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Issue 16 June 2013

posted 6 Jun 2013, 10:43 by Ian Holmes-Lewis   [ updated 6 Feb 2015, 11:27 ]
Saline and Steelend Community Development Trust
The Charity Commissioners are currently considering our application to establish a Community Development Trust for Saline and Steelend. 
A copy of the Constitution can be viewed on the community Council page of this site.  The purpose of the Trust is to assist with the implementation of some of the more ambitious projects in the Community Action Plan, particularly those that require the acquisition of land or property or the employment of staff. Already people are talking about acquiring Steelend Community Centre, which has been locked up out of use for several years, and adapting and running it meet local needs.  A meeting with a representative of Fife Council is being arranged. Can you see similar opportunities for community-run facilities and services?

In the meantime we are keen to build up membership of the Trust.  A membership application form will soon be available to download from this site or you can email to obtain it or get more information.

Once we have built up a membership of around 100 we will call an AGM and the founding trustees will stand down and be replaced by a new board of 12, two of whom will be nominated by the Community Council.

Saline and Steelend Flower Show
Dear Gardeners, Bakers and Florists – the Saline and Steelend Flower Show schedules are distributed (thanks in the main part to the Bulletin distribution network).   If anyone hasn’t received a copy and would like one please contact Sheila Travers 852249.    With some warmer days in the past fortnight it is wonderful to see the gardens come to life and show their colour and the vegetables starting to grow.

Saline Artist Opens Up Her Studio

Saline artist Liz Harvey will be taking part in the Forth Valley Open Studios event from 8-16
th June. It's an opportunity to come and have a look at her work, in the brand new studio behind Grange Cottage, on West Road. Daily demonstrations and refreshments are available.

  Opening times:
            Saturday 8th June, 10-5
            Sunday 9th, 11-5
            Mon 10th, closed
            Tuesday 11th & Wednesday 12th, 10-5
            Thursday 13th, closed
            Friday 14th & Saturday 15th, 10-5
            Sunday 16th, 11-5
Over 145 artists are taking part in this year's event, at over 80 venues in the Forth Valley area. For more information go to, or pick up a brochure from Saline Post Office.

Saline Environmental Group AGM
Saline Environmental Group's AGM is taking place in the Saline Community Centre at 7pm on 4th July (NOT 20th June, as published elsewhere).
The Environmental Group is one of Saline's longer-established community-based organisations and over the years has been involved in maintaining and improving the Glen and the pathway through it.  It also carried out the planting at the Glen entrance.  Creating new paths for walkers, cyclists and horse-riders has always been a high priority and obtaining a grant of £90,000 from the Big Lottery Fund earlier this year to construct Phase 1 of the Saline to Oakley path down to Kinneddar Park is a major achievement for the group. This success in obtaining BLF funding has also been instrumental in Fife Council receiving a large grant from Sustrans to construct Phase 2 of the path down to Oakley. The Environmental Group has also been responsible for the Community Futures consultation and the preparation of the Community Action Plan. This work has been highly-praised and similar exercises are now being carried out in other communities in West Fife.

 Over the last few months the opportunity has been taken to update the group's Constitution and to re-define its aims and objectives. The AGM will be an opportunity to endorse and adopt the new Constitution and to talk about new projects that the group might undertake.  Several long-standing members of the management committee have chosen to retire this year and we are looking for new members to take up positions on the committee.  If you are interested in influencing, supporting or serving, we hope you will be able to join us.

 To enable us to arrange seating, it would be helpful if you could advise your intention to attend by email to but of course you are welcome to just join on the night as well.

Drumming Group at The Miners Welfare
Following the success of Sambangra at the Family Fun Day in April, Ian Holmes-Lewis has started a drumming group, which currently has around twenty members & meets weekly, in Steelend Miners Welfare Club every Tuesday from 7pm. 
It's FREE!!!
  No experience is necessary, and all instruments are provided. The group is open to adults and children, although young children will need to be accompanied by an adult.
Sambangra has a start-up grant from Arts For Everyone, so for the meantime our costs are covered; in the future there may have to be a weekly charge to cover room-hire, so try it now, while it's free! 

