Minutes 2017




Minute of meeting held 30th May 2017 in Ardentinny Village Hall


Present;          Marian Norris, Eileen Connell, Val Kennedy, Neil Robinson, David Marshall, Bill Tierney, Malcolm Bartley.


Others;            Councillor Gordon Blair, David McDowall, Dougie Menzies.

Apologies;       PC Donald McKay, Aidan Doherty, Councillor Yvonne McNeilly, Councillor Alan Reid, Steve Gillen.


The meeting was opened by Marian who thanked everyone for attending. She informed that the reason for changing the date of the meeting was due to Ardentinny Village Hall being unavailable from the 31st May. Argyll & Bute Governance Department had been informed and they were agreement as sufficient notice had been given via, CC notice board, website, facebook page.  

Marian asked if there were any Declarations of Interest in any of the items on the agenda.           None


Police Report

Since the last meeting in April, there have been 4 incidents, resulting in 2 crime reports. Both crime reports are for theft, with two females being apprehended and subsequently reported for theft of property. Both crime reports are related but are isolated and should provide no wider cause for concern.


Ironworks 2017 is due to commence during the last weekend in June and continue through July and August. Again, patrols will be carried out by Police Scotland in partnership with the Forestry Commission with funding from the National Park. Having been at the recent area network meeting at Lochgoilhead, it would appear that Ardentinny may see additional patrols from the National Park Rangers also.


Rural Watch is also being re-launched which I am assisting with. I have attached a copy of the Watch document and request that we encourage as many of Ardentinny's constituents as possible to sign up to the "Cowal East Rural Watch" so we can engage with each other more.

Minute of April Meeting.

Marian asked if the minute was a true record of the meeting. 2 amendments had already been made.

Proposed        Bill Tierney                             Seconded        Val Kennedy.

Matters arising from minute.

  • A letter will be sent to the National Park with comments on the Draft NP plan. A copy of the letter will be agreed with the CC members before sending. Concerns had been raised in regard to the lack of support Cowal receives from the National Park. It was suggested that it may be beneficial to ask what the NP has actually done for Cowal.
  • Roads. Letter received from Nigel Potts of A&B in response to the suggestions made by Ardentinny CC to improve particular areas of the road between the village and Gairletter. They have agreed to do some work on the 2 more serious areas of concern outlined by Marian. A&B council have agreed to put "bend" and "stop" signs at the bend just before the straight road, and to build up the verge at the passing place before Stronchullin farm. Gordon Blair suggested that perhaps one to one meetings with Council officials may be more beneficial in getting results more promptly. It was agreed that a letter to be written to the Forestry Commission about further deterioration of the roads due to the major project of removal of trees. Although A&B have already been contacted about the situation it was agreed that approaches should again be made to A&B. Gordon agreed to also put this forward at the transport forum.
  • Tallest tree. No further confirmation.
  • Graham’s Point. At a meeting held in Kilmun regarding the situation of the responsibility for grass cutting, it was stated that, if elected, some of the candidates stated that the situation could be resolved in 100 days. At present ACHA are cutting the grass as a courtesy.
  • Tritium levels. Confirmation that the information regarding tritium levels given two years ago is still effective.

Treasurers Report

Expenditure                Toilet cleaning products and sign for board                        £143.38

Income                                                                                                            Nil

Bank balance on 19th May 2017                                                                    £1804.92


  • Letter from Bruce re the damage to roads from aggregate lorries.
  • Several emails to amenities re the condition of the bins at church car park. Also regarding the parking of cars outside house at beginning of Midge Lane.
  • A&B  Participatory budget - voting regarding schemes involved in Gaelic promotion
  • A&B news round
  • Parking consultation paper
  • Community Empowerment Act  Participation requests
  • List of elected members emails etc.
  • Mark Ruskell consultation paper for member’s bill for changes to 20 mph speed limits in certain cases.
  • Planning.  Communication tower for EE near loch Eck
  • Community funding available A&B
  • Review of establishment of CC’s
  • Letter from Melissa re need to change date of evenings meeting.
  • Several emails between Kilmun CC, Blairmore Village Trust and Ardentinny CC regarding getting together to discuss on how to make the shore more cohesive. A meeting between Kilmun and Ardentinny as the first step in the process is being confirmed.



