Contact the Elderly’s Dunblane group enjoyed a trip to Loch Katrine thanks to the fundraising efforts of one of its volunteers.

Bobby Lennox completed the ‘Grasmere Gallop’ in Cumbria earlier in the year to raise funds for his group to enjoy a summer outing. The volunteers and guests enjoyed an afternoon and boat trip at the popular Perthshire destination. Lorna Dunbar, Support Officer at Contact the Elderly, said:
“Bobby did a fantastic job to raise funds for this trip and we are so pleased to see everyone had such a lovely trip to Loch Katrine.”

Contact the Elderly organises free monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for older people who live alone. Volunteer drivers collect guests and accompany them for an afternoon tea in a volunteer host’s home. To find out more about volunteering with Contact the Elderly locally, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 01786 235034.                                                                                                                   

For further media information, please contact Suzanne Mackie on 0774385948 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Contact the Elderly is the winner of The Older People’s Project Award at The Herald Society Awards 2016 and The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Volunteering Award 2012. Having recently celebrated its Golden Jubilee, Contact the Elderly is the only national charity, which since inception, has focussed solely on relieving the acute loneliness and isolation of older people who live alone, without family, friends or other support networks nearby. The Contact the Elderly model is based on a simple yet very effective model: free, monthly tea parties for small groups of older people and volunteers within their community - which bring all ages together, develop fulfilling friendships and support networks, and give everyone something to look forward to.

Contact the Elderly currently has over 800 groups throughout England, Scotland and Wales, providing a regular, consistent and vital friendship link every month to over 6,000 older people. There are currently over 10,000 volunteers supporting the groups: volunteer drivers collect the older guests from their homes and accompany them to tea parties, while volunteer hosts hold the tea parties in their homes. As part of its continuing Power of Contact campaign to recruit more volunteers, Contact the Elderly aims by 2020 to double the number of isolated older people it supports.

A message from the RAGE Group re Park of Keir decision

Saturday 16th September 2017 at 10.45am. Please join us and invite any friends or family who care about saving Park of Keir

We are walking from the two communities Dunblane and Bridge of Allan, onto Park of Keir, we aim to come together at the top of Gallow Hill at about 11.30. The aims of the walk are to:-

* show our objection to the Housing and tennis centre plan
* raise awareness of what Scottish Governments decision could mean for the area
* enjoy the lovely landscape whilst it is still here.
* meet up with our fellow objectors. It will be nice to put faces to names. There are great views from the top.

Meet at Bridge of Allan station 10.45am or outside M&S car park, Dunblane 10.45am (M&S car park is private, please park elsewhere). There will be a walk leader at each end of the route if you are not sure which way to go.

Please wear appropriate clothes and footwear, paths on Park of Keir are muddy and uneven, there are stiles and fallen trees to negotiate. It should take approximately 40 mins to get there. You can return the same way or make a longer circular walk independently. No refreshments will be provided.

Please follow the Outdoor Access Code

See our Facebook page

Follow us on Twitter

For more information This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Flattening Dunblane’s Hills

Dunblane is a hilly place but otherwise suitable for everyday travel by bike within the town and those hills can be ironed out by electrifying the ride. Dunblane by Cycle, a Cycling UK affiliated community group, is working in partnership with Dunblane Development Trust to run an e-bike day on Thursday 12th October. Join us at the Braeport Community Centre where 4 local ebike suppliers/hirers will be on hand to demonstrate a range of models, provide information and lead short uphill rides. Further information

Decision from Scottish Government Website

Scottish Government's Notice of Intention

Scottish Reporter's Report on the Appeal

Reporter's Recommendations

10.221 Accordingly, I recommend that Scottish Ministers dismiss the appeal and refuse to grant planning permission in principle for the proposed development at Park of Keir.

10.222 However, if Ministers are minded to allow the appeal, I recommend that they grant planning permission subject to the conclusion of a section 75 agreement to secure education and affordable housing contributions in line with the provisions of Stirling Council’s Supplementary Guidance SG15 and SG16 respectively, and subject to the conditions attached to this report at Appendix 2. 

