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Maureen Child Update 13 May 2016

Dear All

A reminder that developer EDI’s second consultation drop-in event for ‘New Brunstane’ is on Wednesday 18 May from 3pm to 8pm at the King’s Manor Hotel, Milton Road East. This is being held so EDI can gather views on their amended (?) plans before they put into the Council’s planners a planning permission in principle (PPP) application for the site.  At that point, everyone should take the opportunity to comment/object to the Council’s head of planning and strategy. It’s not enough to tell the developer EDI what you think of the ideas, you have to tell the Council’s planners directly – yes, again!.  These are two distinct processes and both need your input!

But that’s next week. This weekend, there is You Decide!  when about 20 local projects are asking for your vote to secure a bit of funding through the Community Grants Fund available for Portobello/Craigmillar Ward.  Please do come along to Portobello Town Hall between 1pm and 3pm to cast you votes.  You can prepare by reading up about all the projects on the website link here:!/read-the-applications/

Portovelo (Portobello-based cycling club) is organising its first family ride of the year this Saturday 14 May, meeting at 2.45 pm in Longniddry. This will be a gentle bike-ride suitable for all ages and abilities, lasting 2 – 2.5 hours or so.  It will start off on the railway path to Haddington, which is flat and entirely traffic free; but for older children and adults there may be an option to extend the route onto minor roads nearby.  Everyone welcome! Full details are on the Portovelo website –

Garden Open Day in the Brightons, Portobello is on Sunday 15 May, 2pm-5pm.  Here is the link to Scotland’s Gardens site: : 

Also on Sunday 15 May, Tribe Porty is having its own Portobello TEDX event which will be live streamed and can be viewed at the Skylark in Portobello 1pm -5.30pm or on the internet wherever you are. See here:

Portobello Community Council is seeking feedback on whether or not the bouncy castle inflatable should return to Straiton Place Park for the kids summer holidays.  Please do respond here:

The Friends of Figgate Park are inviting everyone to a ‘Figgy Do’ on Saturday 28 May 1-4pm in Figgate Park,  There will be lots of fun things to do for kids in particular.  “Bring a blanket and a smile. There will be tea and cake.”  More here:

I have it on good authority that the world’s most famous steam engine The Flying Scotsman will be chuffing its way through Brunstane this Sunday 15 May, probably just before 11am.  If you are looking out for it, be sure to do it from a safe place!

From bogus callers to rogue traders, doorstep criminals are cunning, creative, and very skilled at deception. They will use a number of ways to try and get into to your home to steal and trick you out of money.  They particularly target the over 60s, but they are very plausible indeed and anyone can be taken in.  Find out more and how to combat this type of crime here:

Inspector Neil Clyde updated me on some vandalism incidents in Portobello back in March.  As reported in the Evening News and on social media a local 15 year-old was charged with the offences on Monday 9 May and a report submitted to the Children’s Reporter.  Inspector Clyde says: “Thanks to all those from the community who assisted with calls and images.”

The Food Crisis Prevention Project is a CAB partnership project with Edinburgh City Mission, funded by the Scottish Government’s Emergency Food Fund. The project aims to assist the growing number of people and families who are turning to or relying on food banks. The project seeks to help people address the reasons underlying their present financial crisis. A CAB adviser provides on-the-spot advice about debt, budgeting, benefits, housing, employment and a range of other issues. The service aims to create positive change and to help people withstand future difficulties. More here:

The Warblers is a singing group for anyone with a chronic lung condition run by local resident Jane Lewis. Research and experience shows that regular group singing is good for you!  Group members say: ‘Sing for your health – even if you think you can’t sing, you can!’ and ‘This group has brought sunshine to my Mondays’.  Mondays 3pm-4.30pm at Musselburgh East Community Association (MECA). They’re very welcoming to new members at any time. More here: or Contact Jane Lewis: 07819 582130 <>

“Challenge Dementia” is the theme of this year’s Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Awareness Week 30 May- 5 June. There is a fully funded workshop exploring how using tailored activities can help people to live well with dementia, helping people living with dementia and helping their caregivers too.  It’s on Friday, 3 June  from 12:15 to 13:45 at Home Instead Senior Care Unit 22 Castlebrae Business Centre Peffer Place, Edinburgh, EH16 4BB. More here:

Partnership working between the Portobello’s sea-going community and Castlebrae Community High School Craigmillar is a model of good Curriculum for Excellence practice for others to follow: Author Andy Johnstone says: “Key to the success of this partnership is the ability of the teachers to make connections and work collaboratively with people from across the community. I envisage that the benefits of this connection will help foster more understanding by pupils of their local community”. More here:

A bit of history: Scotland’s “first adventure playground,” modelled on Scandinavian lines, was established in the Craigmillar in the early 1960s. Edinburgh University Settlement’s had a plan “to create in the Niddrie and Craigmillar districts a number of projects designed to make life fuller and happier for young people”, said Mr Jim Brunton, leader of the scheme, following a 6 week tour of Norway and Denmark.  More here:

A date for your diary: Portobello Amnesty International Local Group invite you to a film showing of ‘Desert Flower’ the true story of Waris Dirie filmed by Sherry Hormann on Friday 27 May, doors open 7.15pm for a 7.45pm start at Tribe Porty, 19 Windsor Place.  £5 entry donation, drinks and snacks available.

Want to learn the basics of graveyard research with a genealogist?  A free course for beginners funded by the Big Lottery at St Marks Church, 287 Portobello High Street on Saturday 21 May 10am to 12 noon.  I can send you a poster with more details if you are interested.

As I send this off, I am off to get a tour of the new Thistle Foundation building in Craigmillar, well in advance of its official opening later on this month. Thanks to some very generous people, I am well above my original £1000 fundraising target for the work of this great health and wellbeing organisation.  All contributions still very welcome indeed, little or large!  Link to my abseil fundraising page is here:  See more about The Thistle here:

Have a really great weekend!



Councillor Maureen Child | Labour Elected Member | Portobello/Craigmillar (Ward 17) | City of Edinburgh Council | City Chambers | High Street | Edinburgh | EH1 1YJ | Tel 0131 529 3268 | Mobile 07718 666 481| Twitter @MaureenChild1

p.s. My face-to-face Councillor Advice Sessions, or ‘Surgeries’, are usually every Monday at 5.30 pm in Castleview Community Centre, 76 Craigmillar Castle Avenue (Phone 661 4064) and then at 7 pm in Portobello Library, 14 Rosefield Avenue (Phone 529 5558).  Now also at Craigmillar Library, 101 Niddrie Mains Road, EH16 4DT, 1st Wednesday of the month, drop-in session 5pm-5.30pm, thereafter by appointment only up until 7.30pm. Please phone me on Direct Line 0131 529 3268 or Mobile 07718 666 481, or email to check availability, make an appointment or request a home visit.