Sunday, 21 July 2013

Car accident risk highlighted

During a walkabout on Friday 19th July, I was made aware of the traffic problems in Linfern Road and Sydenham Road, Dowanhill due to through traffic. What you would expect to be a quiet residential street is a well known, short cut between Great Western Road and Hyndland Road.

View of the junction of Linfern Road and Sydenham Road

The volume of traffic on this route has steadily increased over the last 5 years. I have been made aware of a recent car accident which resulted in damage to a wall at the junction of Linfern Road and Sydenhman Road. The lack of a "give way" sign or white lines to ensure cars stop at this junction is a serious road safety concern for residents.

A request for improvements to signage and road markings in this area is being made to council officials.

Update on 8th October 2013:

Please note that council officials have introduced white lines at the junction in response to my request on behalf of residents. The stone wall has been repaired. This is very much appreciated.

Demolition at Colebrooke Street

This week, I have observed the demolition of the tenement blocks at Colebrooke Street, in Kelvinbridge. This is the end of an era for the people living in this neighbourhood. The site will be cleared to make way for a new Science building for Glasgow Academy. 

 View of Colebrooke Street and the tenement due for demolition.

View of the demolition underway.

Many of the neighbours are concerned about the disruption to their daily lives during the demolition process. The dust and noise has caused a major headache for them.

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Guide to Independent Businesses

This weekend, I attended the Green Party Councillors Conference in Birmingham. It was a chance to explore a new city, the "Venice of the North", and find out about the shopping experience on offer.  

                                                         Award winning Cafe Blend

During my visit, I took in a few coffee shops including a recommended cafe, Cafe Blend, with lots of coffees and teas to try. At their information display, I found a brochure promoting independent businesses in the city centre. There is an inspiring array of places to enjoy.

Piccadilly Arcade has hand-painted ceilings and many independent shops

Returning the Glasgow, I am hoping a similar guide to Independent Businesses can be considered. It makes sense to boost the profile of local, independent traders and promote a wide range of excellent places to explore across our city.

Useful link:

Cafe Blend -

Your Guide to Birmingham's Independents -

Monday, 8 July 2013

Call for Neighbourhood Improvement Volunteers

There are a large number of residents who are taking action to clean up back lanes and backcourts. However, there is still more to be done to tackle to problems of litter and flytipping. In the last week, I have reported numerous bits of furniture for uplift by Cleansing.

Flytipping of sofas and chairs

There are a back lanes in a poor condition with large quantities of furnishings and household refuse dumped. Residents are encouraged to get involved in clean ups and take action to prevent cleansing problems occurring.

 A back lane in need of a clean up.

I am supporting various groups who want to clean up their neighbourhood, backcourt or back lane. To find out about becoming a neighbourhood improvement volunteer go to the website of Glasgow Community Safety Services. Look out for posters advertising clean ups and visit local community gardens where you can also learn about local environmental activities.

Useful link:

30 mile cycling trip to Helensburgh

Yesterday, I completed a 30 mile cycling trip from Glasgow to Helensburgh. This was in support of efforts to build a new visitors’ centre and communal space at the Faslane Peace Camp.

The starting point of the cycling trip at the Riverside Museum.

Established since 12 June 1982, the Faslane Peace Camp is the longest permanent peace camp in the world. It has been the base for protests against the Britain's nuclear deterrent for over 31 years, through the use of non-violent direct action, civil disobedience and monitoring the movements of submarines from Faslane Naval Base. 

 Entrance to Faslane Peace Camp, with my bike parked.

The new building will be a sustainable straw-bale/earth building with rainwater-harvesting, turf roof, bottle walls, thermal mass heater. It will be made from a mix of ecological, sustainable and long-term usable recycled materials.

Cleared site for the new building.

The new facilities are needed to help anti-nuclear campaigning, but also provide training and workshops for sustainable low-impact living. Over the Summer months, supporters are encouraged to visit the camp to help out with day to day activities or take part in planned events.

Useful link:

Monday, 1 July 2013

Open Day at Coachhouse Trust

On Saturday 29th June, I went along to find out what is happening in the gardens and training spaces of Coachouse Trust, located on Belmont Lane, near Kelvinbridge. I enjoyed looking around the market garden and art studios.

 Market Garden selling plants, seasonal veg, and hanging baskets.

Poppy at the viewpoint overlooking the River Kelvin

Sculpture Garden.

The Coachhouse Trust is providing courses in Horticulture, Computing, Arts and Media, and woodworking. It also offers gardening and landscaping services, and is supporting local community gardening projects in partnership with local housing associations.

Useful link:


You are Beautiful Art Exhibition and Book Launch

On Friday 28th June, I went along to view the artworks on display in the cafe of the Charlie Reid Centre at 19 Elmbank Street.

Members have worked hard together with the support of Art Tutors to produce an impressive collection of paintings and photos. In addition, poems have been published in a unique book entitled "You are Beautiful".

Useful links:

Charlie Reid Centre -

Stand Up for Dignity

On Saturday 29th June, I took part in the UK wide day of action to highlight the issue of asylum seeker destitution. At a gathering in St. Enoch's Square, I spoke with reference to the 2007 findings of House of Commons Joint Committee on Human Rights which stated, "the UK Government is practising a deliberate policy of destitution and a deliberate use of inhumane treatment against asylum seekers".

This UK Government policy is unacceptable and falls below the requirements of common law of humanity and international human rights law. Currently about 300 asylum seekers are homeless and destitute in Glasgow. They face loss of their dignity and basic rights including access to money for food, clean water, clothing and accommodation. Destitute asylum seekers are forced to sleep rough on the streets and rely on charity handouts. 

Asylum seeker supporters in Glasgow rallied as part of a national show of outrage over the number of people living in destitution as a result of Government policies. The day of action called for a change in policy to allow people seeking sanctuary to support themselves by removing the ban on working. Supporters are angry that people whose asylum applications have been turned down but who can’t return home are left without any form of financial support.