Council Meeting Minutes - 31 August 2023
Acharn Old Comrades Hut
KCC Members - Peter Ely, Carol May, Colin Morton, Alex Low, Shirley Shearer, John Iddon, Kerry Orr
John Duff (PKC), Andrew Barrie (River Tay Way), David O Donoghue (General Manager DLC)
Members of the local community – Terry Wisdom, George Mitchell, Sheila and Keith Mitchell, Bill Oppenheimer (LTA), Susan Duncan Miller, William Lindsay, Iona, Fiona Smith, Charlotte Flower, Nick Grant (Scottish Crannog Centre)
No representatives from Protect Loch Tay were present.
- Declarations of interest
Peter Ely, Charlotte Flower and John Duff are all trustees of the Scottish Crannog Centre
- Previous Minutes
Minutes approved – proposed by John Iddon and seconded by Kerry Orr
- Matters arising.
- Road Repairs – this is still a work in progress.
- Christmas in Kenmore expected to take place again in Dec 2023 and is agenda item for today’s meeting
- Coronation – Commemorative coins presented to each of the children at Kenmore Primary school by Shirley and Peter. Plans are being made to plant trees and site benches to commemorate the occasion.
- Kenmore Kirk – Olive Monro will provide update at next meeting.
- Kenmore in Bloom – DLC are reviewing the lease of Kenmore Beach to Kenmore in Bloom to understand the current situation.
- Reading Rooms – a new project is underway to re-establish the reading rooms as a community hub. A strong committee has been created to drive the project forward. It is possible the Reading Rooms will be purchased as a community asset.
- Pedestrian Crossing at Taymouth Marina – this item needs to be followed up on. Some smaller items on the agenda have had to take a lower priority due to the amount of time being spent dealing with the fallout from Taymouth Castle development protest groups.
- Keep Kenmore Clean – provision of more bins etc still under discussion with PKC.
- Perthshire Rangers – rota details are shared with KCC members as it was not permitted to share more widely. Members of the public should contact KCC members if a Perthshire Ranger needs to be contacted.
- D-Day event is still due to be planned.
- Taymouth Castle Development – Colin Morton responded to recent destructive rhetoric where KCC has been criticised for its handling of negotiations with DLC re Taymouth Castle. Colin Morton read a statement on behalf of the Council. The local community is encouraged to raise any questions regarding the development and these will be passed on to DLC.
Only update is that KCC has paid £15 to join the Loch Tay Association this year.
Nothing has been received from PKC to review recently. It is expected that the Castle Back of House development will be the next application but this has been delayed slightly.
- River Tay Way
Andrew Barrie from Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust spoke about the River Tay Way which is being introduced as a new linear long distance route for cycling and walking. The route will start at the new Crannog location at Dalerb. The walking route will finish in Perth and the cycling route will finish at the V&A museum in Dundee. Andrew advised that £1m has been invested so far on projects including upgrades to the National Cycle Network, toilets/showers at Beyond Adventure in Aberfeldy (due to open shortly) and new signage. The route from the Crannog centre will allow visitors to access the Scottish Crannog centre without having to walk down the road from Kenmore. The path will go via Drummond Hill rather than using the path from the Kenmore Club through the Arboretum. The latter option was reviewed but discounted as access to the Crannog centre was not possible using that route due to a private residence. Susan Duncan Miller asked if the new River Tay Way signs at the Courtyard had replaced the original signs. Andrew confirmed that the new sign had not replaced the old sign.
The attached leaflet was shared at the meeting.
- Loch Tay Association
Bill Oppenheimer (chairman of LTA) confirmed that the first AGM for 5 years was held 26/7/23 and was attended by approximately 30 people including representatives from the Protect Loch Tay group. Membership has increased significantly.
A new committee was elected at the meeting and includes representatives from a number of local businesses. The main aim of LTA currently is to rationalise the code of conduct for Loch Tay. This was originally attempted 15 years ago but foundered as PKC had no means of really enforcing the code. Stevie Thomas and Charlotte Flower are involved in the process of reviewing the current code of conduct as the first step.
Loch Tay straddles 3 geographic regions Stirling, Perth and Kinross and Loch Lomond National Park. LTA has the mandate to cover all 3 regions.