Timothy Brian Reporter

BBC Scotland Report

From Stirling Observer 300817 Scottish ministers have confirmed that they intend to grant planning permission for the tennis, golf and housing development which is backed by Judy Murray. Plans for a tennis and golf centre at Park of Keir in Dunblane have been approved in principle. The Scottish Government have confirmed that they intend to grant planning permission for the development - which will feature 12 tennis courts and a golf academy. The development, which has been strongly opposed by some residents living in the Dunblane and Bridge of Allan areas, will also include 19 houses, a hotel, multi-user sports pitch, museum and visitor centre. Kevin Stewart, the Minister for Local Government and Housing, said: “Having carefully considered all aspects of the planning report, I am minded to grant planning permission in principle for this development - subject to conditions and the conclusion of a planning obligation. “I have concluded that the development is of significant regional and national significance. It will bring strong benefits to Scottish sport, helping in the development of elite competitors, while also providing facilities for the community. There will also be economic benefits, both to the local area and more widely. “The next step is for the planning authority and developer to work together to agree to discharge the planning obligation. Once Scottish Ministers are satisfied, they will then be able to formally grant planning permission for the proposal.”

The decision was reached despite the Scottish Government planning reporter who considered the appeal saying some issues of concern raised by objectors were not enough grounds to refuse the application. The application had attracted 55 letters of comment, including from the Woodland Trust, and a Stop Hillside Houses Facebook group which was joined by almost 500 people.

Developers Arnbathie Developments and Dandara had appealed through the Scottish Government's planning appeals system against Stirling Council’s non-determination of their application. However, the appeal reporter decided any approval of the application would be premature given the council's 2016 Local Development Plan was currently the subject of an appeal. In his decision, appeals reporter Mike Croft said: "The project's contribution to housing supply at a time when that supply is clearly deficient weighs in its favour, but that benefit has to be seen against the loss of a greenfield site and the project's less than satisfactory public transport implications.

"Those points call into question its sustainability issues. The project is, in my view, premature in relation to the local development plan process, and the examination into the 2016 plan is well placed to take account of the need for more housing land and the extent to which Dunblane ought to expand on its south-eastern side, if at all." Mr Croft said the "internal components" of the project did not justify its rejection nor did concerns raised about infrastructure, such as education and health provision locally, and that the site was "readily available for development" and located in the 2014 Local Development Plan's core area. He added: "With a shortfall in the five-year effective housing land supply, they are important points in the project's favour. But in pure development plan terms, they are outweighed by the site's Green Belt location and the less than satisfactory public transport implications of the appeal project."

The Woodland Trust, which said this week it was "delighted" the appeal had been rejected, effectively safeguarding the woodland meantime, had objected strongly to the project claiming it would damage ancient woodland designated on Scottish Natural Heritage's Ancient Woodland Inventory as long- established woodland of plantation origin. However, Mr Croft said: I am not satisfied, however, that the project's inclusion of housing on what is now a dense, dark conifer plantation is in itself harmful. "Although it goes on to criticise the project for the absence of significant compensatory planting, it would be sufficient in my view, given the considerable extent of deciduous woodland that would remain within the appeal site, for a condition to be imposed on a permission to control its management and maintenance. Mr Croft also dismissed some objections from locals about overlooking of their houses after inspecting the site.


Dunblane businesses have been recognised for their hard work in brightening up the town. Sandy Mackay and Carolyn Murray, on behalf of local group Dunblane in Bloom, presented prizes to the Beech Tree Cafe, MacLean and Stewart Solicitors and Hairways. All three businesses were handed Mike Seal Trophies as reward for the stunning displays of colour on their shop fronts. The Beech Tree Cafe won Best Shop Front Display while the Most Improved Business Frontage trophy went to MacLean and Stewart. Hairways won the Best Hanging Basket trophy. Mr Mackay paid tribute to the hard work and creativity of all the businesses. He said:"Every year the businesses on the High Street do their bit to add to the work of Dunblane in Bloom to improve how our town looks. "I was very impressed by all the entries this year and I congratulate the winners for their hard work and commitment in making the most of their shop fronts. "I'm very grateful to George Haddock for acting as our photographer again this year."   Dunblane in Bloom have been working to improve the appearance of the town and surrounding areas. The projects involve planting beds at Smithy Loan and creating a rock garden and community garden by the Faerie Bridge.

The article from the Stirling Observer 230817

DiB 2017xx

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