COMMUNITY COUNCIL PROJECTS
Over the last 20 plus years the community council has campaigned on many issues that were brought to it, at its regular public meetings as well as identifying areas and seeking the communities views on whither the issue should be pursued. The following are a few of the areas that the community council has been actively involved in.
- Stonehouse Bypass.
Former community councilllor Hugh Burns was involved in the early formation of BAG the Bypass Action Group. During the campaign the community council members carried out a 24 hour survey physically counting vehicles at three points over the village to produce statistics that would assist with the campaign. Current chairman George Smith and Secretary Robert Freel were the instigators of this survey. The survey made Hamilton Advertiser headlines on the number of heavy goods vehicles ploughing through the village. This resulted in Strathclyde Regional Council (SRC) carrying out its own survey to check figures. This was followed up by the community council organising and taking a bus of demonstrators to lobby SRC when their roads committee were making decisions on their capital budget and future of village bypasses. Members also attended a consultation meeting run by the local authourity to argue the case for a bypass.
Whilst it was not seen as a full bypass it was a victory that would not have been achieved without the interventions of the community council.
2. Millheugh Road Closure
Following a landslip on this road the local authourity decided to close the road, however the community council objected tot he closure and fought to have it reopened. This resulted in a public inquiry being held in the village town hall at which the community council gave evidence tot he reported and attended the site visits to view the road. The community council argued tha that due to lack of maintenance the road slipped. The inquiry found in the community favour and the road was repaired and reopened .
3. Stonehouse Hospital (various campaigns)
Prior to the current hospital, the community council fought to retain A&E services on the old site and fought to retain a hospital on the site when a closure was proposed. The community council held several public meetings with representatives of the hospital present to retain a hospital presenceon site. This was achieved and the community council were consultative stakeholders on the new site and succeeded in having a community room available for community groups to use.
When the new hospital opened the community council fought to obtain more clinics and opposed the closure of clinics.
4. Travellers site
The community council campaigned against a travellers site at cott Castle and were unsuccessful
5. New Community Facility (ICF)
Stonehouse community council started the campaign to have a community facility back in the 1980's. The community council fought hard to have a community facility commitment built into the local plan and in subsequent years fought to have it remain in each subsequent local plan produced even although the coucil sought to remove it.
With the standard of the existing local halls failing to meet basic health and safety regulations and posing a danger to users the campaign to move the build of new facility took more momentum.
The first location planned for the ICF was to attach it to Stonehouse Primary, however following two open meetings one organised by the council and one by the community council this location was rejected and SLC were asked to find and evaluate alternative sites.
The local authourity owned land sites at Murray drive, Violet crescent, Union street were examined and rejected by SLC. The best available site was green belt land at the edge of the village and whilst not the best location it was felt that it was better here than not having a hall.
the removal of the library to this hall was never on the agenda however when the council transfered some of its functions to the leisure trust (libraies being one) they decided this would be better located in the new facility.
The following photographs show the hall at various stages.
6. Local Plan
The community council has commented and input to the local plann since 1985, ensuring that the bypass was retained in the local plan as well as a community facility. Without these being ion the plan they would never have been built. The community council has fought to increase infrastructre within the village. The community council has fought to ensure that section 75 development contributions are retained and spent within in the village.
7. Village surveys
Numerous surveys have been carried out by the community council to asses the feelings of the village towards obtaining change. These include the following:
a) survey of residents to seek views on the infilling of the boating pond and upgrde of the public park.
b) 24 hour road survey to gauge the number of vehicles travelling through the village and to supplement the push to botain a bypass.
c) Village plan outline to establish residents thoughts on village infrastructure. (2016).
d) Village survey 2020 to outline a list of priorities that can be used to lobby elected members of South Lanarkshire Council to obtain work or promote spend in Stonehouse. This would also give the community council a list of where grant funding could be spent where works were not normally carried out by the local authourity.
8) Public Inquiries
the members of Stoenhouse community council have been involved in a number of public inquires over the years
a) Sidehead road development at Naismith court
b) Milheugh road closure
c) Various local plan inquiries
9) Hustings / Local debates
The community council has organised and ran hustings for local and prlimentary elections where candidates were invited and questioned on their policy as well as local These events have generally been ticket only and resulted in well over 100-1250 local people attending.
10) Public Meetings
All meetings are open to the public where questions can be asked on the night as well as local authourity departments being invited to attend and answer question in their respective areas. Ie roads, housing, social work.