Draft Minutes of Colonsay Community Council

Meeting held on 28th January 2020 at 6:30pm

Councillors Present : Keith Rutherford (KR), Helen Mann (HM), David Hobhouse (DH), Alex Howard (AH), Kevin Byrne (KB), Liz McNicoll (LM), Richard Buttrick (RB)

Members of community present: Jan Brooks; Sue Dance, Donald MacNeill (minute secretary)





1. Apologies

Jane Howard (JH)





2. Minutes of last meeting

Minutes of last meeting not formally approved

Carry over




3. Declarations of interest

None Declared at this stage of the meeting

4.Matters arising from previous minutes.

Community Council Website.


Oban Hostel .

KB expressed concern that parents may be being pushed into allowing their children to come home on a Friday ferry in anticipation of no Saturday flight, thus missing out on schooling. After robust discussion it was decided to monitor the situation.



Almost finalised.


Service Point Funding .

Dannie Onn has written to the council to ask for clarification of the situation. Sue Dance reported that CCDC were actively investigating how to enhance the service and LM made suggestions as to how the service point could be more user friendly.



No further progress.




It was remarked from the floor that Calmac had reinstated a hitherto cancelled ferry. This should be noted as up to this point a cancellation decision had been regarded as irrevocable even when weather conditions improved dramatically.


AH stressed the need for advance booking, even foot passengers, to confirm need.


Concern was expressed that there have only been 5 Monday ferries this winter.

KB to post minutes.


No action.








DH to progress.





Waiting for Dannie's report.







DH to e mail area manager to thank him for more flexible approach.




5.Letters to A&B council

A letter has been sent regarding the service point (see above)

It was decided that dialogue should be established regarding the threat to the air service. See next item.





6.Air Service

KB and AH provided some background as they understood it from informal discussion. The present tender for this service ends in May and at present the tendering process has stalled.


It was felt that diminution or cancellation of the service would be catastrophic for the Island. HM, speaking as a parent, said she would leave the Island if her children were unable to get home at weekends. It was also felt it would inhibit families with young children from coming to live here.


Concern was expressed that the Community Council were not being kept updated on this very serious matter.


KB said that Moira Kerr, a freelance journalist who has written previously about Colonsay was keen to give the matter some publicity. This was felt to be a good idea.


KR wondered if we should be contacting Robin Currie (councillor).

















AH to speak to Moira Kerr.


JH to contact Robin and establish communication with A&B.




7.Community Fund

RB reported that the sub-committee had recommended a grant of £2000 to COHT for production of a historical booklet and

Up to £500 to George Leppard as a contribution towards a specialist piece of equipment for tv installation and repair services.

Both were approved by the Council.


Feedback from Sub-Committee

Various suggestions were made by the sub-committee to make the application process clearer, these are outlined in the appended report.


RB will prepare amended guidelines for the council to consider at the next meeting.


DH proposed we thank Marine Harvest for their continued support.


HM suggested we advertise fund to attract new bids. This will be done after the next meeting.















RB to emend guidelines.






8. Planning

AH declared interest.

Colonsay Estate have applied to build a modular house in Scalasaig.


It was noted that this may well provide a useful exemplar for the wider community and Alex is happy for people to see the building. Apparently it comes with the TV attached to the wall!








9. A.O.C.B




Heating Oil.

RB had been approached by a concerned user regarding:

•  Irregular Supply

•  Cost

•  Future Supply

Of oil.


Brogans had tried to come but were prevented by ferry cancellation.


Cost is not felt to be within CC control


AH had spoken with Brogans who assured him supply would continue.



RB suggested the council need a newsletter.

HM will deal with this.



KR was concerned that an initiative by Calmac to introduce different rates of ticket prices would impact unfairly on Colonsay.

It was felt that these were being introduced on busy routes to encourage traffic to be more evenly spread across numerous daily sailings…not something that Colonsay suffers from, and that Colonsay shouldn't be affected.





