Whether or not you think you might be musical, please come along and give it a go. If you have any questions, please contact Ian on 851855 or

Communications Group: Year One
When we heard about the surge in attendance at the Over 50s Keep Fit - after it was featured on the front page of the community web-site - the Communications Group realised that our efforts might be having a positive effect. has been running for about fourteen months. Our total expenditure on this resource so far is just under fourteen pounds, so if the site is producing real benefits to the community, it’s fair to say it represents good value.

Eighty-six people have registered on the web-site, and most of those registrations will represent households with several members. Not everybody who uses the web-site bothers to register, and we get visitors from France, Spain and the USA. Registration gives the option of a link, sent by email, to the online version of the bulletin, and so far 71 people have signed up. The numbers suggest that many more people than this are visiting the site to read the E-Bulletin, which has more space for pictures and sometimes contains articles not included in the printed version.

The Saline First Responders were, appropriately enough, the first local group to respond to the offer of their own page. There are now eleven separate groups with a presence on the web-site, as well as several pages with important local news and information about meetings, funding opportunities and local initiatives, etc. One of the things we’d like to do better is getting groups to make use of the web-site’s calendar to announce meetings and co-ordinate activities.

The Communications Group has achieved a lot in its first year, including taking over production and distribution of the Bulletin, applying for funding and initiating projects to improve the quality of life for our community. None of this would have been possible without the hard work and support of a tireless team of volunteers, to whom we must say a hearty thank you!
Community Council Matters
May’s meeting focussed on four main topics; opencasting, the Saline Bonfire, the proposed new house at Killernie Farm and housing off Main Street, Saline. The future of the bonfire is covered elsewhere in more detail and the following notes cover the other key issues.

Alan Kenny gave a presentation on the restoration of the Comrie Colliery site that has been derelict since 1986. Land engineering services is a new company set up to remediate sites like this. It is estimated that 75% of the bing will be moved off site as the material is suitable for road and path construction, and the company will make materials available for community use. The remaining 25% is on fire and will need to be treated separately. 

LES will be removing 750,000 tons of coal to subsidise the expensive restoration works. A royalty is paid on each ton extracted and a Trust has been set up to disburse funds to the communities around the site. To date, £45,000 has been banked and the trust will be seeking applications soon.

Some people raised the question of the Blair House site and Alan indicated that LES had expressed an interest but had found Scottish Coal’s liquidator unhelpful. The suspicion is that there is a preferred buyer whose proposals might not be supported by the community. Accordingly, the Community Council has written to Fife Council expressing concerns and suggesting the preferred way forward (see Minewatch page).

It was noted that Fife Council’s Transportation Service had objected to the application for a house at Killernie Farm. This provoked considerable discussion and most of those present felt that there would actually be less traffic generated and, as the house was required for a farm worker, a letter of support should be sent to Fife Council. Transportation had suggested that a wall at the entrance from Bridge Street could be removed but it was felt that the wall is an important part of the character of the village. Demolition of the wall would also entail the removal of two mature trees and would make little difference to visibility.

Older readers will recollect the opposition to housing off and to the rear of Main Street and the odd decision of a Scottish Government reporter to find it suitable. The consent has now lapsed and an application for renewal has been submitted. At the meeting it was felt that the site is an important part of the village character that is now widely used for recreation and that there seems little chance of it being developed in the foreseeable future. Accordingly, it was agreed that the community would write formally to Fife Council to object.

Everyone is welcomed to Community Council meetings and the next one will be in Saline Community centre at 7.30 on Tuesday 25 June.

Keep Fit No More
The Council run Over 50's Keep Fit Class, which has been operating on a Friday morning for  over 6yrs, has been withdrawn. 
It is very disappointing, as the feature last year in the Bulletin brought several new members who hadn't known of its existence.  The council quoted lack of participants as the main reason (along with reorganisation on their part).  

