Councillor Maureen Child blogs

Maureen_Child_17_200x200Dear All

It’s Halloween this Saturday and there may be lots more spooky activity for children this year because (Hooray!) it’s not a school night and weather promises to be kind to us.  Good advice from the police to kids for parents and carers to share – to have fun, but stay safe. Stick to well-lit areas; take care crossing roads; stick with friends; stay in areas you know well.  See here:  On the same spooky theme, Earthy in Windsor Place Portobello is having a pumpkin carving competition for your wee ones this  And I hear Portobello Parkrun in Figgate Park has a Halloween theme on Saturday morning.


The Council’s Draft Parking Action Plan consultation ends 31 October, this weekend.  Often the only people who respond are people objecting!  So even if you agree, or want to ask for more, do say so here:


I hope you’ve heard about the Edinburgh Solar Co-op, but this is a chance to meet some of the Directors, ask questions and pick up a copy of the share offer document. Investing in a co-operative might be a new concept for a lot of people.  It’s an exciting opportunity for local people to benefit from local renewable energy.  In addition to a reasonable return on your investment this new social enterprise aims to help make Edinburgh a greener and more equal community. Drop in to find out how:


Event to be held at the following time, date and location:

Saturday, 31 October 2015 from 10:00 to 16:00 (GMT)

Tumbles at Portobello
20 Westbank Street
EH15 1DR Edinburgh
United Kingdom

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To Absent Friends is a storytelling festival taking place next month.  More here:


Craigmillar Community Grows is a brilliant project that is helping more local people get outdoors and build the confidence they might have lost for one reason or another. Find more about how the project can help you – or you can help them!


Craigmillar Medical Group has kicked off its annual anti-flu vaccination campaign with a series of drop-in sessions, beginning Monday 26 October. The drop in clinic is open Monday 26 October 9am to 7pm running through to Tuesday 27 – Friday 30 October.  Or you can make an appointment another time, or at another clinic.  Mine’s with my own GP next week. Note to self – flu is worse than a wee jag!


Thank you to Emma Wood and everyone in Portobello and beyond who came and supported the her Portobello tea party and silent auction last weekend. Not only was it a really lovely atmosphere, Emma and her friends helped raise almost £1,000 to help support the ambitions of Godknows Maseko to create a sustainable future for his STEKA village in Malawi. Thanks again for everyone’s really generous contributions and we’ll look forward to more reports through Emma’s daughter Lilidh who is out there volunteering with the project. Godknows Maseko has emailed Emma to say that the money we raised will help him buy the land for the STEKA vocational skills centre and allow him to start building the workshops. Some fabulous photos on Emma’s Facebook page.


Some improvements in the quality of the Magdalene Glen Park were committed as part of the new Portobello High School project, in part compensation for the loss of Portobello Park. Other things may well need done in the local area, and we need to sort those things too, but this money is dedicated making the Park a better place to be.  The survey is open until Friday 13 November. Comments from the survey will be used to draft a proposed final plan of the play area which will then go back out to consultation. Copies of the flyers which show the proposal and allow for public comments have been left at the Magdalene shops, Magdalene Community Centre and Brunstane Primary along with a drop box to collect these completed forms as an alternative to sending them by mail. You can also find the survey and more details online here


Do you fancy getting involved in community growing? Check out Fresh Start:  Last weekend, it was a real pleasure to visit the fantastic community growing project in Magdalene Drive, just behind the garages  which has been going since April and is already hugely successful in getting people involved in growing together.  The Community Alliance Trust successfully applied for a Climate Challenge Fund grant to get them started with a community hut and raised beds. I even won a raffle prize!  I don’t know what it is yet, but I’m to pick it up from the White House today.  I hope it’s more of their lovely jam!


Craigmillar Books for Babies know lots about sharing songs and rhymes with babies and young children and are running a workshop at Moffat Early Years Campus Thursday 26 November 1pm-3pm. You can join them for a participative workshop on how to set up and establish a Rhymetime in any setting. Pick up tips on how to get parents involved, what to consider when planning a Rhymetime and what rhymes and songs are good for particular ages. Booking is required. For more information, click here: Book Free Tickets


Castleview Primary School has had an excellent follow through report from the school inspectors.  They don’t hand out ‘excellent’ at the drop of a hat!  This is one of the Council’s fabulous schools serving the Craigmillar area.


Tribe Porty are opening their doors for a Tribe Fest on 21 November. Workshops, tasters, and loads more. See here:


Is pavement parking a problem for you? Living Streets is a campaigning organisation looking for real life stories and experiences to use to make their case on behalf of pedestrians and people with mobility difficulties. Contact them on


A date for your diary: Meet the Funders Event on Thursday 3 December in Portobello Town Hall.  More here: : Portobello Community Council

I was at Portobello Community Council this week and heard about the fantastic volunteer-led project which provides beach wheelchairs at North Berwick so people with mobility difficulties can enjoy the beach with their families like everyone else. This would be fantastic at Portobello Beach and they are willing to lend their expertise to help anyone who wants to take this forward/  The project was started under the umbrella of their community centre, but the group are now setting up as a separate charity.  Find out much more here:


The next Portobello Market is next Saturday, 7 November in Brighton Park, just off Brighton Place, from 9.30 to 1.30. At this market many of our traders will be taking orders for your Christmas needs, so you can pick up at the December market. For full details of all traders and what they offer please visit the website: Please like out Facebook page:  Map:


home energy advisor from Home Energy Scotland will be based in the Craigmillar Medical Centre at the waiting room area until Friday 20 November. Home Energy Scotland is managed provides free and independent advice including managing fuel debt, information on grants and funding to improve insulation or install a new heating system and advice on how to get the most out of your current heating. Home Energy Scotland can also be contacted on Freephone 0808 808 2282 or you can check out their website for more information and handy energy and money saving tips here.


Lots of people I know have got involved in singing with choirs and it’s doing them a lot of good and research is showing just how.  Local choirs have ballooned in popularity and for good reason: singing is good for your health and social skills.  More here:


Just in case you didn’t know some of the hidden talent and expertise and opportunities to learn circus skills in Portobello see here:


Some of you might have noticed the new and bigger litter bins going up along the Promenade at regular intervals which most seem to have welcomed as an improvement.  However – there is one on the Promenade Terrace end, which locals think is not well placed and I am asking for a re-think on that one.


Have a good weekend!


Best wishes




Councillor Maureen Child | Labour Elected Member | Portobello/Craigmillar (Ward 17) | City of Edinburgh Council | City Chambers | High Street | Edinburgh | EH1 1YJ | Tel 0131 529 3268 | Mobile 07718 666 481| Twitter @MaureenChild1


p.s. My face-to-face Councillor Advice Sessions, or ‘Surgeries’, are usually every Monday at 5.30 pm in Castleview Community Centre, 76 Craigmillar Castle Avenue (Phone 661 4064) and then at 7 pm in Portobello Library, 14 Rosefield Avenue (Phone 529 5558).  Now also at Craigmillar Library, 101 Niddrie Mains Road, EH16 4DT, 1st Wednesday of the month, drop-in session 5pm-5.30pm, thereafter by appointment only up until 7.30pm. Please phone me on Direct Line 0131 529 3268 or Mobile 07718 666 481, or email to check availability, make an appointment or request a home visit.

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