Fairlie Community Council – Monday 02/11/2020, h. 07:30pm, Zoom meeting
Attending: FCC: Rita Holmes (Chair); Marco Piva (minutes taker); Alan Holden; David Telford; David Nairn NAC: Cllr. Tom Marshall; Cllr. Alan Hill; Cllr. Ian Murdoch 4 MoP
Approval of October minutes: proposed by DT, seconded by DN NA
Councillors’ update: the Cllrs elected to comment on the individual points on the agenda
1: A78 road closure Pasting email communication from Amey: Essential maintenance on the A78 between Kelburn Country Park and Fairlie North will commence from 8pm on Thursday 5 thNovember until Monday 9 thNovember 2020. The scheme, with a value of £132,000, will benefit road users by improving the condition of the carriageway and reducing the need for more extensive maintenance in future. This work requires an initial daytime lane closure on the A78 from 9.30am to 4pm, using a temporary traffic light system. The rest of the work will be completed overnight between 8pm and 6am, each night from 6 th November until the morning of the 9 thNovember. A full weekend closure will be in place with a signed diversion will be in operation. Northbound traffic on the A78 will be directed to leave at the A78 Chapel Hill Roundabout to B780 Dalry Road to B784 Dalry Junction. From here vehicles will travel on the B784 to the A760 Largs Road and re-join the A78 at Haylie Brae. Southbound traffic will follow the same diversion in the opposite direction. IM was on a meeting re roads a few weeks ago and this closure was not mentioned in that occasion. IM protested the lack of notice concerning this closure, insisting for having longer and clearer notice re future works. Also went on record saying that he considers that there is no point in resurfacing the road without addressing the well-known drainage issues
2: Remembrance Sunday NAC sent a note on 31/10 detailing restrictions and guidelines; AHold confirms that the Kirk had already planned accordingly
3: Accumulation of fallen leaves TM confirms that NAC is in charge, the road cleaning vehicle will be sent again (it has already been in Fairlie) under a 4-week programme that has already been approved and is in place. John Lockhart used to be in charge of the Countess steps; TM to contact him to see if he still is in charge and, if not, who is IM the flooding situation at the petrol station and across the road is getting worse: the drains are so clogged that they overflow with every rain, even when the Keppen Burn does not overtop. IM personally took care of having the drains cleaned, but the silt deposit is excessive; likely to be caused by Dawn Homes construction. He will find out who at NAC is in charge of monitoring the situation and bring the issue to their attention DT noted that it was a planning condition of the Dawn housing that the surface water flooding on the A78 would be dealt with as a planning gain; this has clearly not happened IM NAC and Transport Scotland have funded their part of the work, waiting for ScotRail to contribute their third part; no timeframe specified. TM confirms, will contact the individual in charge for updates 4: PeelPorts community liaison group Pasting notes shared by RH, who was present at the meeting This took place by Microsoft Teams on 27/10/20 with Warren Marshall the Liaison Officer, James McSporran the new Ports Director for the Clyde area and Lewis McIntyre Projects Strategy manager. Also present were Rita Holmes and David Nairn for FCC, Graham Wallace for Cumbrae CC, John Lamb for West Kilbride CC and Ian Dippie for Largs CC. NA Councillors Barr and Murdoch were also in attendance. WM was appointed interim chair. The May 2020 minutes were approved . Items discussed were Peel Ports Management changes and there was an update on proposed clean up at the site, with no specific dates for removal of the conveyor over the A78, or the removal of the rubber, coal and ore. FCC submitted written questions which will be answered in writing within 3 weeks of the meeting. We requested in writing that the meetings be audio recorded for accuracy. One proposal of note, that we were told will go to planning is a “green project”… not wind, not solar, not biomass. We were taken aback that the “green project” was waste incineration for energy production… no flu or chimney… no gaseous emissions… we were told there are plants like this, one in Germany and one in South Africa. We asked about waste coming in but got no information on this. If built it is likely to be on the stockyard not the Marine yard. We were told that there is competition from other places to berth the cruise liners, so unlikely they will come to Hunterston. PP spoke about aquaculture project and DN reminded if it is to be dependent on fish farms then there is a problem as we have too many already damaging the environment. David N spoke about the SSSI and access to it… We reminded PP that we are on one of the most beautiful waterways in Northern Europe and want it protected from inappropriate developments. The next liaison meeting is in April 2021. We will put the PP answers to our questions on the FCC website. The meeting was not recorded, PP were adamant in refusing this; TM reminded that outside meeting with the presence of NAC Cllrs never are recorded for public diffusion NACllrs have no further info re “green project” besides what mentioned at meeting. A motion was raised (by Cllr Alex Gallagher) at the latest full NAC meeting, but no proposal was filed. The main concern behind the motion was the loss of jobs after Hunterston closure. TM is not aware of any waste burning projects being close to be filed with planning; IM stated that, at the meeting, it was mentioned as something they are “looking at”, so we may have news in some months DN: aquaculture was mentioned (using recycled water); Crown Estate released a tender re fish and shellfish farming in the area; DN will follow up on this DT: CessCon Decom received a £100k loan from Business Loans Scotland to facilitate their operations at Hunterston – really an unsecured loan from the taxpayer. It is unclear what the status of this loan is (including whether the money has been paid to CessCon or not), as CessCon Decom are no longer involved at Hunterston IM: CessCon Decom were awarded a substantial loan from Ayrshire Growth Fund; unknown if they have received the money IM reminds that all renewable/green energy proposals have been initially brought forward by the late Mr. Ron Gilchrist.