Forestry Commission

The Phytopthora felling at White Bay and Dun Daraich is more or less complete – but there is still a considerable amount of wood to be removed from site so the trails will remain closed probably until mid June.  Any sooner and we’ll let you know.


Apologies for the toilets being closed a few times recently – we’ve been having issues with the filters from the tanks becoming clogged.  Ian has been replacing them at least once – sometimes twice a week.  We are looking into ways of sorting this.

Dougie stated that this has caused problems with the bowling club. David suggested that a water course further up the hall could be used which may not be affected by the felling of the trees. It was agreed that Fraser McDonald would be contacted to ask if that is a possibility.

National Park Report.                                    None

Councillors Report  The three new Cowal councillors have agreed to a six month rota to ensure that all meetings in the area are attended as much as possible.

The councillors casebook system has been successful. An issue which has been entered into the casebook is the start of an audit trail and highlights when issues are not being dealt with.

There has been a reduction in the number of area committee meetings 6 to 4 per year. These are meetings which the public attend so the cut is giving the public less opportunity to have their say. The suggestion of video conferencing and pod casting to enable more people to attend area meetings is not expected to be raised at this time.

The review of Community Councils has been delayed for 6 months.

Business days have been cancelled which is seen as a backward step.

Gordon reiterated that there needs to be a more face to face reaction to issues raised such as road conditions damage etc.

Actual Reality.                        No report

Closure of Link Club.  

As the Link Club is in the process of closing and a new service is being developed by NHS/Social Care , there are concerns that there is no support for people with mental health issues in the interim. It was agreed that we raise these concerns with the appropriate agencies.

Anti-social Behaviour

Letter from Iain Wilkie.

“At the last meeting of Strachur Community Council we discussed a complaint from a member of the public about an incident of antisocial camping at Loch Eck within the boundary of the Loch Lomond & Trossachs National Park. This represented both irresponsible behaviour (i.e. the campers contravened the Scottish Outdoor Access Code) and unlawful behaviour (they mutilated trees). We had anticipated that the introduction of the new management zones in the National Park might lead to an increase in such events outside these zones.


It has been suggested that I contact other Cowal Community Councils that include parts of, or are adjacent to, the National Park with a view to firstly asking if they are experiencing a rise in the incidence of antisocial camping and secondly suggesting that, if possible, they monitor the situation so that we can get a Cowal-wide view of the impact of the new management zones.


I would be grateful for any information or views you have that are relevant to this matter.

It was agreed that we would continue to monitor the situation in the Ardentinny area”.

It was agreed by the Ardentinny CC members that we would continue to monitor any incidents of anti social behaviour in our area.

Community Council Noticeboard.

As our community council has their own website it had been suggested that the address was put prominently on the board. Other pertinent web addresses would also be included on the board. All in agreement.

A new noticeboard will continue to be investigated. Bill suggested that all of the residents be approached and asked if they wish to be on a CC mailing list. This would also be beneficial for emergencies or passing on information. This was agreed.

Delegates Reports

  • Caucus. There have been no meetings since February despite requests for one to be arranged. This means that important issues are not being discussed, agreed and taken to the area meetings. We will try again to ask for a meeting now that the local election is over.
  • Website. Photos from the new hydro have been put on the site. Minutes, agendas etc. continue to be included.
  • Toilets             Good comments about the toilets.
  • Cowal Health Care Forum.    The forum has been part of the group who lobbied to change the decision of the IJB to decide the future of Struan Lodge on 31st May. This has been delayed until February 2018 to allow further discussion and investigation. The forum is implementing a charter for partnership working in the development of the Health & Care policy. This will focus more in public involvement and recording of public opinions.
  • Planning. An application has been put into the National Park by Ross McArthur for changes in his plan for the hydro power scheme.
  • Community Action Plan. Still being monitored.
  • Coulport. No further reports other than the tritium levels. Neil acknowledged that some of the reports re tritium and other issues are quite difficult to access.

