he stationed there for safety.
From this point, many are surprised at the closeness of the Borestone and the site of fighting on the first day of the battle. The panel will also tell of other aspects of Gillies Hill, eg the Murray family, three of whose four castles/houses in the Stirling area were on the Hill or next to it.
The second panel will be at Bruce's Well, giving a fuller explanation of the area than the current plaque there does. And, we hope, a third panel, outside our Community Centre, will detail how visitors (or villagers) can follow a trail around 10-12 historically-interesting areas of Cambusbarron, such as John Grierson's house, the Coo Loan, and Hayford Mill.
A leaflet, also produced by Stirling Council, may give additional details.
Saturday, March 15, has been confirmed as the date for the annual Fundraising Dinner held by Cambusbarron Rovers. It will be held at 7pm in the Bannockburn MW Social Club.
It will be chaired once again by ex-criminal lawyer Bill Copeland, a top name on the speaking circuit.
First speaker will be former professional sprint champion George McNeill, returning to the Rovers for the first time since his previous appearance in the 90s. Will anyone be able to remember if he tells all the same jokes? Second speaker is one of the funniest guys on the circuit, Allan Rough, the former Scotland, Partick Thistle, Hibs and Celtic goalie and now a popular radio show host.
Get your tickets now from Gary Grahamslaw (07590 913525) or any committee member. The Rovers are now back in the Foresters Arms for post-match hospitality for their opponents after home games. That would also be a good time to pick up tickets.
The appeal last month for a physio/first aid person for club training nights and match days hasn’t produced any response as yet. If you think you could help – and specialised training is available – get in touch with Gary Grahamslaw.
One of the new recruits in November, and most certainly the youngest member of the Community Council, Corinne Robinson, is to seek to develop more links with the youth of the community. It was agreed that she be given this remit at the January meeting.
Discussion will take place at February’s Cambusbarron Community Council meeting on the future use of the former Cambusbarron Social Club building and its environs.