Once again, Saline loses out to other areas of the Dunfermline district, and it is one less event occurring in an under-used Community Centre.  If we are not careful, we will eventually lose our Community Centre through lack of use.  If there are any enterprising Keep Fit instructors out there who would like to start a similar keep fit venture, then no doubt a group could be got going again.

Our Community First Responders
A Community First Responder is a member of the public who volunteers to help their community by responding to medical emergencies while the ambulance is on its way.  All volunteers receive specialist training and equipment so that they can provide an early intervention before the arrival of the professional ambulance crew.
Anyone who wishes to help their community can volunteer and no previous medical experience is necessary, although you will need a caring attitude and the ability deal with potentially distressing situations. The Scottish Ambulance Service operates more than fifty Community First Responder schemes across Scotland.

To become a volunteer first responder you must be:
     at least 18 years old
     able to demonstrate and maintain a level of fitness to meet the role
     an effective communicator with good interpersonal skills
     able to demonstrate logical approach
     work under pressure, yet stay calm
     have a desire to learn
     reside or work in the area in which the scheme is based
     complete a criminal records check (Enhanced Disclosure Scotland check)
     have some first aid knowledge (not essential)

Saline First Responders cover Blairhall, Comrie, Oakley, Carnock, Gowkhall, Steelend and outlying areas.   There are no set shifts, you chose when you can provide some cover.   We receive monthly training sessions from the Ambulance Service.  

We are really struggling for volunteers - WE REALLY NEED YOU! If you are interested in becoming a Community First Responder, you should contact Hilary Warnock at or on 852797.

Craft and Chatter Returns!
The craft group will meet on a Thursday 10.00am-12.00 noon at Shieldbank Coffee Shop and the last Friday of the month 7.00-9.00pm. If lifts are needed, please telephone Jackie Kerr on 851162. If anyone can also offer lifts on either day can they please also contact Jackie on the same number. 

The long table in the Coffee Shop will be reserved for the group at these times and the group will start at its new venue on Thursday 20 June.

Saline and District Heritage Society
The snow earlier in the year prevented the planned geophysical survey of the Glebe Field from taking place. The latest news is that it will now be undertaken by Dr Alan Calder of the Edinburgh Archaeological Field Society. The proposed date is 13 July. Let's hope all goes well this time!

Our AGM took place on 29 May with a reasonable attendance. John Crane gave an interesting address on the Barrowman Plough. He told us that there is now an original plough within the village undergoing restoration. It had been found in Wales and brought up recently. Sandy Carstairs is doing remedial work on it at the moment.

We took the decision to make our research for next year's museum exhibition to be The First World War since it will be the hundredth anniversary of the outbreak of the War (please see below for information on this year's exhibition).

The Mini-Museum in the Old Session House at the Church will open on 8 June with the theme of Local Industries. Thereafter it will open Wednesdays 10.00am to 12.00 noon and Sundays 11.30am to 1.00pm until September.

There are still a few places left for our free bus trips. Have a day out with your friends - New Lanark Heritage Centre on 3 August and East Lothian Farming and Mining Museums on 14 September. Children are welcome provided they are accompanied by an adult. Phone Jane on 852677 to book a place.

Wind Turbine Update
The developer of Blairadam wind farm project, Partnership for Renewables (PfR), presented a display in the Community Hall in Saline on 20th May. It showed the eleven 110m turbines which PfR will submit planning permission for this summer. As at previous exhibitions by developers a parallel exhibition organised by the Wind Turbine Discussion Group gave an overview of large turbine projects around Saline. 

Partnership for Renewables is also the developer for the Devilla Forest wind farm project. Initial measurements have shown that the site is less windy than initially thought which is slowing down progress of the project.
The next Wind Turbine Discussion Forum at Saline Golf Club is on Wednesday 19th June at 7.00pm. All are welcome.

Planning Application
The developer of the proposed 10 houses to be built to the north of Main Street Saline has applied for a 2-year extension to his original application that was approved in 2010. About 100 objections from the village were lodged on the original application as this green field site is used by dog walkers and horse riders.  