Community Updates

Ardentinny Renewables Trust. (ART)

Neil reported that they had their first official meeting the week before. As Bruce has resigned from the group, they have co-opted Kenneth Evans onto ART. Ross attended the meeting and gave an update on his hydro scheme. His scheme may be up and running by July. Once he has completed the work he will invite ART members to visit it. Photos etc. will be taken at that time and will be put on www.ardentinnycc.co.uk.  The minutes of the ART meetings will be displayed on the CC notice board and put on the website. There is a possibility that Ross will be developing another hydro scheme.

Ardentinny Village Hall. 

The 4 members of the management resigned at the AGM in April. There has been no-one from the village come forward to form a committee or management group. If no-one comes forward then the hall would have to close. OSCR rules are precise in how the charity/association works. An EGM will be called to discuss the future. Malcolm asked what would happen to the hall if it closes. This will be discussed and decided by the members of the hall association at the EGM.

Ardentinny Community Trust.

Due to Lynn not being aware that the meeting had to be changed the Trust meeting was delayed. The report was received after the meeting but it was agreed by CC members that it could be included in this minute.

Despite gloomy conditions, the Community Trust’s first Easter Fun Day at the Walled Garden was a great success with lots to do including an Easter egg hunt, egg painting, Easter bonnet parade, egg and spoon race and flower pot ping pong.

A T for Tools Day encouraged locals to donate tools to the garden for tea or coffee and cake. The garden gained some tools and

visitors without tools were offered refreshments for a donation. We raised £40.17

Simon began a Young Gardeners' Club, in April when primary school age children planted out young vegetable and flowering plants. In May they created pyramids with canes for the young pea and bean climbing plants.

The Walled Garden now has a Welcome Card with Walkers' in Dunoon. Local shoppers can donate their purchase points to the garden.

Ardentinny Conservation & Heritage Group

The ground has been prepared to put in the steps from the road into the Coronation Wood. We have applied for National Park volunteers to help us on Friday 9th June.

We have been entered and been accepted for the It’s Your Neighbourhood campaign. The assessment date is sometime in July.

All the edible flowers and herbs containers have been put out and brighten up the village a little.

Work on the Nature Trail has ceased for the moment as the forestry are still working on the hill.


Collaboration with Kilmun Community Council and Blairmore Village Trust.

All CC members were contacted and were in agreement that the shore villages may benefit by all working together. Marian and Eileen are meeting with the convener and secretary of Kilmun CC next week to begin the talks of how this can be done.

Lochs & Glens

Janice Hampson, who has been running this publication on her own for some time is intending giving it up after the next issue. A suggestion had been made that Kilmun CC and Ardentinny CC work together to take it over. This will need further investigation but Eileen put her name forward as willing to help.

Japanese Knotweed

Geoff has given up being responsible for the JK spraying. Eileen and Neil put themselves forward to take this on with supervision from Geoff.

Traffic Mirror

Neil reported that the traffic mirror should be up within the next few days. He and David had accessed a scaffold pole of the right size.


Dougie asked where the CC intended to hold their future meetings. Ardentinny Bowling Club offered their premises. Marian thanked ABC for their kind offer.


Next meeting Tuesday August 1st 2017 at 7.30pm.





Present;                              Marian Norris (Chair), Neil Robinson (Vice Chair), Malcolm Bartley (Treasurer), Eileen Connell (Secretary), Bill Tierney, Val Kennedy.

Others;                                Councillor Bruce Marshall, David McKenzie (NP) Lynn Kerr (ACT) Peter Wilson (Actual Reality)

Members of public;          Jim Robinson, David McDowall. Dougie Menzies, Mary Dodds, Bill Williamson.

Apologies;                          David Marshall, PC Donald McKay


Marian opened the meeting, thanked everyone for attending and asked if there was any Declarations of Interest.   None                          

Marian asked if there were any items for AOB. She indicated that the community council wished to add as an item regarding the CC notice board.

Police Report                                    No report as PC McKay is on sick leave.

