By Tim Wight, Forth ward candidate
I fundamentally believe that North Edinburgh’s green spaces are unparalleled in quality and quantity. This ward is home to many of the City’s finest public recreational spaces, including, but not limited to, Granton Crescent Park, Pilton Park and Forthquarter, among many more.
With the current Labour & SNP Council coalition’s seemingly unstoppable lust to build new housing on greenfield sites over the last five years, it’s time for us to stand up and defend our green spaces.
Our parks and green spaces are not only integral to the physical health and mental wellbeing of residents in North Edinburgh, but are vital to building and fostering communities. Many residents use and contribute to the local West Pilton Gardens next to the Neighbourhood Centre - which has also hosted successful fairs and charity runs, while pupils at Trinity Academy use Victoria Park not just for their lunch breaks, but also partake in litter picks and tree planting.
Meanwhile, Starbank Park earned the Scottish Government ‘green flag status’ last year, thanks in part to the Friends of Starbank Park Group bringing the community together to redevelop and maintain a diverse range of plantlife. The spaces’ effect is overwhelmingly positive to the community as a whole and must be properly funded and supported by the City of Edinburgh Council, not cut to the bare minimum.
On the same note, I support the redevelopment of Granton Castle Walled Garden as a community space and will continue to support initiatives for local good such as the Granton Community Gardeners. If elected, I will fight for action on the proposals of a “Central Park” near the Western Harbour, as to maintain Edinburgh’s net-positive house-to-greenspace ratio.
A vote for me and the Scottish Liberal Democrats on May 4th 2017 will be a vote to protect Edinburgh’s green spaces, keep them in public ownership and accessible to all, and ensure they receive the maintenance and attention they deserve.