Watch a video of Christmas Carols performed as an online orchestra by primary school musicians from Dunblane - https://youtu.be/TFd3Im89a6g available until 31st Dec. We hope you enjoy it and that it brings some much-needed joy to the town, as well as offering the young people what is now a rare opportunity to perform.
The Friends of Holmehill contacted the website team with an update about the new owners’ plans for Holmehill. Here is their email
We recently asked The Carman Family Foundation for an update as to what has happened over the last few month. The response from Bill Carman is below:
Over the last few months:
1. The Braeport meadow has been tilled and the seedling trees removed. 54 small-medium sized decorative trees have been planted in groups of 3, with 10 more (a bit bigger) to go. Some outlines of paths have been created - these will probably be finished with plastic matting and grass growing through the plastic.
2. The paths on the top have had leaves removed.
3. The paths going down to ground level have also been cleared to a reasonable state. We need to think of more permanent solutions.
4. The chip paths need an alternative surface - any ideas of what might look natural yet last for a few years? The weeds on either side have been dug out.
5. Some of the Scots pines have been eaten (rabbits?). They have been replaced and tubes now keep the rabbits out with wire mesh to keep the deer off them.
6. Around the grasses next to the tennis court we have planted a bamboo hedge.
7. Wire has been put back into the metal posts of the old fence to stop people tumbling down the hill
8. 150 longer tubes were supplied by the Woodland Trust to replace the short tubes.
Next year jobs include:
1. Planning for a pond at the bottom of the meadows
2. Moving the shed next to the red lodge (or getting a new hut) for storage of garden equipment.
3. Planting snowdrops in february.
4. We are in discussions with people on types of plants to put under the new trees on the meadow. We want colourful plants of all sizes which will attract pollinators and birds. All suggestions welcomed.
5. Next year, we will roundup the edges of the paths on the top in April.
6. Putting Up a chain barrier to stop people driving on to the grass on top.
7. A few more "nice" trees for around the perimeter of the grass on top.
8. 4 carved benches will be made this Winter, 3 representing each primary school, using the wood we took off the hill 2 years ago.
Someone who currently works with me will be at Holmehill for 2 days per week from now (ish).
Text drafted by Pete Bicheno, Glassingall Resident
SEPA has not taken the witness statements they originally promised and instead they “….are continuing to conduct other enquiries into the events …”
From the Stirling Observer 18.11.2020
“A man has denied destroying a bat roost and the nest of a wild bird while carrying out demolition of a house on Stagecoch tycoon Dame Ann Gloag’s Glassingall Estate.”
“…David Kerr, of Cumbernauld, pleaded not guilty at Stirling Sheriff Court on Friday 13th November to offences under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, the Conservation (Natural Habitats) Regulations 1994 and the European Communities Act 1972. “
Trial has been set for April 22nd.
Since the fire another demolition company has been on site and spent almost a month clearing up. The council granted permission for the demolition in retrospect.
Interestingly Dame Ann Gloag has put in for planning permission for a similar development at Beauly as she is proposing at Glassingall. See the Inverness Courier : 20.11.2020
Approval was granted on 01.12.2020 See the Inverness Courier:
Earlier text from July 2020
NEW Police launch wildlife crime probe at bus tycoon's estate following blaze Stirling Observer Article from 27 July 2020
Article below updated on 20 June 2020 - updates in Green
Some local residents on the Glassingall Estate sent a letter to Glassingall Estates Ltd in response to the demolition and burning of Glassingall House on the 11th and 12th of June. The full letter can be viewed here. A letter has also been sent to the Health & Safety Executive SEPA and the Council. SEPA has apparently responded and is now taking witness statements.
Glassingall Estates Limited is one of the companies in the Gloag portfolio. Dame Ann Gloag bought the estate over a year ago and a Pre Application Notification of Planning was submitted last year. This outlined a development of 135 chalets and an outdoor centre.
The local residents say that ‘the remains of Glassingall House appear to have materials looking awfully like asbestos lying around in the open in a fragile condition. Do not attempt to enter the area and please keep your children away. Asbestos is extremely hazardous and kills. People have been seen wandering around with their children within the fenced off area. This is a very bad idea. Please keep away’.
Here is a statement from Stirling Council
A Stirling Council spokesperson said: “We are aware of the demolition works at Glassinghall estate and can confirm investigations are underway.
“Demolition works of this nature are subject to statutory processes and require permission from the planning authority, in this case, Stirling Council. We can confirm no building warrant for demolition was requested from, or issued by, Stirling Council in relation to this work and we have taken immediate measures to ensure the site is safe.
“We are in discussions with the landowner regarding the submission of a building warrant to regulate the works already undertaken, and to cover the completion of the remaining unauthorised work.”
Here is a Tweet from Mark Ruskell MSP
NHS Forth Valley is now offering flu vaccinations to patients who will be aged 60-64 by 31 March 2021.