National Park Report

The new Local Development Plan is now in force. Please find a link here http://www.lochlomond-trossachs.org/planning/planning-guidance/local-development-plan/

In addition, the Scottish Government is considering changing the way planning is run in the future. One of the proposals is to look at planning from the bottom up, being built from Communities interests. A consultation is entitled Places, People and Planning (http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/01/3486) closed on 4th April.


A new addition to the local NP Planning Process, which will complement the Local Development Plan, is the Local Development Action Programme. The Action Programme accompanies the Local Development Plan and identifies the actions needed to implement and deliver the development delivery and to highlight where more focussed action is needed to help facilitate this.


The Community Councils will still be the statutory consultee on planning applications within their area of responsibility.

 National Park Partnership Plan

 The new National Park Partnership Plan is under development and a draft will be open for consultation from the 10thApril to the 3rd July 2017. Communities are encouraged to review this draft and ensure their priorities are receiving the level of focus that is needed. The consultation can be found at:



 With Linda McKay standing down, James Stewart, who has a background in the Private Sector and Army, has been appointed as the new convenor to the National Park. James made a visit to Cowal recently and was shown Ardentinny Beach and the Argyll Mausoleum at Kilmun.


Camping Byelaws and Management Zones

 Now in place until end of September.

Eileen Connell had read the draft plan and was surprised that there is only one reference to the Cowal area. It was agreed that comment on this would be made to the NP.

David asked if Ardentinny Community Council would be in agreement that he remained our NP representative until the next elections in 2018 despite leaving the area. No objections from any CC members.

Minute of meeting.

A couple of amendments to be made to Treasurers Report and

Proposed                            Neil Robinson                                   Seconded            Val Kennedy.

Matters arising from meeting.

  • Traffic mirror. This has been purchased and Neil has offered to put it up.
  • Roads.  Marian has again contacted the roads department by email and by letter suggesting ways that the identified areas of concern could be improved more economically. There has been no reply to any of her communications.
  • Tallest tree. Still no clarification if Ardentinny has the tallest tree. Contact to be made with FCS for update.                        

Treasurers Report

Expenditure Ardentinny Hall Rent                                                                    £72,00

                                      ACC Data Protection Reg. Fee                                                   £35.00

Income                        Nil

Bank balance 20/03/2017                                                                                                £1,948.30


Several emails received. All emails sent round to all CC members for information and comment.

Forestry Commission

Community & Visitor Services:

  • Easter event for 2017 to be held at Glenbranter due to harvesting works at Ardentinny, only for this year – fully intend to be back at Ardentinny next year.
  • Potholes filled on Riverside road on Friday 24th March, any further problems please report to GB office.


  • Rhododenron clearing at White Bay area and Toll a Bhuic ongoing is mostly related to the Phytopthora felling, going well.

Forest Management:

  • Phytopthora felling is going very well.  Dundaraich Area felling is complete, just awaiting road surfacing before extraction can take place.  Toll a Bhuic and White bay progressing well too and on schedule.  Most of Larch is down and other species will follow. Again road will have to be surfaced before trucks can start to remove logs.

Neil asked if there is a plan in place to repair the road which is deteriorating due to the excessive use of the road by tractors, log lorries, aggregate lorries as part of the FC’s project of removing trees from the hills.  Also Neil raised concern about the state of the bridge between Angle Cottage and Glenfinart Hotel which is already in a precarious state and has been reported previously.  It was agreed that this we would be contact FCS and A&B to raise our concerns.

Lynn Kerr asked about an email she sent on Feb 22nd in regard to the minute of October 2016 meeting which stated that Marian would contact them again as there had been no report from ACT since Feb 2016. Marian assured Lynn that she had emailed ACT at least once to invite them to submit a report. As had been explained in the email of Feb 22nd since 2014 there had been a report given at each meeting from ACT. The provision for this has remained as part of the agenda.

