• Portobello Community Council
  • c/o 14 Rosefield Avenue
  • Portobello
  • EH15 1AU

Maureen Child Update 20 November 2020

Posted on: November 20th, 2020

Dear All


I picked up a couple of articles this week about wonderful Art Deco building The White House, Craigmillar and its history: https://www.edinburghlive.co.uk/news/edinburgh-news/fascinating-story-behind-art-deco-19281839 and https://blog.historicenvironment.scot/2017/07/saving-craigmillars-art-deco-heritage/.  A lovely building at the heart of Craigmillar and so brilliant that it was saved and put to good community use.


In these really tough times, a walk in the park can help restore a bit of sanity.  It has been restorative to enjoy the parks and green spaces in our city, many lovely ones in Portobello and Craigmillar.  Lots more information here: https://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/parks-greenspaces


There has been lots of heated debate and discussion in the last couple of weeks about how we achieve low traffic neighbourhoods.  More here about what this should look like: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/nov/13/children-britain-residential-streets-low-traffic-neighbourhoods-roads. We need a lot of tough conversations to help make this happen, just as they did in Holland in the 1960s.  Some reading here from today’s Guardian, thanks to Living Streets: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/nov/20/so-you-want-to-set-up-a-low-traffic-neighbourhood-heres-where-to-start.  


We four local Portobello/Craigmillar Councillors had a meeting with transport colleagues earlier this week and helped finalise the shape of a further consultation which will start next week on the ‘Joppa Triangle’ proposals for Brunstane Road and the Coillesdenes.  I will send you the link to the consultation and the finalised background paper as soon as I have it.


The new double yellow lines on Duddingston Road are part of the Spaces for People (SfP) temporary measures to enable social distancing at the busy school entrance of St John’s Primary School. This impacts most obviously on local residents in the houses on that road but it does still allow deliveries to households as per the Highway Code.  


To make these measures – or any others SfP changes – permanent will require Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) involving extensive consultation with opportunities for anyone to comment, object or support.  Clearly from feedback, some degree of enforcement and reinforcement of the message at drop off and pick up is required and I have asked parking officers and Police Scotland to give the area some attention.  There is a wish to promote a segregated cycle route from Portobello right through to Craigmillar, championed by SPOKES Porty and other active travel campaigners, but that can’t be done through SfP measures, but requires a full TRO process.


We Councillors and SPOKES Porty had a meeting with the Transport Committee Convener and Council officers this week about measures to make the junction at Kings Road safer and to promote the alternative route via Fishwives Causeway for walking and cycling.  The timing on that controlled crossing over Portobello bypass has been adjusted to make the lights change quicker and I am pushing – again, along with Living Streets – for crossings to react to pedestrian demand much faster at all times.


Craigmillar Now at last have the keys this week for the former church building at Fort Kinnaird.  One day, we will be able to welcome crowds of people in, but not while Covid 19 restrictions persist.  Our artist is in residence, the outdoor spaces are being transformed, and a planned programme of essential fabric repairs will start soon. We are in the process of buying the equipment needed to make a start on managing the Craigmillar community archives.  Exciting times, many thanks to all our various funders and supporters who are all listed on our website: https://craigmillarnow.com/


It’s always worth checking the weekly planning lists to find out what is happening in our city, perhaps near where you live.  Immediate neighbours are notified first, as it potentially affects them most, but anyone can comment on what they think of ay development.  You can sign up to getting the lists sent to you every week and easily find those in your own neighbourhood.  Click here: https://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/planningweeklylists


A Portobello resident noticed a dangerous looking wall while walking about and wondered who to call to get it made safe.  Here’s the contact if you ever need it: https://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/sharedrepairs


Local residents and businesses are suggesting we do a Window Winter Wonderland this year, which is a great initiative. Ideas are here: www.windowwanderland.com .  There is a Zoom session on Sunday 22 November at 4.30pm with local parent and artist Juliana Capes to give us ideas. Sunday’s one is on: Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/92594714059?pwd=MzFUNG5Fa05waTl0bGd3bktISnkyUT09 Meeting ID: 925 9471 4059 Passcode: zwN2Eu.


It’s Book Week and time to spotlight Craigmillar Literacy Trust who have a fantastic track record in promoting books and reading. They are seeking funds to continue that work, including the fabulous Craigmillar Books For Babies project who are giving out books a this Christmas.  More here: http://www.craigmillarbooksforbabies.org.uk/. Please find out more and consider supporting their work: https://localgiving.org/charity/craigmillarliteracytrust/


Have a good weekend, and stay safe!





Councillor Maureen Child

Labour Councillor Portobello/Craigmillar Ward

Office: 0131 529 3268

Mobile: 07718 666 481

Facebook Page: Maureen Child Standing Up for Portobello/Craigmillar

Twitter: @MaureenChild1