Keep KitKat Fairtrade!

 

Nestle has announced that KitKats will no longer be Fairtrade. 

From October it will stop buying from cocoa and sugar farmers in Cote d’Ivoire, Fiji and Malawi on Fairtrade terms. 

That means taking away around £2 million of annual Fairtrade Premium payments, in the middle of a huge health and economic crisis. 

Farmers will be getting less for their hard work and have less control over how they spend their money.

As a member of Dundee Fairtrade Forum, I strongly believe this cannot be right, especially when Nestle turned a profit of over $10 billion last year. 

Please sign the petition to Nestle’s CEO that we want KitKat to stay Fairtrade at www.change.org/p/ulf-mark-schneider-nestle-global-ceo-keep-kitkat-fairtrade – many thanks!

Getting things done – Blackness Road, Glamis Road, Glamis Drive #dundeewestend

 

Residents recently contacted about an advertising hoarding on the Blackness Road, Glamis Road, Glamis Drive roundabout.

As one resident put it :

“I was very upset this morning at the sight of a bright pink advertising hoarding facing my garden from the Glamis Rd/Blackness Rd Circle.   This erection went up overnight with no notification that it was going to be erected and no opportunity to discuss the issues.   The circle has recently been improved visually with a tree and plants and it is now totally spoilt by the use of the circle for adverts.”

I am all for the council seeking advertising revenue from roundabout sponsorship at locations like the city centre/shopping and business areas but not where it is immediately adjacent to residential housing and asked the City Council’s Head of Planning and Economic Development is this could be removed.

I am pleased to say he has responded positively as follows :

“I can confirm that the signs on the Blackness Road/Glamis Road roundabout will be removed.  I anticipate that the works will be undertaken over the next two weeks.”

Weeds at road edges in the West End – an update #dundeewestend

 

Numerous constituents have contacted me about the extent of weeds at road edges across the West End.    

Whilst appreciating that services have not been as normal through much of 2020 due to the health emergency, I was anxious to see this addressed and am therefore pleased to see this feedback from our local environment manager :

‘As part of our planned maintenance and recovery programme, the 2nd city wide street spraying and commenced from 17th August and should take about 4 to 6 weeks to complete.’

Weekly Road Report – West End Ward #dundeewestend

 

DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL – WEEKLY ROAD REPORT

REPORT FOR WEST END WARD – WEEK COMMENCING MONDAY 24 AUGUST 2020

Riverside Esplanade – off-peak nearside lane closure on Tuesday 25 August for Scottish Water manhole repair.

Forthcoming Roadworks

Blackness Road (at Urquhart Street) – temporary traffic lights on Monday 31 August for Scottish Water investigation work.

Lochee Road (at Polepark Road) – overnight (7.00pm – 2.00am) temporary traffic lights on Monday 31 August for Scottish Water investigation work.

Strawberrybank – closed from Thursday 17 September for 5 working days for wall maintenance works.

Prepay electricity meters – Top-up fund COVID-19

As part of a very helpful fund to assist communities in Dundee through the current challenging circumstances, Hillcrest has advised me :

“I am writing to inform you of the fund we currently have available. This is for any Dundee resident that has a prepay energy supply and costs have gone up due to lockdown.

The £30 voucher is issued within 24 hours by the fuel bank and is by text or email, so a mobile phone number or email is required for the client to get the voucher.”

Any resident with a prepay meter who requires this support can e-mail me at fraser@frasermacpherson.org.uk or phone me at home on 459378 and I will be pleased to make a referral on their behalf.

Blether Tay-Gither – Storytelling in Dundee

 

Blether Tay-Gither is the Dundee Storytelling Group.

From Sheila Kinninmonth, Blether Tay-Gither’s secretary :

“Hope you can join us for our August Blether on Tuesday 25th August via Zoom.  

The Theme is “WATERY TALES.”

Last month’s zoom meeting went very well so we will are having another go.    

Join us to share a story or just to listen!”

For the log-in details to participate, contact Blether Tay-Gither at sheila@blethertaygither.org.uk 

Strawberrybank or Strawberry Bank? #dundeewestend

The recent discussion about the road marking in Strawberrybank resulted in a few enquiries to me from residents about the spelling of Strawberrybank … err … or is that Strawberry Bank?

