Kirknewton Powerdown funding ends

A busy, busy weekend.  The Meals and Wheels event was very well attended and everyone I spoke to seemed to have a good time!  The event was tinged with a little sadness as people in Kirknewton found out that Lisa and the Powerdown team, who put the event together, have not got a third year of funding from the Climate Challenge Fund and the project will end at the end of March (unless there is someone kind enough in the village who want to donate a spare £100,000 for the next year!). 

You can still take part in the food waste trial and get your free recycling caddie. Please let the Powerdown team know before the end of the month if you want to take part on 01506 883 988 or e mail  You will find over the course of the trial how much food you waste and in these tough economic times it may help you to save money!  Loads of caddies were given out on Saturday but we have plenty more if you want to take part in the trial.  This will help inform the business planning for the anaerobic digestor project.  If you want to know more about that I will be available in the KCDT village office from April.

Without the Powerdown team the Development Trust will have to rely on volunteers and look at other avenues of funding.  If you want to join the trust then contact and a membership form will be sent out to you.  Membership is free and you will be sent regular news about what the trust is up to you and how you can get actively involved if you wish.  A larger membership also helps the village for any right to buy projects that may come out of the current ‘I Love Kirknewton’ community consultation.  A number of people have joined the Trust over the last month (as well as subscribing to this blog – see right) so join today – and encourage your friends and family in Kirknewton to join too.  Remember it is an individual membership, so more than one member of your family can join.

Everyone who came to the Meals and Wheels event not only got a chance to see your Big Ideas from the recent Community Consultation but were able to see the plans for the park, contribute your thoughts for future development through the village Park Action Group and also have one last go on the old play park.  The work on the new play park begins today!

On todays blog I’m also presenting you the final comments put on maps from the village.  If you have anything to add comment here on the blog.  These maps fit in quite nicely with groups who attended the Meals and Wheels event.  There are your suggested cycle/walking routes and ways of improving those routes.  There are traffic management suggestions.  There are issues on improving the dog fouling issues in the village, including in the park (which is being monitored alongside the development of the new park) and finally some site specific suggestions.  Through the Wood For Winter Warmth meeting, the drop in day, the Meals and Wheels display, the Kirknewton facebook group, the Kirknewtoneh27 twitter feed and this blog over 600 people should know what ideas were put forward from Kirknewton.  We will also be able to keep you up todate with developing news with the new Kirknewton website – keep reading the blog for more details.  It is coming very, very soon!

Finally, thanks to people in Kirknewton and our friends at various facebook/twitter groups West Lothian went from 16th on Thursday to 6th on the WWF Earth Hour map!  Well done to all involved.  I’m not sure if the clocks moving forward negated all the good work achieved from 8.30 – 9.30pm on Saturday, but I hope you weren’t caught out with the clocks changing!  With all this activity I missed the fact there was a boat race on (Oxford won, by the way).  That must mean the Grand National is due!  Now if I get good odds will I be able to get that £100,000+ funding for Powerdown 3 we need???


Kirknewton blog explodes!

Yesterday the Kirknewton blog exploded with the most views since we started – you obviously wanted to see all your big ideas!  Today we start the maps – beginning with land use.  You can see more maps at the Meals and Wheels event tomorrow.  I have just spent the morning putting the display together.  Hope you find it informative.

You can subscribe to the blog if you wish (see the panel on your right).

One of your BIG ideas has been the redevelopment of the park (and sporting facilities around the village).  Work begins on Monday of the new play park (with benches hopefully).  Becky Plunkett will be at the Meals and Wheels event asking for your thoughts on further park  redevelopments and how you can help achieve that.  When I was speaking to Becky this week she described your ideas as “Kirknewton – a sports centre without a roof!” – that’s a pretty cool thought for the future, isn’t it?

Your Big Ideas Pt 4 – The over 16’s

Part 4 of our daily presentation of Your Big Ideas from the ‘I Love Kirknewton’ Community Consultation.  Everyone was asked what do you like about Kirknewton, what don’t you like and what would you like to see.

All the ‘What would you like to see’ views will be presented at the Meals on Wheels event in the park this Saturday.  You can comment there or online. 

