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Maureen Child Update 18 March

Dear All

I am looking forward to meeting about 60 more Community Councillors, from across Edinburgh, at an induction and training evening tonight at the City Chambers. Around 90 Community Councillors already attended a similar event back in January and the feedback was good. Tonight we will be concentrating entirely on their role as a statutory consultee in the planning process. Of over 500 of these volunteers across Edinburgh, over a half are new Community Councillors.

The Portobello Community Council Consultation and Engagement Committee will meet tomorrow, Wednesday 19 March at 9e Bellfield Lane, starting at 8.30pm.

St. Philip’s Drama Group perform the Hot Mikado in St. Philip’s Church Hall from Wednesday 19 March to Saturday 22 March at 7.30pm. The show is a 1940s lively, jazzed up version of the original Gilbert and Sullivan operetta. Tickets, including refreshments, cost £10 for adults and £5 for children and students. Phone Anne McKerchar on 0131 669 3123 for tickets.

The tweaking of changes to the main traffic lights at the centre of Portobello continues. The pedestrian phase can come up between each of the two traffic phases. The maximum waiting time for pedestrians at any of the three controlled crossing affected is related to the longest traffic ‘green time’. The signals team have ‘fine tuned’ and slightly reduced the maximum traffic green time on the Portobello High Street approach, more than once now. This allows for an increase in traffic green time on Brighton Place/Bath Street and reduces the queue time on this approach. The maximum waiting period for pedestrians will now be slightly less than at the start, at around 57 seconds. It is still under review.

The Council has agreed a ten year lease of 2 Niddrie Mains Road, Edinburgh, to Artur Wonsik, of 2 Niddrie Mains Road for a Polish food store, which is very welcome indeed and I wish him well.

It’s good to see this empty shop unit occupied. Up until nearly almost three years ago, No 2 was occupied by the local credit union and before that Luca’s ice cream shop. Castle Credit Union (CCC) – which now covers Portobello, parts of Restalrig and Gilmerton – have a new collection point at Community Ability Network (CAN) on Niddrie Mains Road, where money advice is also available. To join CCC and or ask a question about your savings or low-cost loans, though, go to Castle Credit Union, 3/2 Hays Community Business Centre 4 Hay AvenueEH16 4A; phone 0131 259 9738; Email craigmillarcu@googlemail.com The CCC website is in the process of being renewed.

I have had a number of complaints about parking in residential streets that makes it difficult for emergency vehicles and bin lorries to get access – situation that could be life threatening if not very inconvenient. This is the first service’s view: Big red fire trucks need space: pic.twitter.com/PS8DOCIPJQ

One of our local Neighbourhood Partnership subgroups (link below my signature) have been finding out more about food bank provision locally. One is the Wilson Memorial Church, Moira Terrace, open Tuesday 10.30-1.30. Its run through the City Mission. Referrals can be made through Sheila Gilmore MPs office on 0131 661 7522. The Neighbourhood Support Team in the East Neighbourhood Centre also makes referrals, and can collect food parcels for clients who can’t get to the bases in south Edinburgh and other parts of the city – phone 0131 529 6397 for information. Housing officers can refer tenants that they work with. The Cyrenians, have a drop-in service on Tuesday mornings in the East Neighbourhood Centre can also make referrals. The Access Point has a comprehensive range of advice and help services, including food banks on this link: http://edspace.org.uk/default.asp?page=22&sid=229 .

New ’mid market’ homes for rent will soon be available at Greendykes. If you or anyone you know are interested, do get in touch to note your interest and get a form, by phoning 0131 529 5080.

Have your say on proposed school holiday changes now out to consultation. Might result in a shorter Christmas and longer summer breaks: http://www.portobellocc.org/Consultations.php

We would be pleased for as many young people as possible to join us at East Neighbourhood Centre on Friday 28 March at 2pm for the Greater Craigmillar Youth Gathering, led by young people themselves. Call 0131 529 3111 to book a place.

The next film at the Wash House, organised by Portobello Open Door is The Great Gatsby on the last Saturday of the month. Tickets available from Popeye’s Cafe on Porty High Street. The last two films have been a sell-out. http://www.the-pod.org/film-night.html For more of what is happening at the Wash House, see their new website at : http://thewashhouse.org

Please help advertise the community event for planning Craigmillar Town Centre – scroll down at bit.ly/NbxUzP . Ideas for a new Masterplan for the Craigmillar Town Centre is being consulted upon and PARC Craigmillar, who are leading this process, want hear the views of as many members of community as possible. The drop-in event will be held at: The White House, Niddrie Mains Road, Craigmillar on Thursday 27 March 2014 from 3pm – 7 pm. If you can’t make the Town Centre Update drop in this week, you can find details here: edigroupscotland.co.uk/projects/8/95/… for updates pic.twitter.com/Y2UBwQSylu

From the STV website, some great photos of The Velvet Easel in Portobello and information on the current exhibition. fb.me/12eAFpYPg

For any issue for the local environment team about dog fouling, littering, street cleaning or parks or suggestions for improvements to local areas, the direct contact is eastenvironment@edinburgh.gov.uk 0131 529 3298

We have been assured that Asda do want to go out and retrieve any abandoned trolleys Contact: Community_edinburgh@asda.co.uk 0131 669 9151 Extension 222

On-line registration is now open for the 2014 It’s Your Neighbourhood Campaign. Registration is available here: http://www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org/environmental-quality/its-your-neighbourhood/entrant-support/register/

The Craigmillar Archives Trust is going strong and always looking for new people to get involved. See: http://craigmillararchivestrust.webplus.net/index.html

In response to local people, Joppa Quarry Park wildflower meadow is being moved from the slope in the middle to under the newly planted trees on the top level and reseed the existing area. Work will completed in late April. This now frees up all the space on the slope for walking down therefore parts of the slope won’t be churned up as much.

On Figgate Burn Park Walkway over the pond was slippery in the rain. I had a couple of complaints and as a consequence the total length of the board walk has now been covered in wire mesh. The material is re-used mesh from around newly planted trees, to reduce cost and recycles waste that would have gone to land fill. The parks team hope to have this project completed by the end of March.

Plans are progressing slowly for a new property enforcement service in Edinburgh – a further extension to the Shared Repairs service, which will continue to respond to any emergency situations on a 24/7 basis, as it has done since last April. Following the responses to the public consultation, officers were tasked with developing proposals for re-establishing an enforcement service by the end of 2014. Here’s The report

I hope the above is helpful. Feedback welcome!

Best wishes

Maureen