August 14th 2014 Minutes
Johnstone Community Council
Minutes of the ordinary meeting of Johnstone Community Council held
on Thursday 14th
August 2014 at 7.00pm in Cochrane Castle Community
Members: Robert Bowater, Brian Cairns, Evelyn Cairns, Stewart Clark,
Elizabeth Cosgrove, Wilma Dean, Ron Ewing, Linda Flint, Elizabeth Forrest,
Malcolm Hill, George Kennedy, Dennis Lavery, Christina Leon, Daniel McKay,
Callum MacMillan and Valerie Reilly.
Also in attendance:-
Councillors (Ward 7) –John Hood, Iain McMillan.
(Ward 8) – Derek Bibby, Andy Doig.
Two police officers, two representatives of RailQwest and one member of the
public were also present.
David Higginson, Pamela Higginson, Carol Ewing, and Councillors John
Caldwell, Stephen McGee, Christopher Gilmour.
The minutes of the previous meeting were read and agreed.
Proposed by Wilma Dean
Seconded by Ron Ewing
3. Matters Arising
Councillor McMillan reported that the Sports Hub car park was now complete
Councillor Doig noted that Renfrewshire Council had agreed to name a new
street alongside the new Town Hall is to be named ‘Parker’s Way’ in honour of
the late Derek Parker, community activist and local historian, with the unusual
name pattern approved in this instance after his regular column in the Paisley
4. Presentation by Ian Richard of RailQwest
RailQwest were described as a Cross Party Group for Rail established in
This was introduced as one of a series of talks to groups along the Glasgow to
Ayr rail route corridor. It concerns the ‘City Union Line’ which RQ are trying to
have electrified. This is a missing link of some 4km which is currently in daily
use to move rolling stock for freight diversions.
Transport Scotland claim that it will cost £200 million to electrify this short
route. RQ say it would be nearer £20 million.
The benefits of this would be a direct link from Ayrshire to Edinburgh and
would result in increased use of public transport and therefore reduced carbon
emissions on the M8; more links between the major population centres of the
Central Belt; better access to Prestwick for the majority of Scotland’s
population and reduced congestion at both Central and Queen Street stations.
Questions were raised as to how this would affect the frequency of trains on
the route and whether they would become even more crowded.
IR replied that it would place more travellers onto services more appropriate
for their journeys.
The RQ representatives left the meeting at 7.45pm
5. Treasurer’s Report
On David Higginson’s behalf, George Kennedy reported that funds stood at
A forthcoming expense would be the purchase of a poppy wreath for
6. Secretary’s Report
Proposed changes to JCC Committee – GK announced that he will not be
able to continue as Secretary after the October AGM due to altered family
commitments. He reported that RE has indicated an interest in taking over.
Dennis Lavery also said that he wished to stand down and asked members to
consider taking over the Chair?
GK reported that he was to run a ‘Water or Wine’ stall at the Johnstone Gala
August. Clr McM has promised to provide wine and Morrisons are
The police submitted a report on crime in Johnstone between 14
August which reported that in the Town Centre area there had been a total
of 38 crimes, with 10 detected.
GK asked again whether we could be provided with figures that cover the
whole area within Johnstone’s boundaries. Officers Love and Jenkins said
they would try.
Clr D queried the figure of 11 thefts from business and domestic premises.
The police representatives replied that these had been mostly of lead from
roofs and that there was no specific issue of theft from Johnstone Town centre
Margaret Lavery reported the loss of downpipes at the Campbell Street
Railway Bridge – for the sixth time. On this occasion Johnstone High pupils
had been see removing them at 8.30am. – the resultant waterflow forces
pedestrians, including the many elderly attending the nearby centre,
dangerously out onto the road.
RE noted that speeding in Quarrelton Road and Kilbarchan Road had been a
lot worse in the last 6 weeks. The police replied that they do target areas
where complaints arise but that July’s Commonwealth Games period had
Elizabeth Cosgrove reported that the traffic in Johnstone High Street was
getting worse due to the volume of traffic combined with the seemingly
unsupervised parking of cars.
