1. Market Applications, St Patrick Square/Nicolson Gardens – I submitted objections to these two markets applications. As there are five applications in total across the city from this provider, they are being considered at a future Committee. I have not heard an outcome as yet.
2. Southside Association – along with Joan and Philip, I attended the meeting of the Southside Association on 4 June specifically to hear the newly appointed manager of the old Odeon cinema refurbishment. Unfortunately he had little to report currently. The owners, G1, are busy on projects elsewhere so no work is currently happening at the old Odeon. However, they are committed to a high quality refurbishment. They are also committed to the reopened cinema being strongly oriented to the local community. There will be five screens. The nature of the food offerings are currently being considered. Once work does commence on site at a time currently not known, the project will take nine to twelve months.
3. Colin Christison – I met with Colin, Chair of the Southside Association, on 17 May for a general catch-up. This was the second such recent meeting. I think it is extremely useful for our organisations to be coordinating activities, as well as our get-togethers being great fun!
4. Neighbourhood Network Meeting – on 20 May, along with Bob, I attended a consultation meeting about the newly proposed Southside/Newington Neighbourhood Network. The meeting was pretty well attended. This Network is intended as the mechanism by which all community-based groups in the ward feed into community planning arrangements. All these community-based organisations will be invited to put forward nominees from which a single representative will be elected to sit on the South-East Community Planning Partnership.
5. Flyposting Letter – I sought the support of neighbouring Community Councils for our flyposting letter which Philip drafted and we are planning to send to the Council and to the Evening News/Scotsman. Three CC’s have responded positively, Old Town, Tollcross and Morningside.
6. And finally… - as this is the last meeting of this cycle, I would like to take the opportunity to thank everybody who has supported Southside Community Council in its current form. There are too many individuals to mention individually, many of whom give enormously of their own free time with no recompense, but specifically I feel I should mention our former chairs, Philip and Joan, who still support the CC hugely, and also our former secretary, Deborah, who did a ton and a half of work in her time. Thanks also to our members who are no longer with us, either because of having moved out of the area, or having resigned from the CC, or indeed through bereavement, as in the case of our friend, David. I’d also like to thank all our very supportive ward councillors of this and the previous Council term.
One of our ward councillors will be appointed returning officer and nominations will be invited for the new cycle of Community Council meetings. Elections will be held if necessary and the returning officer will call the first meeting of the new cycle. I expect this to happen across September and October. I hope that all our existing members will choose to stand again as everyone has valuable contributions to make, and I hope that others with an interest in the wellbeing of the Southside will also stand for election. It is impossible to know with any certainty, but I believe that, working alongside the very many organisations with an interest in the area, our efforts do make a positive difference.