12. Date of Next Meeting.

4 th March 2019 @ 6:30pm

































Colonsay and Oransay Community Fund (Second Round of Awards)


Colonsay Community Council Sub-committee – Chair's Final Report to CCC


The CCC Sub-committee COGF of local residents who volunteered to review the latest round of applications to the COCF has met 5 times since the beginning of November, with at least 5 of the volunteers present at each meeting. The panel of volunteers has reviewed 5 applications, and raised questions with applicants via email and in person, notably when Sarah Hobhouse twice attended subcommittee meetings to answer the panel's questions about the CTMG application for funding support of live music at ceilidhs, and when a member of the panel took questions from the subcommittee to George Leppard. Notes of the 5 meetings are available from the subcommittee Chair on request.


In December the following recommendations from the subcommittee were presented to the CCC and approved:


(a) Application by the Colonsay Village Hall Committee (CVHC) for £2,500 towards the cost of replacement windows for the hall.


The sub-committee recommends that an unconditional award of £2,500 be made to the Colonsay Village Hall Committee.


The sub-committee supported a return by Colonsay Village Hall Committee to this fund at a later stage if necessary.



(b) Application by Colonsay Tourism Marketing Group (CTMG) for £4,000 to meet the cost of providing support for live music at the summer season ceilidhs.


The sub-committee recommends that an award of £4,000 be made to the Tourism Marketing Group. The award should be conditioned to cover two years; £2,500 in the first year and £1,500 in the second, drawn down separately. The conditions should also include that the uptake must be monitored and reported to the Community Council and that unused contributions will be returned.


(c) Application by CTMG for £1,500 as a contribution towards the beach cleaning initiative for its next five year phase. (This is a modified version of the original application)


The sub-committee recommends that an unconditional award of £1,500 be made to the Colonsay Tourism Marketing Group.


The remaining two applications to the COCF were reviewed further by the subcommittee in January and the following conclusions and recommendations reached:


(d) Application by the Colonsay and Oransay Heritage Trust (COHT) for £4,350 to produce an illustrated booklet introducing the history of the islands.

The sub-committee raised a concern that alternative sources of funding could have been better considered, and subsequently the COHT proposed that it contribute £500 from its reserves, reducing their request from COCF to £3850. Following further consideration the subcommittee concluded that a limited award was appropriate.


The sub-committee recommends that an award of £2,000 be made to the Colonsay and Oransay Heritage Trust.

The sub-committee understood that this would sufficient for an initial print run of the booklet, and that income raised from sales should be sufficient for a further print run if needed.



(c) Application by George Leppard to meet the cost of specialist equipment for the installation of digital satellite TV.


A challenge for the subcommittee with this application was in assessing the potential scale of the community benefit from new digital equipment needed to service a new generation of satellite set top boxes. George Leppard gave helpful answers to questions from the review panel, and the sub-committee reached the following decision by majority decision rather than consensus.


The sub-committee recommends that a partial award be offered to George Leppard of 50% of the cost of the specialist SkyQ meter only, up to a maximum of £500.


The subcommittee also offered the following observations and feedback on the developing process for the COCF:


•  The guidance could include that applications from individuals would be welcome – provided that they show a community benefit.

•  There is potentially a need for business support loans and small-scale funding to allow new businesses to establish.

•  The guidance might be improved to better capture the contribution from the applicants in terms of voluntary work.

•  Applications could be improved by providing additional guidance to applicants (where necessary) before the sub-committee is set up.


R Buttrick

Chair COGF SubcomCouncillors Present : Keith Rutherford, Helen Mann, Jane Howard, Richard Buttrick, Alex Howard. Liz McNicholl

Members of community present: Dannie Onn; William Joll; Sheena Nisbet; Chris Nesbit; Fiona Grieve: Callum Hay; Clare Hay; Jane Rose, Jan Binne,





1. Apologies

David Hobhouse





2. Declarations of interest

To be taken as they occur





3. Minutes of last meeting






4.Matters arising from previous minutes.