I must confess that I have always personally spelt the lane as Strawberrybank but ran the query past the City Archivist who advises :

“With regard to the name, Dundee directories, electoral registers, valuation rolls and One Scotland Gazetteer of Scottish addresses have it as ‘Strawberrybank’ whereas it appears as ‘Strawberry Bank’ on Ordnance Survey maps. 

According to Gillian Molloy’s ‘Street Names of Old Dundee’ it was originally called Hampton’s Lane after John Hampton, a mason and gardener who owned property there.

It is referred to as Strawberry Bank in a document dated 1859 and the name is thought to refer to a nearby bank of wild strawberries.”

A Love Letter to Dundee: Joseph McKenzie Photographs 1964-1987

Residents will be aware that I have in the past posted some of the fantastic historic Dundee West End photographs of the late Joseph McKenzie on my West End Facebook page.

A fabulous exhibition of Joseph McKenzie’s photography opens today at McManus Galleries and runs until October 2021.

Further details are available at www.mcmanus.co.uk/exhibitions/a-love-letter-to-dundee 

Further temporary traffic order – Park Place

From the City Council :

THE ROAD TRAFFIC REGULATION ACT 1984 – SECTION 14(1) 

THE DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL AS TRAFFIC AUTHORITY being satisfied that traffic on the road should be prohibited by reason of crane lifting works being carried out HEREBY PROHIBIT the driving of any vehicle in Park Place (between Old Hawkhill and Smalls Lane), Dundee

This notice comes into effect on Friday 21 August 2020 at 16:00hrs until Monday 24 August 2020 at 05:00hrs.

Pedestrian thoroughfare will be maintained.

Two way traffic will be permitted in Smalls Lane for the duration of the works.

Alternative routes are available via Old Hawkhill/Smalls Lane.

For further information contact 433082.

 

Executive Director of City Development

Dundee City Council

Consultation on school catchment areas to re-start

From the City Council’s Director of Children and Families Service to City Councillors :

“Now that schools will reopen in what would be regarded as normal school days from Monday 17th August, it would be our intention to continue the consultation process to its conclusion.

With this in mind we intend to run the consultation for an additional three weeks from 17th August to 4th September. 

This will provide some additional time for stakeholders to respond to the proposals set out in the consultations and it will also permit the completion of any remaining discussions with schools and staff which were postponed.

It would be important to note that prior to lockdown the vast bulk of the consultative meetings had taken place, including public meetings for each proposal where Education Scotland was present.   In fact, at the point of lockdown the consultation had only a few days to run.

Due to ongoing restrictions on large public gatherings, we intend to carry out any engagement in this additional 3 weeks extended period using a digital format.”

Letters were issued yesterday to parents of the affected schools.     The relevant one for the West End is as follows :

TO PARENTS/CARERS OF PUPILS ATTENDING HARRIS ACADEMY, ANCRUM ROAD PRIMARY SCHOOL, BLACKNESS PRIMARY SCHOOL, CAMPERDOWN PRIMARY SCHOOL, TAYVIEW PRIMARY SCHOOL AND VICTORIA PARK PRIMARY SCHOOL

Dear Parent/Carer

LEARNING ESTATE CONSULTATIONS

THE REMOVAL OF INVERGOWRIE PRIMARY SCHOOLS STATUS AS AN ASSOCIATED PRIMARY TO HARRIS ACADEMY FROM AUGUST 2021

THE REVISION OF CATCHMENT AREAS FOR ANCRUM ROAD PRIMARY SCHOOL, BLACKNESS PRIMARY SCHOOL, CAMPERDOWN PRIMARY SCHOOL, TAYVIEW PRIMARY SCHOOL AND VICTORIA PARK PRIMARY SCHOOL FROM AUGUST 2021

You will be aware that the above consultations were due to run from 10th February to 27 March 2020.

Unfortunately, due to the Corona virus pandemic and unprecedented events resulting from COVID 19, all schools in Scotland closed on 20 March 2020 and we were unable to complete the consultation within the timescale originally envisaged.

Schools will not be open again for all pupils in what would be regarded as normal school days until Monday 17 August 2020.    With this in mind we intend to extend the consultation and conclude it on 4 September at 5pm.   This will provide some additional time for stakeholders to respond to the proposals set out in the consultations.

The bulk of the planned consultation activities had been carried out prior to the lockdown of schools on 20 March 2020, including public meetings on both proposals. However, there were two further planned public meetings (one on each proposal), that we could not take forward as a result of the lockdown.

