Labour success in Falkirk Council Elections

Labour has once again returned 14 councillors in Thursday’s Council Elections. This makes Labour the largest party in the Council. The whole team and their supporters were delighted with the result. Congratulations to all of those returned and in particular to Rosie Murray and Joan Paterson who are new to the role.

Those returned were as follows:

Bo’ness and Blackness – Adrian Mahoney

Grangemouth – Allyson Black and Joan Paterson

Denny and Banknock – Jim Blackwood

Carse, Kinnaird and Tryst – Craig Martin and Charles MacDonald

Bonnybridge and Larbert – Linda Gow

Falkirk North – Craig R. Martin and Pat Reid

Falkirk South – Dennis Goldie and Gerry Goldie

Lower Braes – Alan Nimmo

Upper Braes – John McLuckie and Rosie Murray

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Falkirk is the UK’s most popular town

This is an extract of an article which  was printed in METRO on Wednesday July 28th:

Falkirk has come out top as the UK’s most popular town.

A migration monitor says residents are the most likely in the UK to shift to another address in the area rather than leave the central Scotland town.

More than 66% of moves are local, the highest total in the UK.

Rosemary Rodgers of reallymoving.com said that the Falkirk success was down to the proximity to commercial and retail hubs.

She said “This indicates strong community ties and a healthy local economy… Falkirk [is] within the spheres of influence of Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Boasting the world’s only rotating boat lift – not to mention a pineapple-topped house – the Falkirk area has a population of more than 97,000. A regeneration campaign declares: “My future’s in Falkirk.”

Council leader Craig Martin said: “We have great housing, schools, shops, attractions like the Falkirk Wheel and the Hippodrome Cinema, wonderful parks and great leisure facilities. The Falkirk Council area sits right at the heart of Scotland with unbeatable transport links to the rest of the country. And, of course, very friendly people.

Falkirk top in enterprise contest

Falkirk has been named the most enterprising place in Scotland as part of a UK-wide competition.

The region was recognised for its “My Future’s in Falkirk” campaign – a 10-year initiative to tackle job losses in the petrochemical industry.

Runners-up included Borders College, Interactive Tayside and Stirling Business Panel.

The competition, run by Enterprise UK, is now in its sixth year. Falkirk was crowned winner of the Scottish heat.

Falkirk Council said developments in the area include a new 33-acre business park, regeneration of town centres and “innovative partnerships” between education and business.

Economic challenges

Competition judge Brian McVey, from Scottish Enterprise, said: “The success of ‘My Future’s in Falkirk’ demonstrates what can be achieved if people and organisations work together to improve the social and economic prospects of their community.

“We are confident that their great example will encourage other communities to do more to support the development of entrepreneurship, which will be critical in responding to the economic challenges we face in future.”

In August, Falkirk Council will go up against the other 11 regional finalists from around the UK for the Enterprising Britain 2010 national title.

The overall winner will then go on to represent the UK at the European Enterprise Awards in 2011.

Adrian Mahoney, convener of economic development for Falkirk Council, said the prize was a “fantastic achievement” for Falkirk.

“We are delighted to have been recognised for our work in bringing change to the area, creating jobs and transforming the community,” he said.

“Our initiative doesn’t stop here though – we will continue to champion enterprise and look forward to the UK finals of the competition.”

*Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/10632093

Work Starts on Helix Project

The Helix project has given the go ahead for work to start on a programme of path upgrades.

Public realm specialists Land Engineering have been contracted to carry out footpath improvement works in the Abbotshaugh woodland area near Bainsford and Langlees in Falkirk.

Local residents can look forward to improved path surfaces, the removal of weeds and vegetation, and improved drainage. This will improve the surroundings and make the paths easier and safer to use. The initial paths contract is the first step in a programme of major improvements which will transform the Abbotshaugh woodland area.

It also represents the first physical activity on the Helix site which is set to be developed over the next three years into a high quality greenspace for Falkirk and Grangemouth. The path works will take approximately eight weeks to complete and focus on two of the Abbotshaugh woodland’s major pathways. One path runs adjacent to the Bainsford Burn whilst the other runs alongside the River Carron.

Councillor Craig R Martin that sits on the Helix board on behalf of Falkirk council says:

“It has been a long time coming, but this exciting first step into the Helix project will delight the public. Many of whom have been and are still involved in the creation of this project. I know there have been keen members of the public out with the Helix staff on these paths who have given their knowledge and thoughts on how to improve the area, and I am positive they and others will see the benefits when this first phase is complete”.

“The next 3 years will be exciting seeing the area improve bit by bit, I can’t wait for the day the last workmen downs tools and the public can enjoy all the new facilities for themselves”.

Deadly Drug on Falkirk’s Streets

The earlier article on Safe Base in Falkirk highlights how we are working towards safety in the town centre.

The recent tragic deaths due to the use of the illegal substance Mephedrone have alerted us to the major risk that this legal substance is.  The Safe Base is already alert to this drug through the paramedic working within the safe house, and to date two males have presented who had taken the legal high one male stayed in hospital for three days while the other was released the following day.  They came to the base with two females and close and careful questioning of all four resulted in local information of supply and distribution of this drug being passed to police, this highlighted a new risk in the town centre.

Councillor Charles MacDonald said “We should be pressuring the current Scottish Government to bring in laws urgently to deal with this threat to the lives of our young people, there should be no politicking or pontificating but real action now!  Funding should also be made available to have the Safe Base available all year round not just at busy periods and we will make a case for this to the Government as this intervention alone has shown the importance of the base to the residents of Falkirk”.