We have provided an update on the Village Hall. Scottish Ministers have now issued a formal Decision on the PHCBS Appeal against DGC refusal to allow a Community Asset Transfer to PHCBS and the subsequent review process. The Scottish Ministers agree with the Reporter that PHCBS is not a community transfer body. Scottish Ministers therefore find that this appeal is incompetent and accordingly the appeal is dismissed.
This is quite a complex legal decision and the reporter also has looked at the merits of the case for transfer of the Village Hall to community ownership and his analysis of the CAT against the seven best value themes to ensure that a property can be sold or leased at less than market value provides insight into what would make a successful asset transfer request. We have provided a summary and overview of the Report, which is to be made publicly available, under Village Hall Updates June 2021.
Over the last few months PCDT members have been working to re-fit the former dress shop at 7 Main Street Portpatrick, to bring it into community use as a Community Resource Centre. We have agreed a long term lease with the owners and a specification for the re-fit. The work has involved strip out of the old shop fittings, re-wiring, replumbing re-painting and new flooring throughout. We are delighted with the support of donations of materials, equipment and fittings received from local businesses with particular thanks to:
Stranraer Carpet Co.
And to local people ( A&S MacLeod, D Higgins, G McKee) for donations of material and equipment. All work has been done under covid-19 restrictions and in view of these continuing restrictions we will be having a “virtual” opening. In the short term the “Gaitherin Place” will be used to provide a range of support services and due to covid restrictions this will be on a 1 to 1 appointment basis. This will be a continuation of the work we have been doing to provide advocacy, sign-posting and a listening ear service. As restrictions ease we will be able to open up more and provide a range of services and activities.
PCDT have responded to the recent call for community consultation by the Portpatrick Community Council.
You can read our response here. We are expressing concern about the lack of clarity and sparseness of the evidence supplied in order for a balanced judgement on the merits of the proposal. We have also asked PCC to comment on the decision to refer to the area as “Portpatrick Harbour Playpark” rather than “Euan’s Playspace”.
We have been collating the numbers for our Covid resilience work to feedback to D & G Council. The following help was offered to vulnerable and shielding members of our community over the last 26 weeks up until 15th October.
provision of food parcels,
emergency payment for utilities,
provision of hot and frozen meals,
a listening ear,
delivery of essential medication
transport to Doctor and Ophthalmic appointments
Shopping for those who are in complete isolation
Sign-posting and advocacy services
Financial Support (Elec and Phone bills)
The numbers for specific services are:
Regular Hot meal Service – for 37 people – 567 Hot Meals
Shopping Service – for 25 People – 96 Shopping trips – 16 Individual Families
Regular Food Parcels Delivered for 23 People – 88 Food Parcels – 13 Individual Families
Doctors Visits for – 2 people – 10 trips
Medicine pick-ups – 14 People – 92 medicine pickups
Advocacy Support – 10 people – 12 Successful interventions
This adds up to 111 individual support services, but there is some duplication/ overlap. We have helped 67 unique individuals. Thanks to all our volunteers but a very special thank you to Heather who has been doing 2-3 and sometimes 4 or more visits to Stranraer per week and has handled all of the advocacy support work. She has achieved some great successes getting additional medical and mental health support and accessing universal credit payments and getting housing benefits cuts reversed and negotiating utility build payments etc. not to mention some appliance repairs, lightbulbs changes and getting a new carpet fitted!