If anyone wants to comment on this application, it is suggested they e-mail Mr David Shankland at The reference is 13/01241/FULL and details can be found on

Church News
Christian Aid Week: Thank you to all who supported the Wednesday 15th May event when £750 was raised - further donations are still coming in so the final total will be advertised at a later date.  Well done to all concerned.

Lilac Event: Saturday 8th June 10am -12 in the Church Hall. New Clothes, Tombola, Stalls, Refreshments, etc.

Coffee Morning in the Church Hall: Saturday 27th July 

Flower Festival in the Church: Thursday 22nd, Friday 23rd, Saturday 24th August. The theme is Our Community, showcasing the wide variety of groups who enhance the quality of life in this area.  Further information is available from Ada Cooper (852209).

Holiday Club in the Church premises (Theme: Space Academy), for primary school age pupils:  August 5th-9th    every morning 10.00 - 12.30.  Further information and registration forms will be available at the end of term service.  Children of primary school age with Saline connections who don't attend Saline school are also welcome.  

Earthquake Felt in Saline
334 years ago next month, an earthquake rocked Dunfermline.  An old manuscript mentioned in Dr Ebenezer Henderson’s ‘Annals of Dunfermline’, records that "a verie seveer schoke of an earthquak" was felt particularly sharply in Saline on 10th July, 1679, severely disrupting local spelling.

Although several hundred earthquakes are detected each year in the UK, most are too faint to be felt by humans, and only ten fatalities from British earthquakes have ever been documented. Comparatively few earthquakes have their epicentre in Scotland.The strongest ever recorded was a magnitude 5.2 (‘can cause damage of varying severity to poorly constructed buildings. At most, none to slight damage to all other buildings. Felt by everyone.                              Dr Ebenezer Henderson                             Casualties range from none to a few’*), in 1880, centred                                                                        in Argyll.

The most recent significant Scottish quake was on the 18th of May this year (magnitude 2.9). reportedly it was ‘felt across the Scottish Highlands’ – did the earth move for you?

*description from the Richter scale of earthquake severity

Forthcoming Meetings and Events:
Saline School Events
School Sports Day and Family BBQ, June 7th
Saline Nursery and Graduation Party, Monday 24th June at 9.00 am
Leavers Service,Thursday 27th June at 9.30am in Saline Church
School finishes at 12.30 on Friday June 28th with the P7s ringing the old school bell.

Steelend Club
Domino and pool competitions every Friday from 9.00pm

Drumming Group (at Miners' Welfare Club)
Tuesdays 7pm - 9pm

Saline Church Hall
Every Thursday 6.00-7.30pm

Every Thursday 7.30pm-9.00pm

Highland Dancing Classes
Tuesdays 4.00pm-5.00pm: Saline Church Hall
Thursdays 6.30pm-8.00pm: Saline Church Session Room

Carnock Community Centre:
116th Fife Scout Group
Beaver Colony 
Every Friday, 6pm-7.30 pm 
Cub Pack 
Every Thursday, 6.30pm-8pm
Scout Troop 
Every Thursday, 7.30pm-9pm
Explorer Unit 
Every Thursday, 7.30pm-9pm 
The Group meets in Carnock Community Centre, Camps Road, Carnock. 
Open to both boys and girls.

Saline Community Centre
Community Council Meeting
Tuesday 25th June 
7.30 pm, Saline Community Centre

Saline Environmental Group
AGM, 7.00pm, 20th June

Adult Badminton
Mondays 7.45pm
Wednesday 1.30pm and 7.30pm
Beginners welcome

Saline Smilers (Toddler Group) 
Tuesdays 9.30am-11.30am during school terms

Saline Golf Club
Wind Turbine Discussion Forum
7.00pm, 19th June

Shieldbank Coffee Shop
Craft and Chatter
Thursdays 10.00am-12.00 noon
Last Friday of month 7.00-9.00pm

                This community bulletin produced by Saline, Steelend & Communities Communications Group