Reflections on 9 April NTBCC meeting from Allan Jack

Members were disappointed that Council officials cancelled a planned presentation on the tram proposals at the last moment. A joint presentation by Edinburgh Council for community councils and local councillors is planned instead at which NTBCC will be represented. We will then discuss the proposals and make a submission. We have invited transport officials to honour their original commitment and meet with NTBCC and local residents at some future date. Some members and some residents felt that the tram consultation process lacked credibility and that the public engagement process was flawed and rushed. It was agreed to explore the possibility of liaising with other community councils on the topic. There are two remaining public consultation sessions : Thursday April 12 at Leith Community Education Centre  (3-9pm)  and Saturday 21 April  at  Ocean Terminal (12-5pm).

The police reported that there had been a significant drop in break-ins in the area in March. Counterfeit £20 Royal Bank of Scotland notes were in circulation which are of high quality but lacking the foil strip (security thread). Members of the public are fully  entitled to refuse to accept these.

Vehicle speed checks had been held as requested by NTBCC at previous meetings. Regent Road and York Place had been targeted to some effect. Police Scotland were also open to local residents highlighting areas where speeding is seen as a problem for future checks.

We continue to seek new members. The CC agreed to co-opt Margaret Duffy and to adopt Simon Holledge as an associate member. Local interest groups such as street associations can nominate representatives to be members of the CC and any who wish to do so should contact the Secretary, Judy Conn via the NTBCC website .

The licensing convener welcomed the fact that Edinburgh Licensing Board is holding a workshop on over-provision and, subsequently, hearings to consider the responses received in the initial consultation on licensing policy to which NTBCC made a submission.  Members said there were areas within the NTBCC boundary  which might be considered over-provided with licensed premises.

The agenda item on planning covered the proposed IMPACT Scotland concert hall behind Dundas House in St Andrews Square which was noted to be a dominant structure in a small place. Some members felt the design showed insufficient respect for the surrounding context, others that the exterior finish seemed inappropriate. NTBCC has also made representations recently objecting to proposals at  1-3 Canon St  (Canonmills) and the  development  by Edinburgh Academy backing on to  Perth St/Henderson Row which was discussed at the March NTBCC meeting.

We continue to follow developments with regard to the Old Royal High School. Enquiry hearings are expected in September. NTBCC is collaborating with the Cockburn Association and Edinburgh World Heritage. We value the significant role which the Cockburn Association is playing in sustaining constructive opposition to the proposed development. We would encourage anyone who wishes to support them to become a member of the Cockburn Association and/or offer financial support for their campaign – more details regarding fundraising expected from the Cockburn in the coming weeks.

Full minutes of the meeting will be available in the coming weeks on the NTBCC website.