Kingswells Community Council Newsletter April 2013

Kingswells Community Council Newsletter

April 2013


We are disappointed to learn that the Kingswells Reporter is no longer in production.  We have produced this newsletter to keep in touch with the community whilst alternative arrangements are made.

A new look Kingswells Community News will be published in June.



The Kingswells community is to benefit from an on-going charitable trust fund

We are pleased to report that Kingswells is to benefit from a charitable trust, called the Prime Four Community Trust, sponsored by Foundation Scotland and Drum Property Group. The trust is being created as a ring-fenced fund within Foundation Scotland which will be used to support a wide range of projects to benefit the residents of the Kingswells Community Council area.  In future, the Trust will receive donations from local businesses operating in the Kingswells area, particularly from those based within the Prime Four business Park.

A local panel will be established to decide priorities for the allocation of this trust fund and advise Foundation Scotland as to how funds are to be used. If you are a member of a local group, and have knowledge and interest in the Kingswells area, please come forward to be considered for selection onto the panel.  The panel will probably meet 2-3 times a year to advise how to allocate funds to the chosen community groups, facilities or projects.

Do you have some ideas for a project that will benefit the community that need some funding? The Trust Fund should be setup during May when applications from Local Groups will be welcome.

Please contact KCC  for more information on this exciting opportunity, which will make a real difference to Kingswells (see page 2)

Kingswells Roundabout

The work going on is to try to limit the additional traffic problems that will arise once the business park is occupied by thousands of staff.   There was no consultation about these roadworks.  Communication by Aberdeen City Council has been extremely poor and it has been difficult for the Community Council to find out exactly what is going on.

We understand that:

  • The roundabout will have three lanes controlled by traffic lights at peak times.
  • The bus stop beside the church will remain.  The one across the road will be removed and this is likely to inconvenience some people. (KCC argued to retain this stop in a new location, but this was turned down as a safe location would be so far from the village it would be ineffective).
  • New bus bays and stops will be created on both sides of the A944 on the Westhill side of the roundabout.  They will be connected by a new pelican crossing.
  • The existing exit from the park-and-ride on to the A944 will be closed off.  A new entrance to the park-and-ride will be created via the main “boulevard” road into Prime Four (controlled by traffic lights).

The ugly black sheeting used to hold back the banking will be seeded with grass when the growing season begins.

The field between the A944 and the Den Burn that’s been turned into a mass of soil heaps, mud and pipes is actually Green Space Network.  The field is owned by Aberdeen City Council but neither they, nor Prime Four, have clear plans to restore it to a natural state.  We shall be pressing strongly for this to happen.  It is our view that trees/bushes should be planted here and also adjacent to the new road verges to make up for all the trees and hedges that have been removed.  It would also enhance the setting of Prime Four.

De Vere Hotel

Aberdeen City Council has approved plans for a 4-star De Vere hotel within the business park.  Kingswells Community Council supported the idea of a quality hotel within Prime Four on the grounds that it would bring much-needed leisure, health and fitness facilities to our community.  However, we objected to the position, height and appearance of the building which will be extremely prominent in the local landscape.

We met with De Vere senior managers to discuss these issues but they would not compromise on their plans.   We believe that Aberdeen City Council has adopted a “development-at-any-cost” approach and has broken its own planning rules for the site.  These state clearly that “Buildings must be set within the landscape and be sympathetic to the rural setting, and be of a high-quality design.”  This is yet another frustrating example of the Community Council’s views being ignored by officials in Aberdeen City Council.

Time will tell what Kingswells residents think about the appearance of the new hotel.

Village Maintenance

Each year around August representatives from Kingswells Community Council get together with senior Officers from the City Council to carry out a general maintenance walkabout around the village

The purpose of this inspection is to determine the standard of grass cutting, litter collection, tree and shrub maintenance and path and road deterioration during the previous twelve months and to coordinate a programme not only to improve standards but also to highlight issues that we feel requires attention in order to maintain the village to a reasonable standard.