Due to ongoing restrictions on large public gatherings, and in an attempt to best support the conclusion of the consultation process and make sure we obtain the most comprehensive views of the proposals, we intend to carry out these last two events using a digital format. The resources used to support the previous public consultation events will be made available via the consultation web pages to allow stakeholder access to any information or materials they would have received at a public meeting.

Over the three week period, stakeholders will be able to submit questions which will be answered on a weekly basis by senior council officers with both the questions and answers published on the webpage. Please use the following link to the consultation webpage where there are details of the engagement and how to respond. 

A link to the questions and answers section will also be found within this.

www.dundeecity.gov.uk/school-learning-estate-formal-consultation

I hope this letter provides some clarity and a way forward during these challenging times. 

I look forward to continuing to receive your views on the proposals and your engagement in the digital events.

Yours sincerely

PAUL CLANCY

Executive Director of Children and Families Service

Removal of Universal Free TV Licence – some helpful advice

Residents may recall my recent Facebook article on 30th July expressing my concern and disappointment that, from the 1st August, the free TV licence for all over 75s was removed. 

Instead, the BBC has introduced a new scheme that offers free TV licence assistance to only some over 75 households.

Dundee Volunteer and Voluntary Action has given some helpful advice about how to continue to get a free licence :

“To be eligible, the licence holder must be 75 years or older and you, or your partner living at the same address, must be in receipt of Pension Credit.

Pension Credit is one of the benefits that is not well claimed.  

To check if you qualify for this or other benefits such as Housing Benefit, council Tax Reduction or Attendance Allowance you can contact either Welfare Rights at Dundee City Council on 01382 431188 (option 2) or by email on welfare.rights@dundeecity.gov.uk or you call the Age Scotland Helpline on 0800 12 44 222. 

Being in receipt of Pension Credit not only enables you to receive a free TV licence,  but also allows access to other benefits too.

If you had a free TV Licence up to 31 July, you don’t need to do anything just now to stay licenced.

TV Licensing has started to write out to all those affected asking them to pay or apply for a free one.  This may take a couple of months.   They will explain in their letter to you what you need to do to set up your next licence.  These letters should arrive within the next couple of months and the licensing authority has confirmed that currently you continue to be covered.”

The following information is from Age Scotland :

“We want you to be aware of how to spot a scam letter or email regarding this, so please be advised that TV Licensing will only ask you to pay using the following options:

By post using the address:  TV Licensing, PO Box 578, Darlington, DL98 1AN

Online at www.tvl.co.uk/75pay or www.tvl.co.uk/75apply

Over the phone on 0300 790 6151

If you are contacted and asked to pay for your TV licence using a different phone number, a different website or by posting your details to a different address you have been contacted by a scammer.

If you are unsure about anything, you can call TV Licensing on 0300 303 9695 to speak with someone who can help.  

If you have been scammed then we need to know about it, so please report this to Police Scotland on 101.”

Weekly Road Report – West End Ward #dundeewestend

 
DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL – WEEKLY ROAD REPORT

REPORT FOR WEST END WARD – SATURDAY 15 AND SUNDAY 16 AUGUST 2020

Perth Road (at Invergowrie Drive) – temporary traffic lights from Tuesday 11 August for up to one week for gas main repair.

REPORT FOR WEST END WARD – WEEK COMMENCING MONDAY 17 AUGUST 2020

Lochee Road (at Polepark Road) – mini contraflow on Thursday 20 August for BT works.

Forthcoming Roadworks

Riverside Esplanade – off-peak nearside lane closure on Tuesday 25 August for Scottish Water manhole repair.

Strawberrybank – closed from Thursday 17 September for 5 working days for wall maintenance works.

Weekly Road Report – West End Ward #dundeewestend

DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL – WEEKLY ROAD REPORT

Please note that most works are subject to change and late completion due to the restrictive measures in place following UK and Scottish Government advice that only emergency/urgent works and those considered essential should take place during this period.

Forthcoming Road Works

Strawberrybank – closed from Thursday 17 September for 5 working days for wall maintenance works.

Getting things done – Roseangle car park and playpark #dundeewestend

 
I am grateful to the residents who recently highlighted to me the fallen fence between the car park and playpark at Roseangle.
 
I contacted both City Development at the council (responsible for the car park) and Neighbourhood Services (responsible for the playpark) and the Head of Environment responded helpfully as follows :
 
“I can confirm that the local environment manager has picked this issue up and is arranging for an urgent repair.”