Councillors Report

  • After further discussion regarding the condition of bridge, verges etc Bruce stated he will take the concerns regarding the state of the roads and verges to the council for comment.
  • Bruce attended the Area budget meeting and the area budget for Cowal for the last financial year was £596,000 which is very low. He gave a breakdown of how this was spent over the year.
  • Cowal & Bute Education Attainment levels. The recent report has not been good. Dunoon Grammar is one of the better performers. The primary school levels are particularly bad.
  • Health & Social Care Partnership (HSCP). Thomson Court in Rothesay is possibly to remain open. The consultation on Struan Lodge has been given a 2 month reprieve and will be discussed at the IJB’s meeting in May.  Cowal Community Hospital is also to be discussed further.
  • Grahams Point. At the meeting held in Kilmun to discuss the council’s refusal to cut the grass at the children’s play area and the history behind the situation, it was unanimously agreed that a petition and representation would be sent to Cleland Sneddon.  Acha, who at present own the land have agreed to cut the grass until the situation is resolved. Four of the candidates seeking election were present and all agreed that, if elected they would take this situation forward with a promise that it would be dealt with within the 100 days rule. Bruce has again put in a competent motion to the Area Committee.  Bruce showed the areas which are presently being cut by A&B.  There is a huge comparison between the amount cut in South Cowal and other areas such as Blairmore & Ardentinny.  Amenity grass cut in Cowal is 501.000 square metres. (Grahams Point is 4.500) Private areas being cut is 80.000 square metres. South Cowal area alone is 15,000 square metres.
  • Bruce gave a reminder that Ardentinny CC agreed to become members of Argyll Countryside Trust (ACT). Malcolm assured Bruce that this was in hand.
  • Bruce informed that he was not standing in the forthcoming elections. Marian thanked Bruce for his strong support of Ardentinny throughout the years and wished him a happy retirement.

Malcolm asked Bruce if he knew of any reason for the low attainment levels in schools in the area. The reasons given by the Education Inspectorate was poor leadership by Council service management at upper and middle levels.

Dougie asked who held the public liability insurance for Grahams Point. Bruce reported it was Community Development Trust.

Future Meetings

A suggestion was made that the CC held informal meetings to invite people to come and meet and either bring items to the CC for the agenda or we could direct them to the appropriate organisation for an answer.  All agreed that this may be something which can be tried and see if it is successful.

Delegates Report.

  • CAUCUS.  Meeting held in February. Main focus was the closure of the residential part of Struan Lodge. Support given to Max Barr of Struan Lodge Development Group. The CAUCUS agreed to write to A&B in support Bruce in getting A&B to continue cutting the grass at Grahams Point. Letter of concern sent to A&B regarding behaviour of elected members at area meeting.  Also discussed were the plans to develop Dunoon. There will be several charrettes held for consultation.
  • Website  The site continues with reports etc, being added. There is also a facebook page for the CC. This will hopefully link in with other fb pages.
  • Amenities.  We continue to look for volunteers to help with the cleaning.  One resident has come forward to paint the inside of the toilets. Another has come forward to join the rota. Aidan will provide volunteers to help. 
  • CHCF.   Eileen informed that the forum put in a vote of no confidence to the HSCP and IJB. This resulted in the agreement that there would be an additional 2 months before the IJB discussed Struan Lodge and Cowal Community Hospital. The forum was provided with the draft locality plan for comment. The forum refused to give any comment as they felt it was full of jargon and acronyms. Struan Lodge Development Group has submitted to the IJB a vision for the future which would develop Struan and take it forward.
  • Planning  An application from FCS to develop a new road at Stronvochlan
  • Community Action Plan   Marian voiced concern at the lack of support from National Park in Cowal. Also the Community Partnership has made commitments to the village but has not kept to this. In view of the work put into the Community Action Plan by the village there is a feeling of disillusionment and frustration toward both organisations.  An email has been sent by the Hall Management to Gordon Watson but there has been no response.
  • Coulport   Val attended the annual Cowal Local Liaison Committee (CLLC) in Helensburgh.  This meeting is so that representatives from the regulatory bodies involved in Coulport and Faslane can give their reports. SEPA is one of the main bodies as well as the Office of Nuclear Regulation.  The reports are available online.  A link will be put on the CC website. Jim Robinson stated that, in the 70’s a representative occasionally came to CC meetings.  It was acknowledged that now in modern times, information can be accessed online. Bill Williamson asked if the levels of tritium gas were discussed at the meeting. Val answered no as no-one asked this question. Bill would like this question asked but the answer may be on the website.

