Councillor Caroline given leading role
Blairgowrie representative to oversee education
Blairgowrie Community Market returns to the Wellmeadow this Saturday and organisers have attracted a number of stallholders to the popular event.
The market takes place from 10am until 3pm in the Wellmeadow.
New Blairgowrie business Flourish Plants will be there with a variety of locally-grown spring flowering perennial plants and shrubs.
The Acorn, which offers a range of sugar-free sweets, and new potter Marion Husband will also be there.
Many regular stallholders are also making a welcome return to the monthly market, including CC Plants, Deli Jax, local butcher Ann Davidson, A J Cupcakes with a range of gluten free cakes, the award-winning Allan’s Chilli Products, Arbroath Quality Fish, Mysterious Worlds with a collection of jewellery, the Soap Farm, and the Association of Blairgowrie Craftworkers.
And members of the public who would like to find out more or have their say on proposals for the new recreation centre in Blairgowrie will be able to speak to Penny Lochhead at the market. Penny is the director of PMR Leisure, the consultants charged with finding out what the community wants from the new facility.
Representatives from Blairgowrie and Rattray Community Council will be at the information point to chat to people about issues in the town that affect them.
Nick and Sue from NSC Outdoor Adventures and Blairgowrie and District Next Steps will also be available to discuss the popular Wednesday health walks, the Blairgowrie Walking Festival and the health and social care integrated joint board.
Volunteers from Blairgowrie and District Next Steps help put up the market stalls along with helpers from the community council and the SCYD Events team.
The community market is organised by Strathmore and the Glens Rural Partnership and aims to provide a source of healthy, affordable and tasty food for people in the east Perthshire and Strathmore areas, contribute to the economic regeneration of the area and provide an outlet for small local producers and those starting out, and create a friendly and accessible space that promotes links between all members of the community.
Visitors to the market are also encouraged to spend time browsing the wide range of independent retailers situated in Blairgowrie and enjoy lunch at one of the restaurants and coffee shops that use local produce.
Organisers said research shows that markets help bring life into towns, aiding regeneration, and encourage social interactions, particularly between rural and urban communities.
Stall hire costs £35. For more info contact Sue at Strathmore and the Glens on 01828 640763 or email email@example.com. Blairgowrie Community Market also has a Facebook page. Blairgowrie and Glens councillor Caroline Shiers has been elected convener of Perth and Kinross Council’s lifelong learning committee.
Councillor Shiers has also been elected as the deputy leader of the council. The new leader is Ian Campbell, a Conservative councillor for Highland Perthshire.
As part of changes to the administration the environment committee has been incorporated into the enterprise and infrastructure committee, comprising 15 councillors.
It will be convened by newly-elected Conservative councillor for the Strathmore ward, Colin Stewart.
The community safety and housing and health committees have been merged to form a single body, to be known as the 13-member housing and communities committee.
The council meeting last week also approved appointments to the community planning groups.
Local councillors Caroline Shiers and Fiona Sarwar, who represents the Strathmore ward, were appointed to the children, young people and families partnership.
Councillor Shiers said: “For the past 10 years I have worked to ensure I know what the local issues are right across the ward and to work with the council and other agencies such as Police Scotland and the NHS to find solutions.
“I have concerns about infrastructure in the ward, health provision, parking, roads, schools and recreational facilities in particular.
“There are a number of major planning proposals which would see hundreds of new homes built in the area and with that there would be opportunities for the town but also challenges which all local members will need to work with the community to solve.”
She went on: “In my position as deputy leader of Perth and Kinross I am already hearing of similar concerns from other towns within the council area.
“They feel that there has been a disproportionate amount of attention on Perth and that the needs of rural communities and towns such as Blairgowrie have not been wholly addressed.
“The new administration of Perth and Kinross Council will be arranging to meet with representatives of community councils and businesses in the very near future and look forward to working with communities to address concerns.
“As convener of the lifelong learning committee I am really looking forward to playing my part in building on the work which is done by excellent staff in our schools.
“In particular I want to work with schools to improve parental involvement in the learning of all our children.
“As a working parent of two children I am more than aware of the concerns parents have about education, an issue raised frequently with me on doorsteps during the recent election.
“We know that we have some excellent schools locally.
“We also know we face an increasing issue in teacher recruitment and that we all want to see every child achieve the very best they can.
“I want the committee to work together to first of all ensure we have a very clear picture of attainment in Perth and Kinross, where Perth and Kinross sits within the national picture and how we can work to improve standards in reading, writing and numeracy.
“Encouraging children to participate in a wide range of activities from art, music, drama, sports and languages and offering as many choices as possible is really important too in developing children who can fulfill their potential.
“I am under no illusion that this is an easy job.
“There is a lot to do but I am looking forward to visiting schools, working with staff and parents and, importantly, the wider community to deliver improvements and build on the good practice already ongoing in our schools.”
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