Saturday, 23 May 2015

Summer season at Kelvingrove Bandstand

This week, I heard that the Kelvingrove bandstand and amphitheatre is opening up to the public on Saturdays. 

Today, I went to find out if the gates were unlocked. Thankfully, I was able to walk in and admire the restored outdoor venue.

Open gates to the bandstand and amphitheatre.

There is going to be Saturday opening, in addition to Wednesdays, over the Summer months. The Glasgow Building Preservation Trust is employing a Heritage and Development Officer for Kelvingrove Bandstand and Amphitheatre. If you would like to perform at the bandstand this Summer Season, please email  Include information on what sort of performance, length of performance (roughly), number of people involved, contact details, preferred dates (if any). They are offering slots to a maximum of 45 minutes.

Useful link:

Researching everyday help and support

On 19th May, I attended a seminar to launch research supported by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. It is entitled "Liveable Lives: Understanding everyday help and support in Glasgow" and is a study of experience of everyday help and support of people living in three diverse areas in and around Glasgow - Maryhill, Bearsden and Hillhead.

Summary sheet with list of the key findings.

In the reference to Hillhead, the comments mention that "the student community was often experienced as highly cohesive and supportive". The publication details a series of key points which include "acts and relationships of everyday help and support needed attention, maintenance and repair in their own right."

Useful link:

Supporting local businesses in Hyndland

In the last few weeks, Glasgow City Council has consulted on a Traffic Regulation Order for the the Hyndland Road / Novar Drive Loading Restriction. The proposal is to introduce:-

  •  No Waiting, Monday to Saturday, 7:00am to 8:30pm; No Loading, Monday to Saturday, 7:00am to 8:30pm except goods vehicles; on west side of Hyndland Road, north of Novar Drive.
  •  Designated parking space for use by blue badge holders only on the east side of Hyndland Road north of Kingsborough Gardens.

I am submitting an objection to the above proposal for the following reasons:-

a)    Negative impact of the Loading Bay on existing small businesses

The proposed "Loading Bay" at the Little Hyndland Shops would occupy an unacceptable area of the available parking space for seven existing retail units.  This parking space is already being diminished by the adjacent Pedestrian Crossing.  The proposal would have a negative impact on the turnover of customers to existing businesses. It would lead to drop in customers to existing businesses as their loyal customer base are less able to find a parking space and also, passing trade will not be able to stop due to lack of packing facilities.  The proposal cannot be justified on the basis that it will have a damaging impact on the turnover of existing small businesses operating within the Hyndland area.

b)    Lack of supermarket development at 8, Novar Drive

The specific requirement for this Loading Bay is to provide loading facility for a Supermarket at 8 Novar Drive, which was granted Planning Permission in September 2014. The granting of this Loading Bay is required as a "Condition of Consent”. It should be recognised that if this Loading Bay TRO be agreed, it should only be implemented if and when plans for the construction of the supermarket on the site at 8 Novar Drive are implemented. There is no necessity for the Loading Bay to be installed if the 8 Novar Drive Supermarket never comes to pass.  This is actually a very likely scenario.

There is a lack of evidence of local demand for this additional 454 sq.m. of Retail Space at 8 Novar Drive. This plan could create a retail space of 374 sq.m. plus another 80 sq.m. if the Class 2 space was also converted to Retail. This exceeds that of all 7 existing “Little Hyndland” shops on Hyndland Road. Please note the details of the Planning Consent Reference Number 13/00709/DC, 8 Novar Drive, granted in September 2014:

"The completion of a satisfactory Agreement in terms of Section 75 of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 is a pre-requisite to the issue of planning permission by the Planning Authority.

01. Prior to implementation of this permission, the applicant should contact Development and Regeneration Services (Transport) at an early stage in respect of legislation administered by that Service which is likely to have implications for this development.    02. The applicant should liaise with Scott Downie of LES (Contact 0141 287 9351) to amend the TRO if required. LES will promote the Order (with timescales up to 12 months) with costs associated with amending/promoting the Order recharged to the applicant.

Servicing of the premises shall be restricted to the following days and hours: Monday to Saturday only, 7:00 am until 8.30 pm. For the avoidance of doubt no deliveries shall be allowed on a Sunday. Reason:  To protect local residents from exposure to noise at unsocial hours.

The consent will be conditioned to mitigate noise and disturbance to residents, and the deliveries will be managed through a goods vehicle loading restriction, which will be part of the new Traffic Regulation Order which LES are pursuing separately. The
loading restriction which is planned is considered an appropriate mitigation measure to preserve the amenity of the surrounding residential area.