These will be held at the Albert Halls in Stirling from 7-10 December.
At risk patients who have missed previous clinics, plus those who are shielding and their households, are also invited to book an appointment.
Patients should phone 01324 614692 or 01324 616050 to book an appointment.
Due to a lack of resources, clinics will not be held at the Victoria Hall, but most Pharmacies, including both Bannerman's Pharmacies, are now also able to provide free NHS vaccines to eligible patients.
It was felt that most patients in this age group would be able to travel to Stirling, however, they also have the option to book an appointment at the local pharmacies if they prefer.
The Practice will also be offering opportunistic vaccinations to eligible patients if they are attending for other reasons, although we have only been allocated a small supply.
Practice Manager/eHealth Practice Champion, Dunblane Medical Practice
Direct Tel: 01786 820980
Dunblane Library will be open for select and collect, browsing bag and battery collection on
Thursday 1pm-5pm (24th Dec 10am-2pm)
Online catalogue stirling.gov.uk/libraries
These are by appointment only.
Staff will be available to take your calls during these hours.
What a great way to celebrate St Andrew's Day. The Frontline Festival Scotland is a new virtual gig, supported by 39 Scottish artists, which will be streamed over social media on 30th November.....and you're all invited!
The festival is free to watch with the aim of raising funds for 4 of Scotland's frontline charities.
* Scotland's Charity Air Ambulance
* Scottish Police Benevolent Fund
* Scottish Fire & Rescue Family Support Trust
* Scottish Ambulance Service Endowment Fund
Sign up for the festival via Facebook Events: https://business.facebook.com/events/353168125645100/ "
or just share the link https://business.facebook.com/events/353168125645100/
Our podcast is about exploring the journeys and personal experiences of people from all walks of life...with the hope that through the power of sharing their stories and the lessons they've learned, people listening will be inspired to dig a little deeper into their own.
Dunblane Area Maps – Update time!
Please complete the User Survey - https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/DunblaneMaps
The printed maps are running out, and need to keep up with local developments – e.g. the new trails on Sheriffmuir, new housing and road crossings etc.
Funds have been secured via ‘Paths for All’, from the ‘Smarter Choices Smarter Places Open Fund’, and the project is co-ordinated by volunteers through Dunblane Development Trust.
The new printed maps will be given to schools and public, and continue to be available online at Dunblane.info on the local walking, cycling, running pages. The station map posters will also be updated. The User Survey will provide information on how people use the maps, and help to update the Walking and Cycling Improvements report which highlights local issues.
The remaining 2016 Maps are now available from;
• ‘Weigh Ahead’ Dunblane High St
• Doune Information Centre (Post Office)
• Recyke-a-bike at Causewayhead
• Also some poster Index Street maps in A2 size are available – contact 01786 825741
You can read more about walking, cycling and running around Dunblane on this website here.
User Survey link : Survey link
QR code for survey :
Carbon Choices: Common-sense Solutions to our Climate and Nature Crises
by Neil Kitching
Coming from Scotland, host of the global 2021 climate conference, Carbon Choices tells the greatest story on planet Earth. How one group of sociable animals came to emit 40 billion tonnes (40,000,000,000) of an invisible gas each year, changing the chemistry of the atmosphere and the oceans, and steadily destroying the environment and life support systems that we depend on. We have unwittingly driven the world into a climate and wildlife crisis by the endless extraction of raw materials and our excessive consumerism - primarily by wealthier people and countries
Carbon Choices considers the psychology that drives us to buy more ‘stuff’ and whether this makes us happier. In plain language, it describes ten building blocks that provide us with a foundation to build sensible climate change solutions; and five common-sense principles to guide us in the decisions that we make.
By applying these principles to our daily lives – our diets, homes, travel, shopping and leisure - we can regenerate nature, improve our society, be healthier, happier and lead more fulfilled lives.
This popular science book concludes with a green action plan for government, business and individuals to make better Carbon Choices. The book will fill any gaps in your understanding of climate change and nature loss and lays out the solutions including a green action plan for government, businesses and individuals. It will motivate you to change your behaviour and maybe even inspire you to campaign to change the behaviour of businesses and government.
Available for £10 from Meldrum Newsagent, Dunblane Post Office and Weigh Ahead, or £5 e-book on kindle.
One third of all profits will be donated to rewilding projects. Further information is available at www.carbonchoices.uk
Murder Under the Microscope: A Personal History of Homicide
by James Fraser
Most murders are not difficult to solve. People are usually killed by someone they know, there is usually abundant evidence and the police methods used to investigate this type of crime are highly effective. But what about the more difficult cases, where the investigation involves an unusual death, an unusual killer, or is complex or politically charged? In these cases, bringing the accused before the courts can take many years, even then, the outcome may be contentious or unresolved.
