Letters to the Editor - September 28, 2011

william patrick library'photo emma mitchell'14/3/11
william patrick library'photo emma mitchell'14/3/11

READERS have their say on the issues which matter...

Concerns over sports facilities

I WAS pleased to see the letter in last week’s Herald from my old friend Gerry Marley about sporting facilities, because we at Lenzie Youth Club also have a gripe with the council.

Our club covers 12 age groups, from under-5s to under-16s, and we hold the SFA Quality Mark.

Our older 11-a-side teams use Lenzie Academy’s Boghead Playing Fields, but despite the sterling work done by Billy Kerr and his greenspace team, because of broken drains they flood easily.

This has gone on for some time, but we were told of the fabulous 3g astro pitches which would be available for community use at both St Ninian’s and Kirkintilloch High School, and sure enough we now have them . . . however, despite repeated requests to local councillors and MP they are not open on Sundays when our local youth leagues play.

So we have games off because of flooding grass pitches and astro pitches with great facilities lying empty – surely this does not make sense.

The hire of these pitches would also generate income for our cash-strapped council as there are also indoor facilities there which could also be used for other sports.

We as a club have made loads of suggestions about these facilities, which would also reduce costs to the local youth clubs, but unfortunately no-one in authority is prepared to change things.

Ian Stevenson,

Lenzie Youth Club.

Support for sandwich board ban

WE, East Dunbartonshire Access Panel (EDAP), being the collective voice of people with disabilities and long term conditions, hosted and supported by East Dunbartonshire Council for Voluntary Services (CVS), funded by the Scottish Disability Equality Forum (SDEF) and East Dunbartonshire Council (EDC), write in response to various articles and letters in the previous week’s Herald that refer to the ban that EDC has made in the case of retailers using sandwich boards (A frame boards).

EDAP has an ongoing strategic working partnership with the council to assist them to meet their statutory duty under the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) and Disability Equality Duty (DED).

EDAP conducted a pavement survey in Kirkintilloch earlier this year and presented an evidence-based representation on the barriers to people with disabilities to East Dunbartonshire Council.

Those who conducted the survey were all physically disabled, some were totally blind and others were wheelchair users.

This evidence prompted EDC to put a very proactive zero tolerance policy in place, vastly reducing the council’s and shopkeepers’ potential exposure to litigation by failing to give due regard to a person’s disability.

People who describe these measures taken by East Dunbartonshire Council as a “Stalinist, anti-business policy” obviously have little or no knowledge/lived life experience or understanding of the barriers that people with disabilities face in their every day lives, trying to negotiate the pavements in Kirkintilloch, while being unable to see what’s in front of them, or manoeuvre a wheelchair past the many hazards which exist.

EDAP applauds the council for taking this step to make our communities accessible to all.

EDAP supports local businesses and appreciates that times have been very difficult for the shop owners in Kirkintilloch. However, if A frame boards are removed from our pavements then the many disabled people who live within Kirkintilloch and the surrounding area will feel safer and will be more inclined to visit our town and shop locally.

Disabled people are parents, children, brothers, sisters, partners, and friends. They are your neighbours and colleagues and maybe you, now or sometime in the future.

The panel believes that everyone has the right to be able to use all community facilities, shops, offices etc.

Tom Friel (chairman), Ian Cooper (vice-chairman),

Ron Murray (treasurer).

EDAP

Fun day success

THE recent Woodhill Family Fun Day bounced back from the rain and hail that spoiled the community’s annual day out in Etive Park last year.

Such was the impact of the weather upon our fundraising efforts that we have had to curtail many of the initiatives we had planned for the past 12 months.

Many voluntary groups might never have recovered from such a knock.

But, I am glad to say, the Woodhill Residents’ Group are made of sterner stuff!

This year’s Family Fun Day was a great success thanks to sunshine and hard work.

And not just the hard work of committee members delivering publicity leaflets to every house in Woodhill, but the help of other local organisations and companies.

Once again Mr Rafique at Four Square Newsagents stepped in to sponsor the day, the fourth year he has done so.

East Dunbartonshire Council’s grants advisory committee provided funding, which allowed us to bring a mobile climbing wall to the event - something that proved very popular with local children.

Other local companies from Exit Hairdressing to Huntershill Village provided support, and the free pizzas handed out by Dominos went down a treat.

I must also offer a big thank you to the young people of Bishopbriggs Academy, who turned out to help run the event, supervising bouncy castles, painting hair and packing away afterwards.

Not only was their presence vital for the success of the Woodhill Family Fun Day, but more importantly they attended the group’s regular monthly meeting the following evening - adding new and welcome perspectives to initiatives planned for Woodhill.

Can I invite your readers to suggest ways in which we can make Woodhill an even better place to live by contacting us via www.woodhillresidentsgroup.org.uk

Donald Macdonald,

Chairman, Woodhill Residents’ Group.

Top class service

WHAT a splendid service the William Patrick Library, in Kirkintilloch, provides.

On September 1, I requested photographs and information about Twechar in the 1940s.

I explained that I had only two days in the area and had an appointment elsewhere in 45 minutes and asked if they could have the material available for me in three hours time?

Well, they did. So I have been able to take back to Australia fabulous material for ‘These Are Your Roots’, which I am writing for all my Australian grandchildren.

No library in the world could have been more helpful.

Dorothy Baird

(nee Shaw),

Adelaide, Australia.