SUNDAY 14 April 2013
Two Southside schools were recently awarded funds from the ‘Awards for All’ Lottery small grants scheme.
St Constantine’s Primary School and Nursery Class on Drumoyne Road received £9,974 and Penilee Nursery School on Inkerman Road received £10,000.
St Constantine’s plans to make people and communities healthier by installing ‘Trim Trail’ adventure playground equipment and generally improving the school grounds.
Penilee Nursery will create an outdoor learning and play space for all pupils by installing planters, benches, an outdoor hexagonal shelter and active play equipment such as a ‘tunnel challenge’, a log wall, a sloping balance beam and new artificial grass. This plan meets the Awards for All criteria of ‘making people and communities healthier and providing better and more sustainable services and environments.’
Local MP Ian Davidson congratulated the schools and said: ‘Awards for All measures these grants on public benefit criteria. I congratulate the Depute Head Teacher of St Constantine’s, Miss Deirdre Connolly and Team Leader at Penilee Nursery, Mrs Carol-Anne McKay, as well as all staff from both schools, for their outstanding work in preparing a successful case for these grants.’
Awards for All is the National Lottery’s small grants scheme. It awarded grants totalling £368,594 to 57 groups across Scotland in April.
An Awards for All spokesperson, said: ‘Awards for All proves that the smallest amounts of funding can often make the biggest difference to people’s lives. Whether the money is spent to help bring back life to a high street or to be used to re-open a much needed community service; it’s great to see so many small groups coming forward with the aim of making a difference to their local community.’
Well it’s happened! The date for the Referendum is set – Thursday 18 September 2014. Glasgow City Council has entered a Social Partnership with Enable to chart the future of day centres now that it has been decided three of the seven will be closed. And spring is on its way with hosts of groups and organisations launching new programmes and events.
So everything is ok? OK?
No. Not really. With a date set, can we get on with proper DISCUSSION and considered arguments about the details instead of the shouting matches we’re witnessing. What is best for the people of Scotland is what is at stake – not the public persona of any one politician or political party.
With the die cast for closure of the day centres which are currently used by more than 500 people with complex learning disabilities – Glasgow as a city needs to decide what it is doing. Are our elected representatives really working for the benefit for all their constituents and the well being of the entire community? Or maybe they are blindly following party policy and stoking up the vested interests of organisations.
Those volunteer groups and organisations which are addressing the needs and the interests of real people and fostering a spirit of true community are still alive, thankfully!
When groups such as the South Glasgow Heritage and Environmental Trust (SGHET) can run an all -day conference on Saturday 23 March in Gorbals on the Music, mirth and magic of the Southside; when the campaigners of the Kelvin Meadow can organise an Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday 24 March with Anna Lehr reading Peter Rabbit stories too. Then something is working the way it should.
Musician Declan Sinnott was in town as a highlight of the St Patrick’s Festival on the Southside. But the Wexford man should return for the Comedy Festival as his banter at Glad Cafe delighted the capacity audience.
However, it was his music they’d come to hear and after more than two hours of continuous song with Vickie Keating’s voice being a natural complement, the audience was reluctant to let him go. Only the strict closing hours of the Glad Cafe brought a fine night to an end.
Known for his work as producer, guitarist and musical director for Ireland’s world-renowned Mary Black,Declan has recently gone solo.
As he explained it, he was so nervous singing solo, he decided he needed someone else with him. Which is where Vickie came in.
The emotions covered by the songs cover most human conditions. He modestly suggested that since he’s 62 and can sing ‘Blood is Rushing Through These Veins,’ there is hope for any men of his vintage to experience the same joy. It isn’t only that he sings it, he wrote it with Owen O’Brien and one can only imagine, he’s experienced the feelings it reveals.
Most of the songs on his first album were written with Owen. Declan makes it a point of honour to talk about the songwriters. He also tells the stories of how the songs came to be made and relates the history of the surrounding events to the extent that at least one parent in the audience uses Declan to educate his children.
Declan’s first solo album is titled: I love the noise it makes. Everyone at Glad Cafe last night would rephrase that to read: I love the noise Declan makes. Singing or playing, this man is in a class of his own. Sign up for his next album now.
Saturday 2 March 2013
Two McColl’s newsagent shops on Glasgow’s Southsider were robbed within hours of each other this weekend. And a similar incident occured in Symington, Ayrshire, too.
