Kirknewton Community Development Trust News November 2018


The Kirknewton Community Development Trust Annual General Meeting is scheduled for Thursday 6th December at 7pm.
The Agenda is
1) Welcome to the meeting, attendance and apologies for absence. 
2) To approve the minutes of the last AGM
3) To receive the audited accounts
4) To receive a report from the Chair and short reports from the Gala and the Village Hall Group KCA
5) Resignation of Directors
6) Elect Directors
7) Approve auditors
If you are a have a question for the Board please email by Monday 3rd December and they will endeavour to answer your question at the event.
Details about the Trust can be found here
2018 – 2019
It has been a challenging year for the Trust, particularly in light of the decision to not grant Fauch Hill Windfarm by West Lothian Council and by the Reporter at appeal, which means we don’t have the expected continuation of funding now the Big Lottery Scotland funds have ended.  This is a loss of around £80,000 a year to the community. 
In particular it means we may lose staff early next year who support the volunteer led Board of the Trust to ensure we make things happen and achieve the outcomes of the Community Development Plan, put together by your comments during the Kirknewton Community Consultation.
The next consultation and plan is due to take place in late 2019/early 2020 and once again we won’t have additional project funds unless we are successful in our fundraising and grant applications.  This is becoming increasingly challenging during austerity and local authority cuts that mean former council funded groups are also chasing the same limited pots of funding that are available to us.
However we continue to move things forward – here is a short summary of what’s being going on.
The KCDT Board and Kirknewton Community Council hope to meet during a facilitated discussion to look at positive ways we can harness and direct energies of the two bodies.
They have already identified the need for more volunteers to help run the Village Hall – if interested please e mail 
The Kirknewton Community Council is only one of two elected community councils in Scotland (for a second time!), meaning they have do have a lot of influence on decision making and directing available Council resources to support Kirknewton.  Coupled with an acknowledgement by external consultants for Big Lottery Scotland that Kirknewton Community Development Trust is a perfect anchor organisation there is great potential.  However it is all volunteer driven, so they do need your support if you have the skills, experience and drive to ‘muck in’ on projects.
The Trust currently employs a CEO, Finance Officer, Youth and Volunteer Officer, Fundraising Officer, Community Gardener and two p/t cleaners.  We believe we have been very fortunate to get great staff members on board who are doing brilliant work, many of who live in the village.  This also makes us a significant employer in the local area.
The Trust still has a healthy bank account, albeit ringfenced for projects and being used as contributions towards larger funding applications or cash flow when grants are paid in arrears.
  • We are meeting two representatives from the lottery on 16th November in the Green Room to review, assist and develop our recent application for funding for a new project which takes what we have built on over the last five years and enhances it.
  • The Green Room break in caused over £5000 of damage and not all of that can be recovered under insurance, largely affecting the Youth Club.
The lottery is raising approximately £400 a week, half to community groups and projects.  We have already donated £260 for a new easel for Playgroup with applications in from Boxcir, the School and Gala.
It’s simple to apply for funds – send us your name, group, how much is required and what activity it is for consideration to
Buy your tickets before 7pm every Monday at Festival Stores.  If you want to never miss the lottery set up a standing order with your bank.  Email for details.
The shop is donating money from sales of hot chocolate next week and we are working with local business to provide extra in kind and cash prizes.  We help promote business to the local community for this – please contact Debbie Douglas, the Fundraising Officer, at
The Youth club activities up to Xmas include a an overnight sleep out for Social Bite, a trip to the military museum in Wilkieston and promoting young people’s mental health through Feels FM.  Ailsa Meldrum, our Youth & Volunteering Officer, has been supporting the Youth Club volunteers and promoting YC within the community including through Kirknewton Primary School and Balerno High School.
The Youth Club can always use more volunteers to help so e mail if you want to support young people activity in the village.
  • Ailsa worked with Debbie, the Fundraising Officer, to advertise, promote and attend eco car and bike events held in the community – both events were well attended with over 30 bikes being repaired and 10 people attending the eco car event.
  • Debbie has recently been awarded funds for the Trust to purchase two electric eco-bikes that can be used for short journeys, to the medical centre or library in East Calder for example.
  • Ailsa has also been working with members of the community council to help with events they would like to put on (we also gave training for their new communication strategy), supporting the local volunteer groups with PVGs (checks for working with children and young people) and practical support.  She has also been researching and info gathering from the West Lothian Volunteer Network regarding YC, regular coffee mornings and fundraising.
  • Ailsa has been building on links and relationships with Balerno High School and Kirknewton Primary School on working together as a community to have a screening of the resilience documentary and raising awareness of ACE’s including going to the conference in Glasgow last month, the resilience documentary in Balerno last week and networking.
  • Ailsa also organised a memorial tree for babyloss awareness week which was well received, with members of the community adding ribbons, hearts and stories with Ailsa.
The funding for this role ends in December but it is hoped we can maintain in through Community Lottery funds and funds from work being done by the Community Gardener.
This fund from Scottish Government and Development Trust Association of Scotland is to fund posts who can develop and raise funds to support community activity.  Debbie Douglas and Greg Young, our Community Gardener, are funded from this grant until March 2019 but we are hoping for a years extension beyond that.
Greg, our new Community Gardener,  has built a base of repeat customers requiring work in the community.  He encourages people to recycle their garden waste and gives advice on how to do that (if they don’t do it already). 
If you’d like Greg to help with your garden email for a quote.
  • This role has already supported the work on the Charles Jencks project at the East End of the village. It is expected to be complete by spring/summer of next year and as part of the arts grant funding their is money for a small arts festival and official opening of the artwork.  Charles Jencks has international standing and it is hoped this unique work will encourage visitors to Kirknewton, supporting local business, increased tourism and creating employment.
  • Along with plans to provide garden services for estates across Kirknewton Greg is also in the planning stage for the establishment of a Friends of Kirknewton Community Woods group and working on a funding application for Woods in and around Towns (Forestry Commission).  This is to support work at the Community Garden in the Park and in Churchill Way.  We are also investigating ways we can support the area around Harperigg, where we have already got funding for a broadband project and another application for a defib.
  • Greg is also helping out with Muddy Boots at the School Gardening Club and during the winter will plan the work on the unkempt area across from Meadowbank for which we have funds of £10,000 to improve.
  • Applications for a Football Fund to Aviva have been made in preparation for the Pavilion.  It’s online with a request for £25,000.  You can support that application here.
  • Bank of Scotland have been approached for £25,000.
  • We received £876 for a Climate Challenge Grant and working up towards a new application.  Debbie has been working with Eco Bike and Car partners for help with this.
  • We have received £4k for Ebike funding.
  • We have been successful at getting paid for authors for a Live Literature event.
  • We are looking for funds for fireworks and Xmas Fair next year.
  • £1000 has been given for the Pensioners Fund with an additional £1000 from the defunct pensioners group bank account and £700 from a fund applied for by the Community Council.  Debbie is working with representatives from the Community Council on this.
  • There are currently applications in for £140,000 of funding from Robertson Trust, NatWest Opportunities and National Lottery.

