Craigowl Communities Recruiting 16-24 year olds for Hospitality Academy Beginning Monday 20th February

Craigowl Communities Hospitality Academy 1
Craigowl Communities Hospitality Academy 2
Craigowl Communities reports that, "we have already had a great group of learners through our training centre doors this year." 

"They've learned lots of skills from gaining new qualifications to using our Barista machine to make delicious Lattes and Cappuccino's to experiencing what excellent service looks like at a local restaurant."

"Our next Hospitality Academy starts on Monday 20th February and we are welcoming applications for this now.  Please find attached information flyer and application form. The course is open to all 16-24 year olds who have an interest in learning more about what it takes to work in the Hospitality industry."

Any queries please don't hesitate to get in touch with:

Jacqueline Gray, Academy Coach, Craigowl Communities, 
The Learning Place, 235-237 Hilltown, Dundee, DD3 7AN
Tel Office 01382 200744 Mob 07841782421
Email Web


Successful Launch of Broughty Ferry Men's Shed

Launch of Broughty Ferry Men's Shed Saturday 28 January 2017Earlier today, I attended the launch of Broughty Ferry Men's Shed in a building to the rear of the Broughty Ferry YMCA.

Despite the drizzly rain, a good number of men turned up to find out more about what a Men's Shed might be and to take the opportunity to sign up to get involved.

If you are interested in getting in on the ground floor establishing the first Men's Shed in The Ferry, please contact Nick Toner at the YMCA.


Broughty Ferry Post Office Closed Yesterday

Broughty Ferry Post Office closed with effect from Wednesday 25 March 2017 On Wednesday morning I became aware that the Post Office hosted in the NISA Local store at the corner of Queen Street and Gray Street in Broughty Ferry had abruptly closed.

I went round there to discover that the only information about the closure was a printed sign directing folk, 'Your nearest Post Office is Barnhill at Campfield Square'.

Clearly this will be very inconvenient for the many customers that use and rely on this Post Office and turn up to find that inexplicably the doors are shut.

Later, I contacted the Post Office who confirmed the closure but as yet could not confirm the timescale for the advertisement of the franchise. I had hoped that the existing post office staff and counter might be temporarily relocated to another premises in the central Broughty Ferry shopping area to preserve the post office service and the jobs of the staff. 

I will continue to pursue the Post Office management to try to ensure there is a replacement full service post office in central Broughty Ferry and minimise the time for this to be established.


Replacement Street Lights for Home Street

Installation of new street lights in ppHome Street, Broughty Ferry,

This week work began in Home Street to replace the street lights. 

The Tayside Street Lighting Partnership are installing more energy efficient LCD lights which are also predicted to reduce maintenance costs because of the longevity of the 'bulbs'. This is part of a 'spend to save' programme.

If you have any concerns about the adequacy of Street Lighting in your Street please let me know. 

Faults in existing street lights should be reported directly to the Street Lighting Partnership 
Dundee City Council - Street Lighting Partnership


New Sunday Bookbug Session for Broughty Ferry

New weekend Bookbug Session coming soon to Broughty Ferry!

Start date: Sunday January 29th at 4.00pm. Thereafter every last Sunday of the month.

Location: St Mary's Episcopal Church, Queen Street, Broughty Ferry DD5 1AJ (just up the hill from the Post Office Bar).

Bookbug Sessions are free, fun and friendly events for babies, toddlers, pre-schoolers and their families to enjoy together

Each session lasts around 30 minutes and includes songs, stories and rhymes. There's no need to book and they take place in a very relaxed environment.

Going along to a session is a great way to meet other mums, dads, carers and children.  They also have lots of benefits for your child, such as building up their confidence and social skills, and will give their speech and language development a real boost!

Come and join us - you'll be warmly welcomed to the session.


Sign Up Day at Mens Shed at Broughty YMCA

Sign Up Day for Broughty Ferry Men's Shed
On Saturday 28th January, from 11am, YMCA Brougthy Ferry, Broughty Ferry Timebank and Rosendael Veteran's Association will be pleased to welcome the local community into the workshop-in-progress in the grounds of the YMCA.

Those with an interest in making and creating, skilled or unskilled, are all invited to sample and shape the Men's Shed at YMCA Broughty Ferry.
YMCA Broughty Ferry 
151 Brook Street, Broughty Ferry, DD5 1DJ


Commenting on Additional Attainment Challenge Funding for Dundee Schools

The Scottish Attainment Challenge Logo
Earlier this week, I welcomed the news that Dundee Schools will share an additional £5m of government funding for financial Year 2017/18 to help to close the attainment gap. I am advised that every one of our schools will gain some of the funding which will be shared out according to to the number of pupils in each school entitled to free schools meals. This was originally a Scottish Labour proposal in early 2015 which has since gained all party support. But the original proposal was for additional funding rather than funding to partly compensate for cuts to main stream budgets for our schools.

There are however a number of details yet to be announced which I think Head Teachers, Parent Council members and members of the Children and Families' Service Committee will want to know.