Island Champions:


Noted from Dannie Onn: Not clear if Dannie Onn's role as island champion will be refilled after his retirement. A review of the Island Champions program is underway, and conclusions are expected within the next few months





5.a Air Service

Airport Staffing


Chris Nesbit updated the CCC on the situation with jobs for Fire/Radio cover at the airport. Only 4 jobs are available going forward, apparently to simplify employment structure and control costs. 2 people are transferring for a trial period to new jobs from previous roles. One further job has been filled, and the other job is hopefully being taken. Inflexible employment arrangements create complications and difficulties, making jobs unattractive and difficult to work with. Alternative employment options have been rejected by ABC


By report, Coll airport staff not taking new jobs. Apparently air service is running as a charter service. Application deadline for new jobs is 4 th February.


No feedback from Iain MacAllister (Island Champion) from question at October CCC meeting


AH to write with aid of C Nesbit to ABC.


JH to contact Coll council


JH to check with Ian MacAllister









5 b.Ferry Service

JH now retiring from Community Board


Encouraging that CalMac seems to be trying to run services even in bad weather.


Monday service seems to be better with Isle of Mull.


Question: would Calmac winter timetable adaptable if no air service for children?


Answer: Strong resistance from Calmac to be expected and process slow, ie year plus lag in timetable changes. Calmac winter services severely constrained by overhaul program; difficult to argue for/justify for new sailings;

No new actions






6. Recycling & Refuse

Noted: There is still no battery recycling


Food Waste Recycling:


Noted from William Joll: Information on Food Waste Recycling ask WJ or Roz Jewell; Caddies are available; No waste in Ridan or Maturation Bins.


Noted regarding kerb side recycling – all recycling can go in one bag. Timetable of collections is available in hard copy from Service Point


Strong support for permanent retention of alternative recycling facilities at quarry, particularly for benefit of summer visitors.

KR to check with George on battery recycling








7. Community Fund.

Noted, in absence of CCC Treasurer, from Dannie Onn that Hall has made partial drawdown of Community Fund Grant


Noted that there is interest in a new round for the Community Fund.


David Hobhouse to be asked chair next round COCF, and if he is not available Helen Mann offered to chair.


Aim is for next round during March.



HM to discuss chair with DH






8. Head Teacher and other public service vacancies.



Kilchattan School Head Teacher Recruitment


Noted from Helan Mann: Request from Kilchattan School Parents Council to do another round of interviews; alternative if post not filled is shared head. ABC to notify of chosen option by 31/1/20. School House is to be upgraded; Contractor identified.



GP Recruitment


Noted from Jan Binnie: Locum GPs arranged for interim after end of March until post filled.

1 st round interest but no applications. 2 nd round in progress but will take time.



No new actions


No news






10. New MOWI Fish Farm

New MOWI Fish Farm – info shared with Keith Rutherford as Convener.


No formal consultation started by MOWI yet.


Plan shows proximity to shore near Cable Bay


Meeting expressed strong concerns about impact on environment and tourism. Serious concerns about purity of water in the Strand, which is SSSI, and impact oyster farm.


While current Fish Farm impact acceptable, new “proposal” not acceptable per large majority at meeting as environmental impact would be large and it would also undermine key tourism industry.


It is understood that MOWI Housing project not linked not to new Fish Farm.




Mobile Phone Tower at Machrins.


Noted from Alex Howard: EE has emergency services network contract for UK. South Kilchattan is mobile phone black spot. Initial location unacceptable for new mobile phone tower as it was in middle of Machrins, but planning permission given without consultation. Letters to land owners across Scotland threatening action. Delay in process hoped to allow sensible negotiation and ultimate location of tower in region of coast guard hut.



JH to consult DH and then write to MOWI expressing community concerns





AH to continue to investigate the progress of the mast.




11. Planning Applications

None advised





12. AOB






KB – Can Calmac put up notices that it is illegal to idle engines?


Noted that engine idling is illegal on a public road


KB - Is Colonsay Emergency Plan to be updated to cover Coronavirus?


Noted per Jan Binne - Health Board area wide plans being formulated.


DO – National Islands plan now available online




DO – Campervans policy – existing policy not to encourage campervans – one future plan for former Baptist Manse includes parking for campervans – CCDC to provide further information on proposal


Noted that campervans are allowed on Colonsay if they have prearranged place to park off public road



KB to write to Calmac on behalf of council about notice on engine idling

13. Next Meeting

Tuesday 10th March 2020 at 18:00





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