 The consent is conditioned to ensure that the applicant will enter into a Section 75 Agreement with Glasgow City Council to address the transportation issues. The Section 75 will be the subject of a Traffic Regulation Order to ensure the use cannot commence until the T.R.O. is confirmed and the service bay provided."

c)    Road Safety Issues
The proposal is located in close proximity to a pedestrian crossing, raising concerns about the safety of pedestrians. Large lorries and vans at the loading bay would obscure sight lines to the road and pavement. There are a high number of elderly residents in this area and large numbers of children attending schools in Hyndland, Cleveden and Dowanhill many of whom rely on this pedestrian crossing. There is an increase in the risk of accidents or injury associated with lorries' use of the loading bay.

d)    Negative impact on the residential amenity

The site is located within a residential area with a high density population which would experience disturbance from deliveries, potentially outwith normal working hours. The proposal will increase lorry traffic, and deliveries which will cause an unacceptable levels of noise within a quiet residential area.

Friday, 15 May 2015

Glasgow's Women's 10k in 2015

This Sunday, I will be joining thousands of women taking part in the 10K through Glasgow's Southside. 

I hope that it will be a really memorable day for the women taking part, supported by their families and friends. Many charities rely on the funds that are raised.

Useful links:

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Make the seats match the votes

The result of the 2015 General Election on 7th May has shown that our voting system is broken beyond repair. Once again our voting system has been shown to fail voters. The new UK Parliament does not match the way we voted. This is due to our voting system being designed for an era when almost everyone voted for the two big parties. However, people have changed and they support a wider range of parties than ever before. 

It’s time the system caught up with how we actually vote. Calls have been made for a fairer, more proportional voting system which ensures that seats in UK Parliament match the way people vote. This would make sure people’s choices were fairly reflected in the UK Parliament, and would allow everyone to vote for someone they believe in. Let's hope that the party leaders make voting reform a reality in this UK Parliament. 

Please read about the need for a system of proportional representation at the UK Parliament at :

Sunday, 3 May 2015

May Day Celebrations in Glasgow

Today, I joined the march and rally organised by the Glasgow Trades Council to celebrate International Worker's Day. Young workers led the march to highlight a campaign supported by the Scottish Trade Union Congress, called "Better Than Zero", run for young people by young people to tackle insecure and low paid work.

Information leaflet for "Better Than Zero"

At this year's rally, the main speaker was Seaumas Milne, a Guardian comment writer and author of "The Enemy Within". There was a video footage from the USA's fast food movement and sharing of ideas about the development of a similar campaign in Scotland.

Gordon Maloney spoke about the Living Rent Campaign and a new bill proposed by the Scottish Government to reform the private rented sector. He highlighted the need to support calls for rent controls, as well as protection for tenants from eviction. There is evidence that rents are spiraling out of control. Private sector tenants are being forced in to poverty and unaffordable house prices are making life intolerable. 

Details of Living Rent Campaign at

A representative from the Glasgow Girls shared their experience of campaigning for asylum seeker rights and ongoing demand for the closure of Dungavel Detention Centre. 

Roza Salih speaking on behalf of the Glasgow Girls.

Calls were made to support and provide solidarity with the people of Kobani and the Kurdish community. They are seeking to develop support to establish an independent country of Kurdistan.

There was a solidarity appeal and collection by Glasgow City Council's Homeless Case Workers who have been on indefinite strike since 30th March 2015. Calls were made for negotiations to resume urgently, as the indefinite strike action is a source of concern in an already difficult situation for people affected by homelessness in the city, particularly children, refugees and others with complex support needs. Some 70 Unison members took strike action over their claim that their pay has been unfairly graded compared to other frontline workers. 

Glasgow City Council's Homeless Case Workers 
have rallied at the City Chambers.

So far, the council has refused to negotiate, saying that the grading was appropriate. All sides should seek to negotiate and agree a process to resolve the issues that have led to this crisis.

Saturday, 2 May 2015

White lines painted to support sports activity

In the last week, there are new white lines painted to create a running track on a football pitch at Braid Square, within Woodside. This is possible with support from staff at Education Services and Land & Environmental Services.

White lines painted on the red blaes pitch.

This is a pitch that is needed by local schools to provide and develop an outdoor sports programme for pupils. There are proposals being developed, with my assistance, to ensure that investment is provided to maintain the pitch and exercise space.

Balustrade fixed at Woodside Library

This week, the restoration works on the balustrade at Woodside Library, on St. Georges Road were completed. A section of the balustrade had been missing and this work was undertaken after a series of meetings with staff from Glasgow Life and local residents who were concerned about the poor maintenance of the library.

New balustrade at Woodside Library.

This building is a significant landmark in the area, as it is A listed and is one of five libraries in Glasgow established with the support of Andrew Carnegie.

There are plans to celebrate this building's history during Doors Open Day, on the 19th/20th of September 2015.