Monday, 23 April 2018

Morgan Playing Fields consultation

The Morgan Playing Fields lie between Peffermill Road and the Prestonfield House Hotel - pretty well opposite Nairns Oatcakes.

The playing fields owe their name to Dr Alexander Morgan, who, at the beginning of the twentieth century, obtained them for the recreation and training of students of the then Church of Scotland Moray House.  In recent years the premises have come into Council ownership.  They have been used for baseball, football, shinty, and Gaelic football and are used by Prestonfield Primary School.

There is now an application pending for the transfer of the Morgan Playing Fields to two Edinburgh organisations - Edinburgh South Football Club and Street Soccer Scotland who have proposals for a Change Centre.  The intention is to create a community facility for local sport - but also to provide 'Change Centre' facilities for some of Edinburgh's homeless people.  The application is under the Community Asset Transfer legislation.

A public consultation has launched today (23rd April) to seek the views of Edinburgh residents ahead of the proposed opening of a football-themed self management and personal development centre for people experiencing homelessness at the Morgan Playing Fields.  I understand that each night this week there will be events and a display at the Morgan Playing Fields for interested people to find out more about the proposals.

I see there are more details here.

Monday, 16 April 2018

Peffermill Road

Following concerns expressed about safety near the entrance to the University Peffermill Playing Fields I though it might be helpful to share the analysis carried out by our Road Safety Team.  The principles apply to many roads in Edinburgh.

Below I will lay out some of the considerations taken into account but the upshot for this location is twofold; previous analysis shows insufficient risk factors to justify prioritisation of substantial spend; further analysis will be undertaken with the possibility of some minor adjustments to the road layout.  Be warned, the explanation below gets quite technical.

Thursday, 12 April 2018

Engine Shed to become Holyrood Distillery

Many have wondered what is happening at the Engine Shed in St Leonard's Lane.

Last year the Holyrood Distillery project finally received planning permission after a 2106 decision by Edinburgh Council to give the project a 25 year lease on the Engine Shed premises.

Now the project has reached its funding target of £5.8m and expects to begin construction and renovation work on the site next month.

The distillery is the first single malt whisky distillery in Edinburgh for 90 years and has obtained funds from 60 private investors from around the world. 

Rugby legends coming to Peffermill

A charity rugby match between former colleagues of Doddie Weir and the current Scottish Rural College (SRUC) rugby team is scheduled for 7pm next Wednesday evening (18th April) at the Peffermill Playing Fields.  Doddie was student at the King's Buildings campus of the SRUC in the early 1990's when he broke into international rugby becoming a household name.

Doddie Weir has Motor Neurone Disease and there is a charity set up in his name, My Name’5 Doddie Foundation to raise funds for research into the disease.

Finlay Calder will be amongst the former colleagues of Doddie attending.

More details here.  And here is the link to the website to make a donation.  If you wish to see the match and contribute, just turn up at Peffermill Playing Fields.

Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Week-end of vandalism and theft in Grange

Sadly, the week-end saw a trail of smashed car windows and stolen property in the Grange and Morningside areas.  Grange Terrace, Oswald Court and St Thomas Road were amongst the streets hit.

More details here.  Anyone with information which might hep police track down the culprits should contact police by dialling 101 - or if you need to remain anonymous, 0800 555111.

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Responding to drug misuse

Some readers may recall the acute problem for residents and businesses in the Nicolson Street corridor and elsewhere in the Southside from drug abuse associated with so called legal highs.  The on street problem has reduced significantly - though there continues to be anti-social behaviour associated with drug use in stairs and in gardens and areas of resort for users.

A recent article in the Evening News led me to respond in the light of local experience.  Here is the text:
Who will protect our communities and families from the disruption and anti-social behaviour associated with illegal drug use? Or the damage such use often does messing up the brains of regular users?

I find it is a constant struggle to try and protect my ordinary constituents from the nightmare of chaotic and disruptive behaviour of users and suppliers. 

Tommy Shepherd, however, uses exceptional cases as the driving force for his campaign to make drug use easier (and more expensive to those who pick up the pieces) (Comment, Three compelling reasons the war on drugs must end, 29 March).  Three years ago in the Southside, and in other areas of Edinburgh, there were street fights, injecting within stairs, broken shop windows and a host of other disruption which imposed fear on law abiding citizens as the use of legal highs became prevalent.   After some local despair an enterprising and well qualified local police sergeant at St Leonards managed to persuade the authorities in London to ban them.  The disruption faded away from our streets.

I’ve heard the arguments made by Tommy Sheppard many times before.  But who will protect the ordinary law abiding citizen, as well as those vulnerable people who are prone to the temptations of drug misuse?  A clear message through the laws of the land will help.

Cllr Cameron Rose
Southside & Newington Ward

The original article can be found here

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Local resident Jim Sillars in the news

Former deputy leader of the SNP Jim Sillars lives locally.  He has been speaking out on a couple of issues recently. First, here is today...