It may not have been the ideal weekend weather-wise for a picnic at the beach, nonetheless we were intrigued as to who was responsible for abandoning their partly-cooked bangers on the barbie along with unopened bottles and cartons of orange juice, water and even a full tin of mandarin oranges! Not to be outdone, fellow campers left a complete bbq, fishing rod, tarpaulin, plastic box, full rubbish bags and even a wood saw! These people don’t come unprepared.. a pity they can’t take it all home with them!
At the beginning of June, members of Ardentinny Community Trust made a Knowledge and Skill Exchange visit to Amisfield Walled Garden in Haddington. The visit was funded by the Development Trust Association Scotland and the host garden also benefited by way of a £200 donation from the DTA.
Although larger in size and five years further on, the Amisfield project is similar to that of Glenfinart Walled Garden, as they too began by relying on local fund-raising and donations. The main purpose of the visit was to measure the distance they had come; the problems they had encountered and how they were resolved; and where, with hindsight, they felt they might have made more progress by adopting a different approach.
The group was in agreement that the most beneficial aspect of the visit was the information gleaned on garden layout and crop rotation; and on how they had solved the problems of tree removal, path laying, and the storage of produce and equipment.
Ardentinny Community Trust is most appreciative of the host garden’s formal display and presentation; one-to-one garden tours; question and answer session; and very generous hospitality and hopes it might reciprocate when Glenfinart Walled Garden is five years down the line, if not before.
These were just some of the topics for discussion at Ardentinny Community Council’s meeting on 7 June 2011.
Increased Police Patrols
According to the Police Report, police patrols have trebled in the area compared to this time last year. They are also trying to have Ardentinny included in the ‘Operation Ironworks‘ scheme which currently covers Loch Lomond and Lochgoilhead. The rationale for this is that there is overspill from Loch Lomond to Ardentinny Beach since camping restrictions were introduced in the Loch Lomond area. The Community Council will write to the National Park stating the case for the need for increased security in the area during the summer months.
Forestry Commission activity
The Forestry Commission representative reported that the beach toilets had reopened and that the overground water pipe, which supplies the bowling club, would soon be buried. There are plans to erect a fence between the caravan site and the nursery field; to cut the beech hedge and spray for Japanese knotweed and to carry out a long-term programme of cutting and spraying the rhododendron. Stands for the bins at the beach are expected soon and the field next to Loch Views is about to be leased out for grazing, on a temporary basis. Finally, the local office has a new member of staff, i.e., Rebecca Smith, whose main responsibility will be supervising conservation.
Given the problems some residents experienced by being cut off by snow and ice last winter, Community Councillor Jimmy Gordon offered to post a notice on the village board and also to survey the potentially vulnerable to see if they would like their details included in a confidential database whereby they would be contacted and offered assistance, should a similar problem arise in the future.
Conservation Areas in Ardentinny
In the Community Council’s response to the National Park on the proposal to build affordable housing in the field next to Loch Views, they mentioned the possibility of some parts of Ardentinny becoming designated conservation areas. It seems that The Reporter has picked up on this issue and has asked for further information. It was decided that the Community Council should first access a list of what buildings are already listed in the village and then re-visit the discussion on this issue at the next Community Council meeting.
The Treasurer reported a bank balance of £2069.54 as at 30 May 2011 and, as was reported at the previous meeting, there had been no correspondence and therefore there was no secretary’s report. It was stated that the Trust is still looking for someone to fill the post of secretary and that they would advertise on the village notice board.
Other topics covered were the worsening state of the roads- residents were urged to phone the call centre to report potholes; an invitation to respond to the survey on the future of Cowal Hospice; deteriorating village signage; the Carrick Castle walk and the possibility of a village hydro-electric power scheme. All of which will no doubt be covered in detail in the meeting minutes when they are issued.
The next meeting will take place on Tuesday 2 August at 7.30. p.m.