e-Bulletin from Gavin Corbett

Read here for news on Caledonian Railway Path, a new canalside development and a community garden in Hutchison, from local councillor for Fountainbridge and Craiglockhart, Gavin Corbett.

Merchiston Community Council is an impartial organisation and publishes information provided by any of our local elected representatives regardless of party allegiance, with the exception of explicit canvassing material. The opinions and positions expressed are those of the representative and not of MCC.

Welcome to an occasional bulletin from local councillor Gavin Corbett about things that may be of interest in the Fountainbridge – Craiglockhart area.
I always welcome your feedback!

Reflections on 2020 Usually I have to think about what’s best to say as one year draws to a close and another begins. Not this year.
There is only one theme for 2020. COVID-19. Like everyone I have worried about the pressure on families, alongside the isolation felt by people living on their own. And local businesses and community organisations facing huge losses in income.
   At the same time I recognise and thank everyone who has helped so far: neighbours, community organisations, businesses. We are closer to the end than the beginning. And we can celebrate the spaces which have been so important for wellbeing: the canal and the Water of Leith, Saughton and Harrison Parks, the Craiglockhart Hills and woods. Let’s build on that in 2021!

Path clean up time!
  One of the things I’ve missed most about 2020 has been community events, including our many clear-up events. However, we kept with tradition and held our annual New Year clear up of the Caledonian Railway path, which runs from Harrison Place to Dundee Terrace, on Saturday 2 January. Don’t be put off by the picture! It was taken last year. This year we worked in household groups or solo or in socially-distanced pairs using our own tools where possible, with face covering and hand sanitiser.
  Meanwhile in nearby Harrison Park, it was fantastic to see local residents decorate the large fir tree on the diagonal path with natural decorations. Well done on bringing some cheer!  

  Canal Trust   Two of the best canal-based organisations, Re-Union Canal Boats and Fountainbridge Canalside Initiative, have joined forces to launch an exciting proposal for a canal-based community development trust, covering the area from the canal basin at Lochrin out as far as the Lockharton Bridge at Ashley Terrace.
  Among the aims of the Trust could be running and expanding the canal festival, managing and improving public spaces near the canal and engaging more local groups. But they want to hear from local residents so do please fill in their survey which takes less than 5 minutes to complete. You can access it via the Re-Union website.
  Along the canal, huge plaudits to Bridge8 Hub for salvaging what they can from what’s been a wreck of a year for outdoor centres. The brilliant Nordic Nights programme has caught the imagination of so many people across the city.

Hutchison Grows   Over the last 2-3 years, the Clean Green Hutchison campaign has been developing ideas to improve the green and open spaces of Hutchison, Chesser and Slafeford. Several clean-ups have taken place and, over the difficult months of 2020, the Hutchison Home Grown project has been sharing tips for local residents to grow their own food.
  As we look ahead to better days in 2021, there are exciting ideas to develop a community garden along the lines already seen throughout Edinburgh (the picture above is of the Royal Edinburgh Community garden just off Myreside).
  A couple of well-protected sites in the middle of tenement blocks have been identified and a postcard survey of local residents living in those flats has been very positive. All we need now is the relaxation of rules, when the time is right, to allow the work to take off!

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