Safe Routes to School proposals

The Council has issued more Spaces for People proposals to assist pupils going to and from school, including closing Montpelier, Bruntsfield Avenue & Canaan Lane.

Click on 'Read more' below for the rest of the news in my latest email newsletter.

Boroughmuir High School

  • Revoke parking along the North East side of Viewforth (approx. 6 spaces)
  • Extend the footway along the entire length of the North East side of Viewforth for 1.5m

Bruntsfield Primary School

  • Close Montpelier to vehicles at the junction with Montpelier Park except for residents
  • Close Bruntsfield Avenue at the junction with Bruntsfield Place whilst allowing for waste collections

South Morningside Primary School

  • Close Canaan Lane to vehicles except for residents between Morningside Road and Woodburn Terrace
  • Cut back vegetation at Greenbank Drive/Greenbank Terrace

Any comments relating to these proposals should be submitted by 12 noon on Wednesday 12 August to [email protected]

Review of Spaces for People Measures

The Council is committed to reviewing the temporary measures to aid social distancing every two months and the first review is likely to be at a meeting on 20 August, with a decision on whether to continue or not in each case. 

I have tried to engage constructively with Council officers, with some success, to make adjustments to the arrangements on Morningside Road and Bruntsfield Place to allow more access for disabled people and for deliveries to and from shops. I have asked the local traders groups for evidence of the impact on their trading, as these measures must support local businesses.

I have also raised the safety concerns of local residents around the cycle lane proposals for the A702.  The temporary closure of Braid Road seems to have served its purpose and the consequent increase in congestion and pollution on Comiston Road is all too apparent.

Reduction in Community Policing

Until 1 April this year Edinburgh had 34 Council-funded community police officers, 2 per ward, to augment the Community Policing Team.  They focused on community engagement, tackling anti-social behaviour and other community concerns.  Following budget cuts by the SNP/Labour Council Administration, the funding of all community police officers was withdrawn.  The Divisional Commander for Edinburgh, Sean Scott, has confirmed that a revised community policing team will operate within the South East Locality, which includes Morningside Ward.  These community officers will cover wider areas, rather than being attached to a particular ward.

Public Toilets to Stay Closed till at least October

The Council has confirmed that all but seven public toilets will remain closed until at least October.  The toilets at Bruntsfield Links were re-opened last month.  Given that more people are out and about, Lib Dem councillors asked for more toilets to be re-opened.  The request was turned down on financial grounds and it was suggested that the facilities in cafes and shops be used instead.  The report to councillors is item 6.5 and can be read here

Eric Liddell Centre launches new Wellbeing Project

In a further expansion in the range of support services offered at ELC, a recently launched Wellbeing Project offers music and singing groups, yoga, Tai Chi, mindfulness, dancing, and art-based activities that will be available online via Zoom. The Wellbeing Project is for people in Edinburgh who are in the “sheltered” group, because of advanced age, health condition or disability, or in a caring role. You can read more here or contact Music Development and Activities Coordinator, Chloe at [email protected]   In order to re-open, ELC urgently needs to raise £110,000 – you can read more about this and donate here.

Responses to the new Local Development Plan

The Council is preparing a new Local Development Plan for Edinburgh called City Plan 2030. This plan will set out how we develop our city sustainably over the next ten years. A report on the responses to Choices for City Plan 2030 and the next steps will be considered by the Council’s Planning Committee on 12 August 2020.  It is item 6.1 on the meeting agenda and can be read here.

Local Business Voucher Scheme Idea Scuppered

The Council has paid out almost £103m in grants to local businesses, out of £111m allocated by the Scottish Government. Lib Dem councillors raised the idea of using the remaining funds to underwrite a scheme to give council taxpayers vouchers to spend in local businesses as a way of supporting their recovery.  It was voted down by the SNP/Labour Coalition with support from the Conservatives.  You can read about the proposal at item 8.1 here.

The latest Coronavirus advice from the Scottish Government is available here. There are details of the extension of the flu vaccine programme to people aged over 55 here and updated guidance on wedding ceremonies here.

The latest advice on Council services is available here.

If you know anyone else who might be interested to read this, please feel free to forward it.  If you have received this via a friend, and would like to receive it direct, please contact me on the address below and ask to be added to my circulation list.

You can email me at: ne[email protected]

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Best wishes & stay safe

Councillor Neil Ross
Liberal Democrat Councillor for Morningside Ward


Published and promoted by Fraser Graham on behalf of Neil Ross, (Scottish Liberal Democrats) both at 4 Grange Road, Edinburgh EH9 1UH.

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