Actual Reality   A wood chip biomass boiler is being installed at the centre which will reduce their carbon emissions to zero.  Actual Reality will be part of the rota for cleaning of the toilets and will provide 5 people to help.  Neil asked if it was a system which also produced electricity. Peter stated it was only a boiler.

Ardentinny Renewables Trust

The difficulties around the constitution have now been resolved, the bank account is in place and the Trust is now ready to receive any monies from the hydro schemes. The Co-hydrover system is about to be completed and hopefully should be up and running in approx. 4 weeks. Ross McArthur’s hydro scheme should be completed at the end of May.  Ross has indicated that he is considering another one in the area.

Ardentinny Hall Management Group

There will be an AGM on 28th April. The container has been painted and the surrounding area replanted as per planning rules.  Financially the hall is ok but needs people to run it.

Ardentinny Community Trust

The Trust newsletter has been distributed. Lynn summarized its content for the meeting. The car park is now finished with disabled places. The Easter event is being held on Easter Sunday.  After Easter the garden will be open Saturday and Sunday.

Ardentinny Conservation & Heritage

Work started again in Coronation Wood. Cornus has been planted, broken branches etc been removed. Plenty leaves on the snowdrops but no flowers. A joint application with the trust was made for help with forming a path from the main road. This was not successful. NP has been contacted with a request for volunteer help. The flower and herb tubs are in the process of being planted. We have been invited to the Forestry Easter Eggstavaganza at Glenbranter.  No work at present at Nature Trail due to the restricted due to the removal of the diseased trees. A local man has offered to help with putting in the information posts at the trail. Our Ardentinny information leaflet has so well received that we have been asked to help with one for Blairmore.

AOB.      As Ardentinny CC now has their own website it was suggested that we replace the Ardentinny.org website with our own address. A robust discussion followed with differing views on the matter. Marian asked David McDowall how he felt about the situation. He stated that he would be happy with what the CC decides to do. Neil suggested that as there are future plans to renew the CC notice board this would give the opportunity to put all appropriate websites on. Neil proposed that we look into replacing the present notice board with a larger board that would suit the requirements of the village.  This was agreed. Neil will look into styles, prices of new boards. Marian deferred the matter for discussion at the next meeting.

Bill Williamson asked if the minutes are put on the website within the time frame recommended by A&B.  The answer was yes.


The next meeting will be Tuesday 6th June. This will include the AGM at 7.00pm followed by the normal meeting at 7.30pm,




Present;                      Marian Norris (Convener), Eileen Connell (Secretary), Malcolm Bartley (Treasurer), David Marshall, Val Kennedy.

Others;                        Councillor Bruce Marshall, David Robertson (FCS). Aidan         Doherty.

Apologies;                   Neil Robinson, Bill Tierney, PC Donald McKay, David McKenzie (NP)

Members of public;    Sandra Tweddle, Mary Dodds, David McDowall.


  1. Marian welcomed everyone to the meeting and thanked them for attending.
  2. Apologies were noted and Marian asked if there were any Declarations of Interest. Val informed that she had an interest on a planning issue. As there was no financial implication it was agreed that she would not require to leave the room when the item was discussed.                                    All agreed
  3. Police Report

Donald was unable to attend but had sent a short report. There had been no incidents or crime reports since the last meeting.

There are some additional joint patrols being carried out between Police Scotland and Forestry Commission Scotland over the coming weeks to look at the crime being committed in rural areas.

  1. Minute of December meeting.
  2. 2 amendments have been made, omission of item in treasurer’s report, and a typo.
  4. Matters arising
  5. .   Concerns over 2 particular areas of the road between Ardentinny to Blairmore. One is at the approach to the narrow road before Stronchullin Farm and the other is at the left of the bend to the straight road. Since September Marian has had several attempts to contact with the roads department but to no avail. She then sent another to Callum Robertson and to Kilmory headquarters but has had no answer.  Bruce added that he too had reported these 2 areas. The councillors have a casebook system of reporting bur has not had any report back either.  He will again put this through the system. This had already been reported several years ago but nothing was done. Since then the situation has understandably got worse. Val also pin pointed an area in Blairmore which she considers a danger due to the camber of the road and the possibility of a dangerous drop over the edge.

