Cy­cle group is spared

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Dou­glas Dickie

A bid to scrap a coun­cil group which sup­ports cy­cling in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang has been stopped.

The de­ci­sion was made at the first meet­ing of the new coun­cil on Thurs­day.

A bid to scrap a coun­cil group which sup­ports cy­cling in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang has been stopped.

Of­fi­cers sug­gested to new elected mem­bers the South La­nark­shire Cy­cling Part­ner­ship be dis­con­tin­ued and ab­sorbed into Sus­tain­abil­ity Part­ner­ship.

But the move was re­jected at the first meet­ing of the full coun­cil last week.

The part­ner­ship in­cludes mem­bers for Cam­glen Bike Town as well as Sus­trans, SPT and Cy­cling Scot­land. It is be­lieved a num­ber of groups and in­di­vid­u­als lob­bied elected mem­bers to vote the pro­posal down. Con­ser­va­tive group leader Alex Al­li­son moved an amend­ment to keep the part­ner­ship and this was agreed by new coun­cil leader, SNP’s John Ross.

Cam­bus­lang Com­mu­nity Coun­cil were among the groups who wanted the part­ner­ship main­tained.

They set up the Cam­bus­lang Cy­cling Project to take for­ward ini­tia­tives in­clud­ing de­vel­op­ing a new wood­land cy­cle path and walk­way from Cam­bus­lang Bridge to Dal­marnock Bridge and the Clyde Cy­cle Park Cam­bus­lang, to cre­ate a road­race cy­cling track on a site off Bogles­hole Road.

Trea­surer John Bachtler said: “The part­ner­ship has done re­ally valu­able work in a short space of time in de­vel­op­ing a strat­egy for cy­cling in South La­nark­shire, in help­ing many lo­cal cy­cling ini­tia­tives to get off the ground and flour­ish, and to en­sure co-or­di­na­tion be­tween the dif­fer­ent de­part­ments in South La­nark­shire Coun­cil, na­tional cy­cling or­gan­i­sa­tions like Cy­cling Scot­land and SUS­TRANS, and lo­cal projects.

“Abol­ish­ing the South La­nark­shire Cy­cling Part­ner­ship would have been a ret­ro­grade step, and we are very grate­ful to the new Cam­bus­lang West coun­cil­lors, John Bradley, Ann Le Blond and Mar­garet Walker, and oth­ers for en­sur­ing the cy­cling part­ner­ship con­tin­ues.”

A spokesman for Healthy n Happy, who op­er­ate the pop­u­lar Cam­glen Bike Town, said: “We have a very good re­la­tion­ship with South La­nark­shire Coun­cil and our other part­ners. We look for­ward to con­tin­u­ing work­ing with our part­ners to con­tinue bring­ing the so­cial, health and en­vi­ron­men­tal ben­e­fits of cy­cling to the res­i­dents and com­mu­ni­ties of Cam­bus­lang and Ruther­glen.”

Geral­dine McCann, the coun­cil’s head of ad­min­is­tra­tion and le­gal ser­vices, said of­fi­cers re­view de­ci­sion-mak­ing ar­range­ments at the end of a coun­cil term. She claimed scrap­ping the part­ner­ship would only be sug­gested “with strong jus­ti­fi­ca­tion” and added: “In this case, ini­tial feed­back was re­ceived from com­mu­nity and en­ter­prise re­sources propos­ing the cy­cling part­ner­ship be dis­con­tin­ued as they con­sid­ered es­sen­tial cy­cling mat­ters could as ef­fec­tively be re­ferred to ei­ther the re­source com­mit­tee or the sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment mem­ber/of­fi­cer work­ing group.

“Hav­ing fur­ther con­sid­ered this feed­back and dis­cussed it, of­fi­cers con­sid­ered that the Sus­tain­abil­ity Part­ner­ship would be a bet­ter fit for the re­mit and part­ner­ship ar­range­ments of such mat­ters, as there were sim­i­lar ob­jec­tives.

“It was con­sid­ered the work of the Cy­cling Part­ner­ship could con­tinue through a widen­ing of the mem­ber­ship and re­mit of the Sus­tain­abil­ity Part­ner­ship, lead­ing to the rec­om­men­da­tion dis­cussed.”

Pedal power An at­tempt to scrap the South La­nark­shire Cy­cling Part­ner­ship has been thwarted by coun­cil­lors

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