Thousands sign petition against the Bears Way

Council HQ Aileen McIntyre presenting petition to Rhondda Geekie about A81.
Council HQ Aileen McIntyre presenting petition to Rhondda Geekie about A81.

A woman has gathered over 2,000 signatures for a petition which asks the council to put Milngavie Road back to the way it was before the ‘Bears Way’ scheme.

Aileen MacIntyre, from Bearsden, handed her Change.org petition containing 2,560 signatures (2,140 online and 420 on paper) to East Dunbartonshire Council on Monday this week.

However she is angry that a report about the petition, which was presented to the council’s development and regeneration committee on May 17, failed to include the correct number of signatures. It stated that 2053 signatures had been gathered.

She says the report also falsely claims that she had presented the petition to the council - but she hadn’t yet.

Mrs MacIntyre said: “I’m very disappointed and shocked that the council has pre-empted my presentation of the petition. Their report is at least 500 signatures short.

“There’s still a real strength of feeling about the Bears Way locally.

“Residents are worried there will be accidents - they think it’s very dangerous, especially at access points with the road.”

Some comments on the petition include Helen Faulds from Bearsden saying: “It is an extremely dangerous road.

“Does it take someone to be killed before something is done?”

Philip Cuthill said: “It’s an accident waiting to happen.”

Cate Mcewan said: “The cycle path and new road lay out has proven to be ill thought out, the council have repeatedly refused to listen to genuine concerns from residents.

“I have seen more near misses than ever before in this road.

“A total shambles and they should stand up and admit they’ve messed up rather than pushing ahead with even more.”

Independent councillor Duncan Cumming tried to get the council to scrap the recent report until they got updated figures. He also says he did not receive a copy of the petition from the chief executive and so he did not get the opportunity to request for it to be brought forwardto a full council meeting.

Councillor Alan Moir, convener of development and regeneration, said: “The petition was initially submitted on February 27 and, as it had more than 500 signatories, was received by officers.

“Elected members in Bearsden and Milngavie were aware of it. Given the cross-ward nature of the development, officers did not directly contact members from one ward area, a report on the petition was prepared instead for the D & R committee for consideration by committee and awareness of all members.

“In terms of petitioners, the number given in the committee report - 2053 - was accurate when the report was drafted. That has since increased, which was acknowledged by the committee during consideration of the report and will be included in the minutes of the meeting.

“The petition - and the final number of signatories - will form part of a further detailed report on the A81 Bears Way project which will be considered at a future meeting.”