Traffic mirror.  The original purchase of a traffic mirror for the end of the road from the village hall has fallen through. However another one is ordered. We may have to get planning permission if it is to be located on council land.

  1. Treasurers Report

Admin expenses                                                         £ 14.98

Income Maintenance of toiletsA&B£ 157.50

Bank balance 20/01/2017£2055.33

  1. Correspondence All correspondence has been sent round to all community councillors.
  • SSE has asked that vulnerable people register with them for priority services in the event of an outage. Information has been put on CC notice board.
  • Letter from Dick Walsh regarding the council seeking people’s views of what matters most in the services they provide in preparation for the cuts it will be necessary to make. A link was provided for people’s views. This has been put on the CC notice board.
  • Consultation on the proposal to move the children’s services from Paisley to the new Glasgow hospital. This has been put on the CC notice board. Also parents in the village have been made aware of this.
  • Letter from Sharon McDonald to inform that A&B have been successful in securing £15.000 to strengthen and grow Gaelic across the area.
  • Letter from Humza Yousf with comments on the Dunoon-Gourock ferry. The tender process in particular.
  • Argyll & Bute Citizens Advice have launched their first newsletter. This will be put on CC notice board.
  • Argyll & Bute council news roundup information.
  • Argyll & Bute Local Housing Strategy Summary.
  • Loch Lomond Live Park Local Development Plan.
  1. Forestry Commission
  • David Robertson informed that this would be his last meeting with us as he was retiring at the end of March. He kindly stated that he has enjoyed coming to our CC meetings over the years and acknowledged that we have now moved on to be a very much more constructive and helpful committee. As yet there is no replacement for his position but David asked that any issues to be directed to Steve Gillen for the meantime. David handed round leaflets which gave detailed information on the disease which is affecting mainly larch and to be aware of the operations which are going on to fell and clear the area. The Birchwood Walk and the Carrick Walk are closed at present. Certain restrictions are in place re, mats to walk through, notices have been put up to try to contain the infection.  The extraction of the trees etc may mean that there may be timber lorries travelling through the village.
  • A report in the Herald stated that the tallest tree in Britain is in Ardentinny. Whether this is the case has not been confirmed. There has been a laser measurement of 224ft.  but exact measurement has to be done by someone actually climbing the tree.  Later in the year there will be a 3 tree challenge. The tallest tree in Wales, England and Scotland will be climbed by the same person to establish the tallest. No date has been agreed.

Marian thanked David on behalf of Ardentinny Community Council for the very positive support he has given us over the years and wished him well for his retirement.

  1. National Park Report             No report
  2. Councillor’s Report
  • Bruce felt that it is important that FCS finds a replacement for David as he too acknowledged how positive it is to have input to the CC. He will contact Gordon Donaldson to encourage him to find a replacement.
  • Bruce also reported to A&B another area of road which causes concern. He will check if that has been done.
  • At a seminar in Kilmory the Scottish Government was condemned in regard to the broken promise made to increase the police force by 1,000 police officers. This is unaffordable and there is an annual deficit in Police Scotland’s budget of £70 million. They inherited a huge HR responsibility which is a large part of their budget.
  • The police station at Strachur will close and along with one or two other rural places.
  • Budget will be 23rd February. There may not be much change, possibly because it is a budget year,
  • A decision is thought to be a 3% rise in council tax. The higher bands will have an additional 3% percent rise.
  • The decision to cut only 1 metre of grass has been dropped. There should be a more sensible approach towards it. The new thought is, if it needs cut then it will be cut.
  • There have been difficulties with the Conversation Cafes held by HSCP dealing with the re-design of Struan Lodge, Dunoon Hospital and other community resources. The advertising of the events have not been successful so has not had a good turnout. The HSCP (Health & Social Care Partnership) has agreed that future information should also be sent to the community councils to distribute within their area.
  • A&B has stopped cutting the grass at Grahams Point in Kilmun as they say that ACHA was the owner of the land. Bruce went through the procedure of bringing this issue to the Area Committee meeting. However the committee regarded the motion to be incompetent.  This situation will be taken by CC’s to the next by CAUCUS meeting.
  1. Actual Reality.

