This month I’ve been very focussed on street work, responding to residents’ requests but also getting action off the back of pro-active street audits that the community and I did over the summer. I also met the litter officer to find out more about what’s happening with local action on litter. Thanks to everyone involved for highlighting the issues and taking action themselves to report things – you can too! Report issues to myself or email@example.com or by calling the council customer services centre at 0303 123 1015.
I also put forward a motion to assess council and councillors plans for their impact on sustainability – and it was accepted. This is an important step forward for proposals to show how they will both address social justice and protect the planet’s life support systems we all rely on.
After the community and I did a street audit in Raeburn Avenue, officers replied to say they will get paths fixed up, drains cleared, grit bins replaced, graffiti removed and hedges / greenspaces maintained. Whilst they said the street doesn’t meet the criteria for other measures to reduce speeding and its use as a rat run, residents should continue to report inappropriate driving or obstructive parking to Police Scotland by telephoning their 101 helpline number for non-emergency enquiries or online at https://www.scotland.police.uk/secureforms/contact. You can also sign the petition for mandatory 20mph limits for residential areas in South Lanarkshire here https://www.change.org/p/introduce-20mph-where-people-live-across-south-lanarkshire.
I’ve also been helping residents in seven other streets get some improvements, from street sweeping to hedgerow maintenance to fly tipping, new signage and empty homes. I’ve met with local residents, different organisations and council officers about parking issues around Alison Lea. Organisations have taken some steps to help in the short term, whilst longer term solutions are worked out – I’m still on the case.
There’s also lots of projects (and funding available) that communities can do to improve our streets and spaces, contact me if you have any ideas. And if your group needs help – equipment or time, it’s worth logging your ‘wish’ at Community Wish List page https://www.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/CommunityWishList.
I also had a walk down through Stoneymeadow woods, on the edge of the ward. It was a beautiful walk and with a few improvements, could be even nicer and link into High Blantyre and all the great community work done by Friends of the Calder. I’ll see what we can get sorted in the short and longer terms.
I’ve attended Long Calderwood parent council, Community Wealth Building Commission, met experts on promoting physical activity, taken part in the licensing board, volunteered with the Calderglen Volunteers (https://search.volunteerscotland.net/opportunity/a0g0800000V7MRZAA3/calderglen-conservation-volunteer ), met the Lanarkshire Co-ordinator of the Scottish Communities Climate Action Network, and attended the EK area and Equal Opportunities committees. I took part in a meeting of the full council, speaking on my sustainability assessment motion and supporting motions on feminist town planning and LGBT inclusive education. Finally, I enjoyed chatting to residents at Wingate Sheltered Housing, hearing about the planned improvements to their communal area.
What’s coming up: The big event coming up is a celebration of the new equipment at Long Calderwood shared pitch on Saturday 30th September, 2-4pm. All are welcome, whether you have family at the school or not – this is a community resource. We will have a fun few hours, with Beat the Goalie, basketball tasters with the Caledonian Gladiators, refreshments and more. Local people identified new for things for young people to do so the parent council and I did some more research with the community, fund-raised for new equipment. I’ll also be having a walkabout Glen Esk pocket park to check up on some maintenance issues and plan in some community action – get in touch if you have any views or ideas you’d like to share with me on this.