7. Sub-Group Reports
Town Hall Focus Group
Valerie Reilly reported that there had as yet been no further meetings but that
one was scheduled for 21
August. A report will be submitted at the next JCC
DL asked whether newspaper reports about the new TH being handed over to
a Trust were true?
Clr McM replied that RC was currently exploring this as a possibility. DL
expressed the opinion that the TH should be kept in public ownership as he
felt that there was not enough scrutiny of the current Renfrewshire Leisure
Trust – there seemed to be no public accountability.
Clr McM replied that nothing had yet been agreed. He said that RLT has been
fairly successful and that their accounts are made public on their website.
He added that putting services into Trusts saves the Council, and therefore
the Council Tax payers, money.
Clr D added that some Clrs had voted against the Trust consultation.
Clr Bibby noted that the small number of representatives on the Trust meant
that the Clrs are cut out of the control. He agreed that the JCC Chair had
made a good point.
From the floor ML asked why there were no ordinary members of the public
on the Trust board and added that the TH should not just be handed over to
RLT as it stands.
GK noted an application for a rear extension to Rennies Bar, 12 Collier Street,
to form a restaurant and beer garden.
Danny McKay noted that the area in question is covered in Japanese
Councillor Hood noted that there is a new chemical on the market which kills
the plant in 18 months rather than 3 years – and that all council land infested
GK also reported an application at the Silver Tassie, 1 Overton Crescent, for
part change of use to hot food takeaway.
Clr McM noted that this will be in the part of the pub that formerly operated as
GK additionally noted the ‘Disabled Persons Parking Places Order’ and
explained that is was designed to lead to a more formalised policy for the
location of such spaces and would hopefully lead to their removal when they
were no longer required.
RE noted that Sgt Mack was difficult to get hold of and that therefore he had
no updates on the speeding situation.
Additionally he had heard nothing regarding our suggestion for a one-way
system through the town.
GK thought we should perhaps resubmit this idea.
RE asked if there had been any results on the parking problems.
GK replied that a report had been prepared for the LAC meeting on 4
September, at which WD has agreed to deputise for him, and therefore a
report could be made to the October meeting.
Linda Flint noted various particular problems around the town. These
The drains at Miller Street which had been blocked by Parducci’s discarded
ice cream. This has now backed up to two drains further up the street.
The area outside the Minerva Works and the Amenity Site is a disgrace –
could the Clrs look into this?
Trolleys are being discarded all along the cycle track now that Morrisons are
no longer using pound coins to unlock them. The advice is to phone the store
and they will come to collect. GK added that anyone phoning should ask to
speak to Sophie, the store’s Community Champion. LF noted that she had
contacted Morrisons to ask why they had done this and they had replied that a
successful pilot scheme elsewhere had now been extended and that they had
found that it increases trade.
Boat Road – the roadside shrubbery is now so overgrown that schoolchildren
and others walking the route are forced out onto the road.
DL mentioned the problems of litter outside the Sports Hub – due to lack of
Clr McM replied that members of staff go out to do a litter clear-up every
Play Park & Youth Issues.
GK reported that he had submitted a final return with receipts to RC showing
how the LAC grant funding had been spent.
WD reported that numbers attending the club had fallen due to summer
holidays but were now picking up. They had taken the children to an open-air
concert in Dumfries.
A website had been set up.
A Family Day was planned.
They were going to be fundraising – including the use of football cards in the
Clr McM reported that Renfrewshire would be benefiting from the Glasgow
City Deal due to the investment zone which covering the airport and the river
front. He added that while Renfrewshire has 10% of the population, the area
is set to benefit from about 27% of this infrastructure investment.
WD asked what was to happen to the painted panels around the TH when
construction work was completed. She further enquired whether equipment on
the Youth Bus was available for borrowing.
Clr McM agreed to check
WD noted that she had been impressed by the amount of summer activities
provided for children this year – except that there appeared to have been
nothing (other than a paid-for passport) for children in the 8 to 9 year range.
Clr McM agreed to investigate.
There being no further business the meeting closed at 8.50pm.
The next meeting will be held at Cochrane Castle Community Centre on
October 2014 at 7.00pm when the AGM will also take place.