For example how long is the funding likely to last? Will the money be distributed direct to schools or via the Council? How will the spending be monitored and will the schools or the Council be held responsible for this investment? What can our Directorate and Children and Families' Service Committee members do to support our schools?

Notifying head teachers with only a matter of weeks before the spending can commence is potentially a recipe for rushed planning and delayed spending. We saw the latter in the City with the delayed appointments to new posts created by the first tranche of Attainment Challenge projects. Although the Council received approval for its scheme in late August 2015 some staff were still to be appointed in April 2016.

Finally, the Convener of the Children and Families' Service Committee should also clarify the scale of the Council cuts to the mainstream schools budget for 2017/18. If I were a Head Teacher, before I celebrated the additional funding coming from one hand, I should want to also know what funding my school might be losing from the other.


Commenting on Weapons Confiscated from Pupils in Dundee Primary and Secondary Schools 2011-16

Knife confiscated at school
The five year figures from Dundee City Council, of school pupils having an offensive weapon in School show a worrying increase in these incidents from none recorded in school year 2011-12. Additionally, Police Scotland have revealed that between 2013 and 2015, there were 11 incidents recorded across nine high schools in the city where Police had been been informed of a dangerous weapon at school.

Children should not be carrying weapons anywhere — let alone into schools. Even one occasion is too many as the the tragic death of the Aberdeen schoolboy Bailey Gwynne has demonstrated.

When the Report of the Independent Inquiry into the Death of Bailey Gwynne was issued in October last year, I wrote to Michael Wood, the Executive Director of Family and Children's Service,  asking when he would be coming forward with a report to Committee mapping out how best we should respond in Dundee to the recommendations in the Inquiry Report in order to try to prevent such a fatality in our schools.  He confirmed that the Directorate were in the process of considering the various recommendations in full discussion with headteachers.  He also committed to bring a report to committee.

I think parents and carers as well as City Councillors need to know more about how our schools are responding to the Independent Inquiry into the Death of Bailey Gwynne and the incidents behind these statistics about pupils, albeit a very small minority, who have been found taking potentially offensive weapons into our schools. We have all been kept waiting long enough for this report to appear. I am calling on the Executive Director and the Convener of the Children and Families' Service Committee to make sure this report appears before the end of this month.

Link to my earlier posting about the Independent Inquiry into the Death of Bailey Gwynne which was issued in October 2016


Maintenance in Play Areas and Open Spaces

Children's Play Area Castle Green Broughty Ferry
At the Neighbourhood Services Committee last night, maintenance work in play areas and open spaces throughout Dundee was agreed. In The Ferry, this includes:

Castle Green Children's Play Area
Replacement of steel framed suspension rope in the children's play area


Claypotts Park
Part replacement of North side existing chain link fence.

I am sure residents who make regular use of these open spaces will appreciate this investment, when work gets underway in the next few weeks.


Community Feedback and Planning Event for Broughty Ferry

Engage Broughty Ferry Event January 2017 The event is to highlight the findings of the recent Engage Broughty Ferry Consultation and to look at how individuals and groups can help deliver solutions to the issues raised.

This is also an opportunity for local organisations and partners to bring information which highlights the range of opportunities already available in the Ferry.

Please confirm with our Communities Officer, Carole Jenkins, whether you or your organisation will be able to attend on Wednesday 25 January and if you are bringing information with you. 

A snack lunch will be available from 1pm.

Carole Jenkins - Communities Officer
telephone 01382 436929


Nominations Open for Young Scot Awards 2017

Young Scot Award 2017
There are many outstanding young people in our area - please nominate one for the Young Scot Awards 2017:

The Young Scot Awards is Scotland’s biggest celebration of young people and shines the spotlight on the outstanding contribution of young people and groups aged 11-26, who have made a difference to the lives of others. 

There are 12 categories including health, community, the arts and diversity. Nominations close on 27th February 2017.


One Month Left to Arrange Places in Primary Schools in Dundee Starting August 2017

P1 Children Start School

Are you a parent or guardian of a child who’s soon to start Primary 1? Applications for places in Primary 1 beginning in August 2017 should be made by Monday 6 February 2017.  

Parents wishing to enrol their child at their catchment school should contact staff at their catchment primary school who will tell you their arrangements for enrolment. School staff will contact you directly to inform you of any induction days.

Although it is usual for children to attend their local catchment area school, parents have the right to request that their child be placed in a school other than their local catchment area school. Parents can do this by completing a placing request form and returning to Main Reception, Ground Floor, Dundee House, 50 North Lindsay Street, Dundee DD1 1NL. 

For more information visit the Dundee City Council website


Congratulations to David Martin MBE

David Martin MBE of RNLI Broughty Ferry
Congratulations to David Martin, Operations Manager of Broughty Ferry and Peterhead Lifeboat Stations for the award of MBE for services to Maritime Safety in the New Year Honours.  

David Martin has been a volunteer with RNLI for nearly 30 years. After serving on the crew, he took on the role of operations manager at Broughty Ferry and Peterhead.

Last year he was also awarded the RNLI gold badge, the RNLI's top award, as a recognition of his valuable support to the lifeboat service.