Our communities and The National Park

National Park CEO Fiona Logan addresses the packed hall.

The 70 plus attendees at the Kilmun Community Council’s meeting of the 8 June could have been forgiven for thinking they were at the wrong meeting. Many had come along in response to a letter from the KCC, in the local Dunoon Observer, inviting the attendance of anyone interested in the debate as to whether or not Kilmun should remain in the National Park. In addition, it stated that the meeting would also be attended by the Park’s CEO and Director of Planning to discuss the benefits of being within the Park.

However, it was made clear by the KCC Convener, Ms Sue Minns, that this was a normal  Community Council Meeting and not a special meeting called to address any particular issue. The agenda had been adjusted slightly to enable Fiona Logan, National Park Authority CEO, to leave early but otherwise it was business as usual, albeit with some input from their NPA guests.

‘Business as usual’ was nevertheless illuminating. Kilmun Community Council has various important issues of concern in which the Park has involvement to a greater or lesser degree. These include the Finnartmore Housing Development; the proposed Forestry Commission road junction in to Midge Lane; the location of the proposed wind farm; and the proposal to designate Kilmun a conservation area.

From an Ardentinny perspective, there appeared to be two common threads of concern in dealings with the National Park Authority. First, complaints about mixed messages, a lack of and poor communication between the Park and the Community Council.

This also arose at the Ardentinny Public Meeting on the 26th January at which Gordon Watson, Director of Planning and Rural Development, had apologised and said he hoped lessons would be learnt in the way the Park responded to responses and concerns raised by the community. Second, poor consultation procedures and  the apparent disregard for the views expressed by residents in the consultation process.

Despite Fiona Logan’s assurances that they wanted to consult and work with communities, not against them, there was an expressed feeling of disbelief. For example, one Ardentinny resident cited the situation where the Ardentinny community had participated in the consultation process, saying where they would like additional housing in the village, only to find that the Park proposes to build them where they specifically don’t want them to be built.

While we in Ardentinny are still concerned about the outcome of the Park’s proposed housing development south of Lochview which will be decided by the National Park Board on the 23rd of June, we are encouraged to have the  prospect of acquiring the Glenfinart Walled Garden and turning this into an exciting and viable community project.

We wish Kilmun Community Council, and the residents it represents, every success in dealing with the challenges they face. [nggallery id=12]

The letter in last week's Dunoon Observer from Kilmun Community Council.

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[19:37:26] National Park CEO at Kilmun meeting

Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park Chief Executive Fiona Logan fields questions at tonight’s Kilmun Community Council meeting. Full report to follow.

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National Park Members Election 2010 – Update

The Park Authority is  looking for people to stand for election to the National Park board. Five members will be elected by the residents of five wards:
  1. Cowal and North Loch Lomond
  2. Breadalbane and the Trossachs
  3. Callander
  4. East Loch Lomond and Port of Menteith
  5. West Loch Lomond and Balloch.
Stirling Council is organising the election on behalf of the Park Authority and their Chief Executive, Bob Jack, is the Returning Officer.
For more detail about the role follow the link below. If you are interested, then you need to complete a nomination pack – you don’t need to live in the Park, but you will need to have the support of residents.
The nomination packs and full details of the election, with detailed maps showing the wards, are on Stirling Council’s website.
If you would prefer to pick up a nomination pack they are also available at several local offices and libraries.
The postal ballot will take place at the end of June and votes will be counted at Carrochan, National Park HQ, on 1 July.

For an application form to vote by post (other than where registered) click here.

Election Timetable

On or before Wednesday 5th May 2010
Publication of Notice of Election

From Thursday 6 May to 4.00pm on Wednesday 26 May 2010
Delivery of nomination papers

From Thursday 6 May to 4.00pm on Wednesday 26 May 2010
Delivery of notices of withdrawal of candidature

By 5.00pm on Wednesday 26 May 2010
Absent voters must apply to Electoral Registration Officer by this date

By 4.00pm on Thursday 27 May 2010
Publication of statement of persons nominated

Thursday 10 June 2010
Ballot papers to be sent out

By Thursday 24 June 2010
Notice of appointment of counting agents to be given by the candidate to the Returning Officer by this date

Thursday 1 July 2010
Date of Poll
(Ballot papers to be returned by 4.00pm, Count in the evening)

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National Park Members Election 2010

Residents of the National Park will elect five members of the National Park Authority Board by postal ballot with the count taking place on 1 July. The returning officer for the election is Bob Jack, Chief Executive of Stirling Council, who will organise the nominations and the election on behalf of the National Park Authority. The National Park members election 2010 (pdf 191kb) gives more detail on the timetable and how you can make sure you are eligible to vote.

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