Getting things done – Perth Road to Riverside Avenue #dundeewestend

 

 
There’s a path from Perth Road just west of the Ninewells Garage down to Riverside Avenue.
 
It looks OK at the top end but as residents walk down it, it is very overgrown and a resident said at one point it is actually difficult to negotiate your way down it.
 
This path was orginally in private ownership but was upgraded by the council around the time Riverside Nature Park was opened to provide access from Perth Road, so I am hoping there is a maintenance agreement in place so I have asked our local environment manager if the foliage can be cut back.

Lochee Park update #dundeewestend

 
I recently received a request from a constituent in relation to Lochee Park :
 
“I noticed a bunch of new benches and bins in Victoria Park, looks great and I am sure will be appreciated. I wonder if there are plans for some more seating in Lochee Park?”
 
So … I am delighted to welcome the new picnic table and seating at Lochee Park although I have asked our local environment manager if it may be possible to have more provided.
 
He has responded as follows :
 
“The picnic table was provided as part of improvements that are being made to Lochee Park. There was only one picnic bench included in the design but if it proves popular and there is a need for more we can consider this later in the year.”

Update on bus service 4 #dundeewestend

 
Bus service 4 has not operated since the start of the COVID-19 health emergency.
 
As the only bus service covering Windsor Street, Magdalen Yard Road and Roseangle (as well as also passing Pentland and Logie), I asked Xplore Dundee if there is any chance of its resumption in the near future.
 
The company’s Operations Manager has responded as follows :
 
“Unfortunately, at this time, we are unable to operate service 4.   We have had to concentrate all of our resources on mainstream services to allow for physical distancing measures.    I cannot give you any indication of when this will change.”
 
I will, however, update residents further when there is any change to this.

Getting things done – Seabraes #dundeewestend

I received concerns last week about glass strewn around the steps at Seabraes and ivy over the steps – also utility covers that required putting back in place.
 
I raised the glass issue with the council’s Neighbourhood Services to get it cleared up and am also grateful to the Roads Maintenance Partnership which promptly visited the site in relation to the utility covers :

 

 

 

Temporary Traffic Order – Park Place

From the City Council – I am assured that Dundee Dental Hospital is aware of this : 
 
THE ROAD TRAFFIC REGULATION ACT 1984 : SECTION 14(1)
 
THE DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL AS TRAFFIC AUTHORITY being satisfied that traffic on the road should be prohibited by reason of crane lifting works being carried out HEREBY PROHIBIT the driving of any vehicle in Park Place (between Old Hawkhill and Smalls Lane), Dundee
 
This notice comes into effect on Saturday 1 August 2020 for 3 days.
 
Pedestrian thoroughfare will be maintained.
 
Two way traffic will be permitted in Smalls Lane for the duration of the works.
 
Alternative routes are available via Old Hawkhill/Smalls Lane.

For further information contact 433082.
 
Executive Director of City Development
Dundee City Council

Lighting at the Kelso Steps #dundeewestend

 
I recently wrote to the City Council’s Street Lighting Partnership Manager as follows :
 
“A resident has said he finds the lighting as he walks up the above steps is not adequate.      
The resident appreciates that even if it is agreed it needs improved, work like this will not be possible until we return to more normal times but I did promise to raise his query and would appreciate your feedback.”
 
I have had helpful feedback as follows :
 
“We’ve had a look at this and we agree that there needs to be a revision of the lighting provision at the steps here. 
 
I will add it to our (very) long list of works  … I give you my assurance that it will remain on the list until such times as it can be done and will not be forgotten about.”

Food recycling update

A number of constituents have asked the position regarding the possible restoration of the food recycling service.
 
The council’s Head of Environment has updated me as follows :
 
“At the present time we are unable to recommence with the re-introduction of food waste collections, due to having to utilise available staff resources in order to ensure that the other collections are maintained. Unfortunately, the requirement to ensure safe physical distancing into waste collection operations slows down the collection operation significantly and requires more vehicles, staff and time to complete daily routes.
 
In order to reintroduce food waste collections, there is a similar requirement to allocate specific resources and to introduce engineering controls within cabs of the Refuse Collection Vehicles. Similar to many other local authorities, we are not yet in a position to return to regular collections of all waste streams at this time.  
 
However, please be assured that my waste team are working hard to look at ways that we can re-introduce food waste collections over the coming months and I will provide you with more detail when I am able to update you further.”