- Scottish Crannog Centre
Nick Grant provided the following update. After a couple of initial problems and discussions with PKC the building site at Dalerb is now working well. Access to the loch at Dalerb has been the most significant issue during the building works. Special arrangements have been made for local access and for the wild swimmers. Full public access should be restored in the near future.
Delivery of large modular buildings proceeded with limited disruption. The next large delivery is due around 18/19 Sept. George Mitchell asked if notice could be given of any planned deliveries to avoid unexpected delays. It was agreed that advanced notice would be posted on the local community Facebook noticeboards.
It is expected that the main contractor will departing shortly and a ‘soft’ opening is currently planned for late Nov 23. The Crannog Centre hopes to arrange an open day prior to the soft opening of phase 1. Local residents/businesses will be invited to the open day.
- Taymouth Estate, Kenmore and Loch Tay
Colin Morton provided the following update - 2 liaison meetings between KCC and DLC have taken place since the last KCC meeting. The first was with Tom Colopy on 5/7 and the second with David O’Donoghue, new general manager, on 31/8. David O’Donoghue will be living in Kenmore. Minutes of these meetings are available on the KCC website and key points are noted below.
DLC has completed the purchase of the shop in Kenmore. DLC is planning to re-open the shop in 2024 and is currently considering the best management model for the shop.
It is planned to re-open Kenmore Hotel in 2025.
DLC has also indicated that it will be sharing plans to redevelop Taymouth Trading when these are finalised. Planning permission will be required and this will be sought in line with current PKC requirements. The development is likely to take a couple of years.
DLC has responded to the feedback that communication regarding its plans has been inadequate to date and has committed to improve communications going forward. KCC maintains a Q&A section on its website which is updated as frequently as possible. DLC has agreed to meet with all local community councils and any other relevant formally constituted groups. DLC also responded to the queries raised in a letter by John Swinney and Pete Wishart 14/8 following the public meeting in Aberfeldy.
DLC has pledged to support the newly established project to rejuvenate the Reading Rooms in Kenmore. DLC has agreed to provide stud columns for the Reading Rooms.
DLC has reconfirmed that changes to core paths are temporary and improved signage for the routes available has been provided.
DLC is planning to introduce Open Days where members of the public will be able to visit the estate and golf course with all proceeds going to charity. It is anticipated there will be 4 open days a year.
An environmental impact study is currently underway.
Shirley Shearer updated that John Swinney held a meeting on 28/8 with local businesses in Kenmore and district that have been negatively impacted by the recent press stories that are painting Kenmore as a ‘ghost town’. The recent protests and subsequent press attention has galvanised local businesses to support the work that KCC has been doing with DLC to ensure the best outcome for all. The meeting was positive regarding building ‘Brand Kenmore’. Local businesses are determined to work together to achieve this with the help of positive initiatives from the Scottish Crannog Centre, Loch Tay Way and DLC’s development of the Castle. All this investment is very welcome. In the short term we need to work together to dispel the view that Kenmore is a ghost town and welcome the investment that DLC is making.
Terry Wisdom from Coshieville asked David O’Donoghue (DLC) what the plans are for re-opening the Chinese and Newhall bridges. David confirmed that DLC plans to re-open the Chinese and Newhall Bridges and restore the core paths. However unfortunately the state of repair of the Chinese Bridge is much worse than expected. It will require significant investment to carry out the multi million-pound repairs that are required. DLC have committed to undertake this, but the expected timescales are still tbc given the scale of the work. DLC are due to publish an illustration shortly for re-establishing a circular route.
- Christmas at Kenmore
- It was suggested that KCC help to set up a committee to organise Christmas at Kenmore going forward. A community fund should be available for this. Committee members are expected to be from KCC, local residents and businesses. Both DLC and LTA offered representatives to sit on the committee
- Children’s Play Area at Kenmore Primary School
- Alex Low raised on behalf of Jenny Gane. Kenmore Primary School Parent
council are raising money to build a new play area for the school which will also be accessible for local kids and any visitors. The 2 tower climbing frame, with slide etc will cost £22,240 (includes VAT). So far £20k has been raised. If we also want a swing that will be an extra £3000-5000 depending on style we opt for. Jenny will be constructing a fundraising website but if any local businesses are interested in donating or finding out more they can contact Jenny at email@example.com.
- Colin Morton agreed to provide list of Community Funding grants.
- John Duff also committed to review whether any funding would be available from PKC
Next Community Council Meeting: The Reading Room Kenmore, 26th October 2023 at 7pm