Brewing New Life report



FCI Report Launch Meeting, 4 April 2012, 4.30 -6.00

Canal Centre, Lochrin Basin


A high energy, well attended, focused launch to the Report on the FCI Vision Day findings – the Vision Day held in February in Tollcross Community Centre.

Pat Bowie, the Chair of FCI, led the meeting, and whole-heartedly welcomed everyone in the pleasingly big turn-out – there were 35 in attendance.

Pat, Stan, Gerry and Emma - members of the Steering Group - spoke to the four areas covered in the Report – Housing, Culture and Leisure, Economic, Environment. The gathered and recorded ideas/thoughts of the Vision Day were appreciated and applauded. Jonathan Riddle gave a clear, enthusiastic presentation on the Forth Canoe Club’s position and hopes for the future. Lorraine McAuley of the Scottish Canoe Association supported Forth’s idea for a new home on the site as Canoe Scotland have plans to develop a Centre of Excellence, and Canals offer good spaces for training for competition.


Following this, discussion and comments from attendees were invited. There were reps from several Stakeholders and support was voiced by Dunedin Canmore Housing Association, Garvald, the Cockburn Association, DTAS and the Scottish Canoe Association. Our strong positive rapport was congratulated as being unusual and refreshing, and a question was asked about how we achieved this! Our focus on building relationships, bringing ideas – not fighting set ones, our staying realistic and looking for design solutions within an urban project, and our aim of injecting Life into the Planning were mentioned by Pat, Emma and Stan – our Charm and Wit being thrown in for good measure…

Cllr. Andrew Burns and MSP Sarah Boyack were present. Sarah supported our acknowledgement that we are looking at an Urban Area, but one that needs to keep a “human scale” focus. She appreciated our getting involved in the early stages and emphasised the importance of keeping everyone updated with developments. (We have a comprehensive and expanding Database, a new Website, regular Steering Group meetings and plan to hold or be part of regular Community events.)

There was also representation at the meeting from Tollcross CC; Merchiston CC; Active Enquiry; the Adult Leaning Project; Tollcross Community Centre; Sow And Grow Everywhere; Edinburgh Canal Society; the Parents and Pregnancy Centre and Local Developers, and several apologies from interested parties had been sent by email.

Stan thanked the Scotmid for its support in paying for the printing of the Report, and mentioned that they were happy to work with Developers on a retail units in the area - bringing “life” and employment. (It is historically an important area for the Co-op, as this was the area where they were Founded.) Stan also thanked the Committee at Tollcross Community Centre who had funded the Vision Day in February.


Some Next Steps –

*we plan to work with the forthcoming Local Elections e.g. flagging-up to local residents their potential for questioning of prospective candidates re. their visions for the Canalside development;

*we plan to keep developing our relationships with Stakeholders/Council/Developers;

*we plan to explore Funding – for expansion of FCI, and our potential for leverage to attract social Funding (to bring to the table in discussions with Council/Developers etc);

*we plan to support the Allotment development with “Sage” and Grosvenor Developments Ltd., and the Canoe Club’s search for suitable premises


The meeting ended with copies of the Report being offered, much conversation between attendees and the building up of numbers for the 6.00p.m. meeting hosted by FCI – between Allotment supporters and Kathryn VandenBerg, the development worker with Sage.





City of Edinburgh Council proposal to buy Fountainbridge site November 2011

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