 What do you like about Kirknewton

1                    Location – access to Edinburgh, Glasgow, Livingston, rural, sense of community, friendly and safe was the biggest reason

2                    Facilities – shop and Post office

3                    Public Transport links

4                    Schools

5                    Having the Kirknewton Community Development Trust

 What do you not like about Kirknewton

 1                    Lack of facilities – things to do for all ages

2                    Public Transport – cost and unreliability

3                    School too small

4                    Danger of overdevelopment

5                    Lack of recycling

 What changes would you like to see in Kirknewton

 1                    More facilities for youth

2                    Doctors

3                    Improving the community centre

4                    Traffic Management

5                    Public Transport – improve reliability

Balerno High School Big Ideas – Pt 3

The third part of Your Big Ideas on the blog – leading up to the display at the Meals and Wheels events on Saturday and your mapped suggestions for the village next week.

On Wednesday 2nd March we spent 45 minutes talking to Balerno High School pupils who live in Kirknewton.  This event took place at a drama studio in the school.  26 pupils participated.  We also captured children under 15 at the Village Hall Kosy Kafe.   Their top priorities are listed below

1                    Skate Park – because of transport to other venues, lack of things to do, opportunity to ‘design’ it

2                    Improve bus service (with suggestions made), particularly to Balerno

3                    Park Improvements (ie skate park, lights on football pitch, rugby posts/football goals etc.)

4                    Flowers in areas

5                    Cleaning up areas – graffiti, poor tarmac

6                    Older students were interested in the community, being involved in change & interested in helping people.

Your Big Ideas Pt 2 – Kirknewton Primary Pupils

There was a huge surge of interest in this blog yesterday so welcome to part 2 of ‘Your Big Ideas’.  Thanks to for your questions and comments.  Remember we will be at the Meals and Wheels event on Saturday in the park to share more ideas with you. 

As all good daytime serials begin – “Previously on ‘Your Big Ideas'”…. we presented the Kirknewton nursery kids ideas and to day it is the turn of the Primary School Pupils.  To recap on Friday 4th February we spoke to the Primary School pupils at their assembly and then in their classes they chose their likes, dislikes and what they liked to see in Kirknewton.  These ideas were fed back to the pupils on the Pupil Council who gave us the school priorities for the village at a meeting on Friday 11th February.  198 pupils participated in total.  Here are their ideas…

1                    Café (with burgers).  Ice Cream cones or ice cream can in summer

2                    Bus Timetables so don’t cross & make traffic jam

3                    Dog Bins all over, especially Main Street, Kaimes, Park

4                    Joint 4th – Trees/More Activities ie Football Team, BMX Tax, Skate Park

5                    Youth Group (meeting place)

Tomorrow we give you the likes, dislikes and ideas from Balerno High School pupils who live in Kirknewton

Sharing your Big Ideas Part 1

Each day this week I’m going to share with you some of the Big Ideas the community put forward during the recent ‘I Love Kirknewton’ Community Consultation.  Please feel free to comment on the findings either online or direct to me at

About 70 of you have already seen (and had the opportunity to comment on) some of these ideas at the talk I did after the ‘Wood For Winter Warmth’ session or in all their glory at the ‘Your Big Idea’ drop in day.  Thanks to everyone who came to either event, especially to those who spent nearly an hour reading all the comments made as part of the consultation.  I’ll present all the ideas put forward at the ‘I Love Kirknewton’ Drop In Day at the Meals and Wheels event on Saturday 26th March in the Village Park (as well as the maps of Kirknewton with comments made by you on ways to improve the village – you can see and comment on the maps on this blog next week!)

Over 495 members of the community participated in the ‘I Love Kirknewton’ community consultation, including 198 primary school children, 26 Balerno High School Children, 120 at a drop in event and the rest via in street, doorstep or stakeholder group meetings.

The largest age range of participants was between 25-44 and their numbers matched the population profile of the area.  

 When asked what’s it like living / working in Kirknewton (1 being not good, 10 being very good) the largest number was 8 (just over 60 paticipants), then 7 (40 participants), then 9 (just under 30 participants) then 10 (just over 25 participants).  The lowest number scored on this question was a 3.

On Friday 4th February we spoke to the Primary School pupils at their assembly and then in their classes they chose their likes, dislikes and what they liked to see in Kirknewton.  These ideas were fed back to the pupils on the Pupil Council who gave us the school priorities for the village at a meeting on Friday 11th February.  198 pupils participated in total.  You can see their ideas tomorrow – but  the nursery kids in the school would like…

1                    Ice Cream Shop

2                    Book shop or library

3                    Stop dogs going into the swing park

4                    Another crossing by the shop

5                    A new duck pond

6                    A bigger community centre

Tomorrow – the Primary School Pupils!