Kirkcowan – What's Going On?

Minutes of KCC Meeting – 21st December 2020

Kirkcowan Community Council Meeting – 21st December 2020 at 7pm, online via Zoom, due to continuing Covid19 restrictions

Draft Minutes

Present: Charles McEwan (Chair), Hazel McWhirter (Treasurer), Jackie Mortiboy, Andrew Gladstone, Mary Harkness, Joe Wright Jnr, Richard Marsh, Katrina Dick, Wendy Wood, Tricia Veevers, Mary Mackenzie (Minutes), Councillors David Inglis & Katie Hagmann

  1. Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting. (Slight delay over whether enough KC Councillors were present to form a quorum. DI checked and confirmed that 4 are required for a meeting to proceed.)
  2. Apologies: Lesley Parker, Debbie McBain (Sec.), Dave McBain, Dan Baillie, Mary Murdoch, Councillor Jim McColm
  3. Minutes of the last meeting (16/11/20):
    Minutes accepted: proposed by HMcW and seconded by JM
    Matters arising from minutes – (a) Letter received from Dr Sutherland expressing her gratitude and delight with her retirement gifts. (b) Official KCC email addresses as suggested by Dan Baillie, generally thought to be an unnecessary complication, but can discuss further as DB not present.
  4. Police Matters: No police present. Separate police report concerning local incidents in past month will be added to the website, and a printout put up in the Post Office.
  5. Treasurers Report:
    Account no.1 has £46.30
    Account no.2 has £13,162.34    
    £237.39 has been spent since the last meeting (of which £150 was from a DGC grant): J Kevin for planting bulbs, reindeer display for bottom roundabout, Zoom meeting and Xmas selection boxes.
    KCC can apply for 2 further DGC grants:
    a) £150 towards a Gala or any other community event, once pandemic restrictions allow.
    b) £949 for Resilience (Covid, severe weather etc).  It was decided to apply for the funds, itemise any money spent, and return any surplus to DGC later.
    This led to further discussion about Kirkcowan resilience matters. JW, CMcE & AG will take new inventory of equipment in store, renew some items, and regularly check generator.
    It would also be helpful to contact DGC for their resilience information pack, update the local resilience plan, including clarifying who will take on which tasks if a situation arises, and aim to produce a manual of information for the community.
  6. Correspondence: No correspondence.
  7. Planning: KCC is a statutory consultee in all local planning applications. None this month.
  8. Update from November KCDT meeting:  KCC representatives,DMcB is not present tonight, JW didn’t attend. The next KCDT meeting is on 22/12/20.

MUGA / Games area / the Park:
Ongoing discussion about where the MUGA could be sited, given the planning restrictions on developments in the park, and the need to explore all options thoroughly. Even an all-weather games surface would require fencing or netting for tennis, football etc. The field behind the school may be the most likely site, but investigations continue. Improving the park itself was a high priority from the community survey, to make it attractive to all ages, with seating, shelter, planting areas, all-ability play & exercise equipment.  JM suggested that commissioning a feasibility report to cover both projects together, and other possible areas for improving facilities, would save time & money and clarify what could be done within planning policy and other limitations. KD pointed out that following on from the community consultation, an Action Plan had been produced, the need now was to get on with the projects and commission a landscape architect to produce some possible plans for the park to present to the community.  She will discuss a feasibility report with the Trust Directors at their next meeting.

Dawson Court: AG voiced reservations now about this proposal as too complex, and not in line with the Trust’s aims, to invest in accommodation to rent. Repairs & maintenance would be needed, landlord’s obligations, legal issues, etc. Several members disagreed with the KCDT becoming a landlord and felt that any property purchase or investment should be to improve the village, restore derelict buildings or upgrade others such as the Hall or Autumn Club, for new or better community facilities.

Railway Line Path: AG and CMcE checked access site on the right, on north side of Wellhouse Road bridge. Phase 1 will be to have gorse & brambles cleared with a mulcher, and also move the fence so that the path crosses the field and meets the railway line as it leaves the cutting. It is not decided yet how far the path will go, though not as far as the Barhoise burn, before crossing field to join the NS road.  The question of public liability will need to be investigated. Once estimates for the initial works are in, KCC can apply for a Trust grant and AG will supervise contractors. A site map showing the proposed first phase will be made available on the website and in the Post Office.

Parking at left-hand corner at bottom of village: KCDT will accept 2 Architects’ quotes to draw up plans & oversee the creation of an off-road parking area in the field opposite the houses. A. Paterson and J. Mortiboyhave been invited to submit quotes.

Minutes: Any volunteers to take this on? No-one offered, so MMac was asked to carry on and accepted.

Kindling / Mailouts: Information about available kindling from Community Services was included in a KCC Newsletter from CMcE, sent out to all households with KCC Minutes and KCDT Newsletter in early December. Unfortunately, not everyone received all 3 papers, due to insufficient numbers printed and the rush to post. Apologies for the mix-up, will do better next time! JM was unhappy that a newsletter had been sent out without consulting the rest of Community Councillors. It was decided unnecessary to post out minutes and newsletters to every household each month. KCDT and KCC Newsletters will be sent out together, to save on postage, every 3 months, after approval by KCC.  Minutes will be posted monthly on website; emailed to those on the mailing list; and posted on Kirkcowan Facebook pages.
For those who don’t use the internet, printouts will be displayed and copies available in the Post Office, and if this is not suitable, contact any community councillor to have a copy delivered. The aim is to keep everyone in the community as well-informed as possible.

Park path: DI contacted Council maintenance dept. about grass overgrowing the path across the Park, making it much narrower than originally. No action has been taken, so he will contact them again.

Christmas Reindeer: HMcW & CMcE bought wooden decoration for flower bed, much appreciated.

Grant application to KCDT: KCC approved a proposal by AG to apply for funds to open up views on the west side of the Dickie Wood by thinning some shrubs, mostly rhododendron, and also thinning some saplings within the wood. The cost will be £326.  Seating / shelter could be added in the future. The primary school has been invited to use the wood as a resource for environmental & outdoor learning. The possibility exists of further community involvement.

The Next Meeting of KCC
will be held on Monday 18th January 2021 at 7pm, again via Zoom.
All welcome. If you have questions about using Zoom, email:

The meeting closed at 9.22pm
Mary Mackenzie (Minutes Secretary)