Aidan reported that they had a busy year and groups started to return again in January.He asked if there had been any comments or complaints about the children to which the answer was no.

They continue to carry out beach cleans and have 2 planned for the coming weeks before Easter. This is through the Marine Conservation Society which, rather than a normal beach clean enables the young people to learn about the nature of the beaches.

They have recently expanded the workforce with one and a half posts available in the maintenance and driving areas.Emphasis has been made to staff in regard to driving speeds through the village and out with. Good relations continue with FCS and communication regarding access to forestry area continues. Eileen informed that there will be a village beach clean on 12th March and that this will enhance the work that Actual Reality is doing with the young people.

  1. Delegates Report
  • Caucus. There has not been a meeting for several months but one has now been arranged for 16th February 
  • Website.         Nothing to report.
  • Amenities       The Minute of Approval has been finalised and we now have a copy for the file. It is the intention that supplies will be bought with the money received from A&B for this purpose.  We are looking for volunteers to help out and join the rota for helping to clean the toilets.  We will put a notice up on the CC board to this effect. Aidan offered help with this from his staff for which we would be grateful.
  • Cowal Health & Care Forum. The new chair is Duncan McGillivary and is prepared to take the forum forward  .
  • Planning.         A letter has been sent to the Licensing board in support of the application for Ardentinny Hotel. 
  • Community Action Plan.   Nothing to report
  • Coulport         After a report in the media about the MoD arranging additional armed patrols in the area a few people raised concerns. Val contacted Coulport about this and received a statement. 

“Ministry of Defence (MoD) Police officers have historically routinely undertaken external patrols in the vicinity of Her Majesty’s Naval Base Clyde, which includes the Royal Navy Armaments Depot Coulport.

The extent of MoD Police patrol activity is covered by an agreement with Police Scotland. Responsibility for the maintenance and enforcement of the law in Scotland rests with the Chief Constable of Police Scotland.

There has been no increase to routine MoD Police patrols outside the two establishments during the last 24 months although MOD keep security at all of its establishments under review and there are no current plans to expand these external patrols. Any proposals to increase external MOD patrols will be agreed with Police Scotland. “

Aidan reported that, as they work closely with MOD Police, they had a meeting at the Centre and had been advised that there would not be an increase in patrols but there would be a change in structure of the of how the patrols were carried out. There would be shore landings and patrols using dogs. .

Bruce had attended a seminar where Faslane was discussed and was informed that there would be an increase of 2,000 personnel with their families in the Helensburgh area.The Astute class submarine is going to be located at Faslane. Some of the operations at Portsmouth will transfer to Faslane.

Val has been invited by the MOD to the annual C.L.L.C.to be held at the end of March.

  1. Ardentinny Renewables Trust
  • Neil was unable to attend but sent a report. No transformer has currently been fitted however all the poles and cables are now in place ready for when this arrives. As soon as this arrives the whole thing will be connected but there is no time scale for the arrival of the transformer.

The ART constitution requires some minor amendments that OSCR had asked for. Anne Sobey from Community Partnership is helping out with these minor changes. When these are done the constitution will be re-submitted to OSCR.

Ardentinny Hall Management.

Very disappointed that the application for funding for the business plan was turned down.A strong protest was put in to National Park and Community Partnership as the application fitted their criteria. We accepted an offer of help of writing the business plan was given by Anne Sobey of the CP. However this has not been forthcoming. There will be a hall AGM at the end of April.

Ardentinny Community Trust.No report.

Ardentinny Conversation & Heritage.

Quiet at the moment but arranging a Beach Clean for 12th March.

  1. A.O.C.B.

Health Social Care Partnership.

  • An additional Conversation Café event has been arranged for Kilmun Hall on Thursday 23rd February.
  • There was a recall notice on our defibrillator. Geoff Carr kindly arranged for the appropriate measures to be taken to have the defib checked and returned. At no time was the village without a defib.
  1. Next meeting   Tuesday   4th  April.  Marian thanked all for attending and ended the meeting.


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