5: Rigghill wind turbines Pasting notes shared by RH Burcote hosted an exhibition event in light of their Supplementary Environmental Information requested by statutory consultees and necessary as the original submissions did not meet requirements from SEPA, Roads, SNH, HES or NAC Environmental Health Noise. The Skelmorlie site is particularly scenic and has Roman remains as well as wildlife that needs protection. The peat is also at risk and NAC noise officer has already said that noise will be a problem for some residents. FCC is very concerned that output of turbine proposed is unprecedented on land (149.9M to blade tip and 4.2MW). Burcote deny there is any problem with ILFN. Burcote have stated in their latest flyer that the application will be determined the last quarter of 2020… this date, according to NAC planning is unlikely. We will see if Burcote appeal this on grounds of non determination. If they do then it does them no favours as their poor application has delayed this. FCC objected to the original plan and will submit a further objection as the plan is now to use the A78 through Fairlie which is unsuitable for such large heavy loads. We also do not want to see the destruction of the Routenburn Road. Our main concern is on health grounds. The planning app is expected in the 4 th quarter of 2020. TM: it’s very unlikely, first quarter of 2021 more likely. Also unlikely an appeal to ScotGov for non-determination, as they risk a rejection IM is strongly opposed, has applied to speak at Planning Comm when app is filed; so has Skelmorlie CC. TM there have been over 200 objections, speakers will be organised after the app is filed and the meeting is scheduled WKCC has already opposed the transit of heavy loads (over 100 expected) through WK MoP: Burcote are heavily in debt (around £8.2mill, a 2-pers company)
6: Hunterston site stakeholders group Pasting notes shared by RH The next SSG is Thursday, 3rd December by Zoom. Anybody who wishes to attend as a member of the public can request this from the Magnox secretariat. Written questions should be submitted in advance of the meeting, as the meeting is likely to be kept to two hours maximum. Currently the NDA is consulting on its draft Strategy 4 and the SSG will be submitting views on it by 6th November deadline. Anybody can submit comments on it. There have been 4 confirmed cases of Covid-19 at HNA. The Magnox socio economic fund has had few applications, so do apply if your group needs financial help with a project. Hunterston B has both reactors operating. R3 is expected to come offline in January 2021 and part of the graphite core will be checked for further cracking. EDF NGL plans to ask for a further 6 months of operation and R3 will and R4 will cease energy generation by January 2022. Then defuelling will start and take about 3 years after which decommissioning will commence. This CC through the SSG will continue to seek the best environmental outcomes possible regarding the decommissioning of HNB. We will also insist that only Hunterston radioactive wastes are treated and stored on site. NDA would like Torness waste to come to the Hunterston store. FCC has made it clear to NDA, that we do not want waste from outwith the Hunterston site. There is also a wish to dispose of reactor graphite near site, near surface and we opposed this as an unproven effective and safe method due to the Carbon 14 content in the reactor graphite. The Scottish government has told NDA that SG will not be the first to implement on site disposal of reactor graphite. We will publish the SSG Response on the Fairlie CC website in due course. Using Hunterston for graphite storing and for waste from other stations had already been discussed, objections had been filed and it had been taken off the table; it is now being discussed again. Objections will be filed again. There have been mentions of the statement that an operational Hunterston would be necessary to restart the power grid in Scotland in case of a complete shutdown (“black start”). AHold quotes official reports that deny this (hydro power is more than sufficient) IM states he has been ridiculed at Council level and by Mr Drew Cochrane on his column on the Largs & Millport News for questions he asked at SSG, questions that he considered reasonable and to which he received reasonable and clear answers by Magnox; he plans to raise issue at the next SSG; he also made this point at Largs CC, of which Mr Cochrane is a member. RH has also been ridiculed by Mr Cochrane on his column; she asked for apologies, Mr Cochrane replied that she has misinterpreted his words, RH asked again for an apology, none was offered.
7: Dawn Homes MoPs have complained about cutting of the old yew tree to build the new flats (presently under construction) and for the fact that the cliffs will not be visible when entering Fairlie from the north. 18 flats will be built
8: Locality Partnership The next meeting is on Dec 1 st 2020 (Tuesday); FCC are looking for volunteers to participate
9: NA workshop on housing needs There are no data on Fairlie AHill there are no sites to build social housing in Fairlie IM there is a shortage of social housing, but no sites to build it, nor commercial sites
10: New seating on the Mound Probably initiated and paid for by Fairlie Community Trust, that has to be congratulated for the initiative AOB: a) a MoP (not present at meeting) suggested to use the upper tennis court, which is presently unkempt, as a “doggy park” AHill: Fairlie Community Sports Club are in charge of the tennis courts, owned by NAC but not managed by NAC. Small pines are spontaneously growing on upper court (lower court has been recently restored to its function), they will probably be sold as Christmas trees for charity b) MoP: it looks like people have been speeding and running the red light more than before in recent months; wasn’t there a proposal to install a digital speed measurement signal? IM: it has been pointed out that youths often use digital speed measurement signals as “challenges” to speed as much as they can. Police vans are often present at either end of the village or in layby in village centre c) PeelPort have been asked to repaint bridge at the south end of village when they will have road closed to remove the overpass d) Police will be asked to be present or to send a written monthly report from next FCC meeting e) DN re SSSI signage: meeting with SMH was held, discussing what to be written on it (several parties involved). Process is slow but it has been initiated The next FCC meeting is on Monday 7 th of December at 07:30 pm by Zoom (link for MoPs will be provided on request; MoPs present at this meeting and who have already expressed their interest will receive it)