Although at times it might not feel like it (especially last year what with the wet weather and all) we do excerpt pressure on the various Council departments to keep our village looking its best

Although many of these issues are dealt with on an on-going basis others do take time to accomplish. We are now pleased to report that with the invaluable help of our two Councillors, David Cameron and Steve Delaney, many of last years hit list have been achieved

  • we have been promised a much improved grass cutting programme for this coming year, weather permitting of course, and to that end we are to be given the programme from the appropriate Council Dept. you can be assured we will let them know in no uncertain terms if we feel this isn’t enough
  • the central reservation lamp standards on the two islands approaching the Shopping Centre have now been replaced as they were deemed dangerous due to excessive rust
  • the broken fencing across the Road from the Surgery has been removed
  • all of the broken trees have been removed
  • all kerbside drains have been cleaned especially down Fairley Road as these were totally blocked and causing flooding
  • The Island lamination and kerb have been removed, you know the one that the Bus keeps knocking down as it turns at the foot of Fairley Road
  • Although not their responsibility, well not all of it anyway, we have managed to get the Council to cut back all foliage in the lane that separates Bethlin from Migvie. This is a popular walkway and at times can be almost impassable
  • A number of our road surfaces have deteriorated badly we do keep pressure on to have numerous roads resurfaced and not just repaired with a temporary fill. This is a hard “fecht” due to budget constraints but we will keep the pressure on
  • we feel sure you will all agree that the Village Centre is starting to look tired and is in need of some upgrading. To this end a working group has been set up to investigate what can be done, the group comprises of Community Council members, City Council officials and Councillor Delaney

Lastly if you have any issues of this nature that you wish to bring to the attention of the Community Council please use the links.

Police Message

KCC and the Police want Kingswells residents to be aware that Kingswells is one of the areas that is subject to sneak-in crimes.

Thieves walk along target streets checking for insecure homes and cars. If access is gained to a home then car keys are often found near the front door making cars parked in the driveway an easy target.

Many insurance companies do not cover theft where there has been no forced entry.

Remember . . . lock it or lose it!

With the new single police force for Scotland the new non-emergency phone number is 101.

Broadband

Good News . . Aberdeen has been successful in obtaining funding to provide faster broadband. Kingswells will be included in this project. The bad news is we need to wait until 2014-15. KCC will keep you advised.

Business Park

Kingswells Community Council has met regularly with the developers of Prime Four to try to ensure the best possible outcomes for people living in Kingswells.  Right now, the site looks a mess but plans for future landscaping look promising.  However, communication by Prime Four and Aberdeen City Council has not been good enough.  Some buildings, for example, are higher than we were led to believe at the outset and people have been shocked by the amount of tree-felling required to change the road layout.  Too little information was given about why Kingswood Drive and the Lang Stracht were being dug up.  After some “digging” ourselves, we discovered that this is to carry gas and fibre optic broadband into Prime Four.  Unfortunately, this will not provide faster broadband for Kingswells residents.

Amenity Land

Amenity land has been planned into Kingswells to provide green spaces for everyone’s benefit and enjoyment.  It has become apparent that a few residents are moving fences to encompass amenity land into their own gardens. This anti-social and selfish behaviour is illegal and will he treated as such.  The same applies to cutting down or lopping amenity trees without official permission.

Kingswells Community Council

Meetings are held at the coffee shop at the Community Centre on the second Monday of every month at 8.00pm. We are always delighted to welcome visitors! Please come along – we are here to represent your views and are eager to hear them.

You can always contact us by emailing kcc@kwells.org or post a letter in the post box between the two notice boards at the village centre. Or by post to: 3 Corse Avenue, Kingswells, AB15 8TL.

2 comments

  1. “Amenity land has been planned into Kingswells to provide green spaces for everyone’s benefit and enjoyment. It has become apparent that a few residents are moving fences to encompass amenity land into their own gardens. This anti-social and selfish behaviour is illegal and will he treated as such. ”

    If this is the case, then why was the amenity land behind Derbeth Grange given free of charge to the residents at 49–55 Derbeth Grange in 2007 without consultation or a Neighbour Notification of the Planning application with those properties bordering the amenity land and in contravention of the Planning Regulations? Inconsistent application of planning regulations when it suits?!!

  2. Do you have some ideas for a project that will benefit the community that need some funding ?
    Why not finish core path 42 & connect the community of Kingswells with Brimmond hill country park.

    We feel sure you will all agree that the Village Centre is starting to look tired and is in need of some upgrading ?
    A good fire….only a suggestion !!!

    It has become apparent that a few residents are moving fences to encompass amenity land into their own gardens ?
    Amenity land or ransom strips, what is the difference ?

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