Debbie has also been working on a Shop Local event on 25th November (details below) as part of the Christmas Festival.  Unfortunately the Stables is booked throughout December so no Christmas Fair there this year.

We have also been doing work on Heritage Lottery Fund for a £50/60,000 history project along with local partners, a possible extension of that project from Leader across West Lothian or funding to support activity around Housing, Young Start Funds and YMI Music Strengthening.
The Community Council will write a letter of support to the Heritage Lottery Fund application and donated £100 towards the proposal.
We’ve been working with other West Lothian Trusts to establish a Development Worker for the region to work with DTAS (which now has 250 members across Scotland) and ensure the Council become more aware what Trusts are doing as well as supporting new, establishing and developed Trusts.  This will feed into the Democracy Matters agenda which has the potential to lead to funding going to community groups rather than the local authority for some matters (although some way off!).
Horizon Housing will manage the properties and allocations for the property when built.  Working with Link they also designed the interior of the properties for the elderly, making them dementia friendly and accessible for varying needs.  The houses will be low cost to heat and light.
Staffing issues and resource implications meant our chosen RSL Development partner were unable to continue the development of houses at what is now know as Hillhouse Park (the land at the East end of the village).
We are currently working with a set of architects, have just commissioned a QS and working with a consultant from Rural Housing Scotland to complete our Rural Housing Grant for early next year (an application expected in the region of £500,000).
West Lothian Council seem to be coming to a resolution to the section 75 agreement (a contribution for local infrastructure such as schools etc) for this affordable rented housing.  This will inform the required business plan and full planning application for 7 single storey homes.
The houses have to be complete by March 2021.
The windfarm at Camilty has had its application for larger turbines approved and have approached us through the Forestry Commission to discuss community benefit and community investment in this project.  We expect this is our last opportunity to invest in a renewable energy project.
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