In this compelling and chilling memoir, Jim Fraser draws on his personal experience as a forensic scientist and cold case reviewer to give a unique insight into some of the most notable cases that he has investigated during his forty-year career, including the deaths of Rachel Nickell, Damilola Taylor and Gareth Williams, the GCHQ code breaker.
Inviting the reader into the forensic scientist's micro-world, Murder Under the Microscope reveals not only how each of these cases unfolded as a human, investigative and scientific puzzle, but also why some were solved and why others remain unsolved or controversial even to this day.
‘Jim Fraser has been at the forefront of forensic science in the UK for decades... A superb story of real-life CSI.' Dr Richard Shepherd, bestselling author of Unnatural Causes
'Powerful... Fascinating' Independent
A new £1 million ‘Scotland Loves Local’ fund will provide grants of between £500 and £5,000 to hundreds of projects to promote town centre and online businesses.
The funding aims to support small scale improvements that will help motivate people to shop, eat and relax within their community whilst ensuring public health safety.
Grants can be put towards providing safe shopping information for residents and tourists, the installation of public health infrastructure such as protective screens, physical distancing markers, hand sanitising equipment and PPE.
Applications close November 25th. More info here : https://www.gov.scot/news/new-grant-for-local-projects/
The Community Climate Asset Fund (CCAF) is a £3.5 million Scottish Government fund, administered by Keep Scotland Beautiful, which provides capital funding for community-based organisations to reduce emissions and support a green recovery from COVID-19. Deadline 12 noon on Monday 9 November 2020
The four key criteria of the fund are:
- Climate Impact – Your assets should reduce greenhouse gas emissions in your community, and help you to raise awareness and understanding of climate change and encourage people in your community to adopt lower carbon ways of living.
- Community Benefit – Your assets should provide clear benefits to your community, including those beyond your own organisation.
- Deliverability – Your application should demonstrate that you can complete your project and spend your grant by 31 March 2021.
- Maintenance – Your application should demonstrate that you have an appropriate maintenance plan as well as the resources to ensure that this is achievable. T
The fund can support projects which fall under seven main headings:
- Energy efficiency measures in community buildings
- Equipment to support community food growing
- Electric vehicles and charging infrastructure for community-run car clubs
- Cycles and facilities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
- Electric bikes and charging infrastructure for community groups running existing climate change projects
- Equipment to reduce waste in your community
- Equipment to support an established community wood fuel scheme
Grants range between a minimum of £1,000 and maximum of £100,000.
Dunblane Community Council FoI Requests
DCC made two FoI requests to Stirling Council in relation to the handing of the Park of Keir planning application.
Provided below is part of the response letter from Stirling Council (the full letter is in the file)
Your request for information – FOI/14249 and FOI/14250
I refer to your requests for information, logged by us as FOI/14249 and FOI/14250 in which you requested the following information.
Please can you provide to me all emails, notes of telephone conversations and meetings and other communications between Stirling Council councillors and officers and their consultants and the applicants and their advisors, agents and supporters and also their consultants, from 20 January 2019 to today, in respect of the negotiations to achieve a "satisfactory conclusion of a planning obligation", as required by the Ministerial “Minded to Consent” decision on the Park of Keir appeal, published on Wednesday 30 August 2017.
Please can you provide to me all emails, notes of telephone conversations and meetings and other communications between Stirling Council councillors and officers and their consultants and advisors and Scottish Government politicians, officers and their consultants and advisors, from 20 January 2019 to today, in respect of the negotiations to achieve a "satisfactory conclusion of a planning obligation", as required by the Ministerial “Minded to Consent” decision on the Park of Keir appeal, published on Wednesday 30 August 2017.
The Council's Response?
The information provided by the Council was extensive (80+ files) but heavily redacted.
Stirling Council has launched a consultation about Dunblane's High Street under the Spaces for People Initiative
Based on an article on the DDT website
As part of the Spaces for People Initiative, Stirling Council is committed to protecting public health by ensuring there is space for people to physically distance in public places.
Physical distancing is key to limiting the spread of COVID-19 when travelling for essential journeys, taking exercise or visiting shops and businesses.
It is important that our town centre environment allows us to move safely when walking, cycling and wheeling (in a wheelchair or mobility scooter).
The £0.5m funding that the Council has secured from Sustrans can be used for:-
- Selective road closures using planters or cones;
- Re allocation of road space for seating;
- Re allocating road space for wider footways;
- Re allocating road space for cycle tracks;
- Re allocating parking and loading;
- Reduced speed limits and/or traffic calming measures;
- Cycle parking;
- Removal of barriers to open up constrained spaces and remove pinch points.
The Council's objective for Dunblane's High Street is to reduce traffic and calm the town centre traffic allowing us to create more space to support local businesses and provide safe space for people to pass either on foot or bike.
Residents and local businesses can now express their views on a number of potential projects across the Stirling area and suggest alternatives by visiting the Council's Spaces for People webpage