The first robbery was at 29 Eaglesham Road, Clarkston on Friday 1 March around 9.30 pm when two men entered the store. One carried a firearm and demanded money from the 18-year-old male shop assistant. They got away with a small sum of money and a quantity of cigarettes. The firearm was not discharged but the shop worker suffered a minor injury to his head and was treated at the Victoria Infirmary. The robber with the firearm is white, late 20s, wearing a dark ‘Fred Perry’ waterproof jacket with a logo on the left breast area, a white hoody underneath, a balaclava and blue jeans. The second robber is white, late 20s, wearing a dark hoody, jeans and white ‘Nike Air Max’ trainers.
Detectives from Pollok CID are checking all available CCTV from the area and appeal for more information. Said Detective Sergeant Mark McLennan: ‘This was undoubtedly a terrifying experience for the young man who was working in the newsagents. Thankfully, he was not seriously injured but he has been left very shaken as a result. The newsagents is situated on a very busy road, and there are several takeaways and off-licences nearby. On a Friday night, this would have been more busy than usual so I appeal to anyone who was in the vicinity of this part of Eaglesham Road to get in touch with police. We need people to come forward with any information they may have.’
Anyone who saw men fitting the descriptions or acting suspiciously in the area, is asked to contact Pollok CID on 0141 532 5600. Said DS McLennan: ‘We know they left on foot. However it is possible they had a vehicle, so I’d ask anyone who may have seen a vehicle parked nearby that may have been driven erratically or at speed, to get in touch.’
Alternatively contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 where information can be passed in confidence.
The second incident happened at RS McColl’s newsagent on Carmunnock Road, Cathcart around 7am on Saturday 2 March. Two women aged 50 and 52 had just opened up the store when a man entered and threatened them with violence and a weapon. He demanded money and keys to the safe. He stole a four figure sum and keys to a white Volkswagen Polo which was parked outside. He then stole the car which was later found burnt out nearby in Linn Park. The women were uninjured but very shaken.
The man is described as around 5ft 10 inches, slim build, with a thin/gaunt unkempt appearance and ‘yellowing’ teeth. He was wearing a black jacket, with a blue hoody underneath and dirty blue jeans with dark shoes.
Detective Constable Stephen McGrath of Aikenhead Road CID said: ‘This was a brazen act by this man who went into the shop, literally, as it opened for the day. I’d like to reassure the public that we’re making extensive enquiries into the incident. A man apparently entered the shop just prior to the suspect entering but left as the incident occurred. We would urge this man to contact us as he may have information that could help.
‘We’re carrying out door to door enquiries and speaking to shop owners nearby. I’d like to speak to anyone who may have seen a white Volkswagen Polo being driven at speed just after the incident taking place, and anyone who saw it around Linn Park, which is a short drive away, before being set alight. I know the area is busy with dog walkers and on a Saturday morning this would have been no different with people coming and going to buy their morning papers.’
Anyone with information is asked to contact Aikenhead Road CID on 0141 532 4900 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 where information can be passed confidentially.
Earlier on Saturday morning – around 6.20am – an attempted robbery took place at a newsagents in Symington, Ayrshire. A 77 year old man was working on his own within TD Kirkland newsagents when a man with a bladed weapon entered the store and demanded money. This was refused by the shop owner and the man left, empty-handed.
The suspect is described as around 5ft 10 inches in height, of slim build wearing black clothes, a black balaclava and black gloves. Detective Inspector Stevie Wallace said: ‘The shop owner had just opened up his shop when the suspect entered, demanding money. Although the suspect had a weapon, the shop owner was uninjured.
‘Symington is a quiet village, and the area in which the attempted robbery took place is quite remote. We will be carrying out door to door enquiries. But I’d like to speak to anyone who may have been heading to the shop to get their daily paper or their breakfast rolls and ask them to get in touch. They may have information which could assist with our enquiries.’
The number to call is Ayr CID on 01292 664000 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 where information can be passed confidentially.
Residents of Lambhill Court Care Home on Glasgow’s Southside, knitted a tidy sum for Erskine, the charity for armed services veterans.
They raised £100 from selling goods they made during activities sessions in the lead up to Remembrance Sunday and handed over the cheque in November.
Manager, Iain Ballantyne said: ‘Erskine is a charity which our residents can relate to. Many of them and their family members went through the Second World War. We are proud of the residents and of Frances -who has a parent living in Lambhill – for taking this on and raising money for such a fantastic charity.”
The knitting, selling and the presentation were organised by Lambhill’s activities co-ordinator, Mary Fox.
Erskine fundraiser Alan Moss said “This is a terrific donation. We, at Erskine, are delighted everyone at Lambhill Court has been thinking of our brave veterans. Donations are vital to continue to provide the high standard of care our veterans deserve so this will make a real difference. Thanks very much and well done to everyone for the successful fundraising.”
Such encouragement of activities and participation in its community is given priority at Lambhill Court, where there are currently a few places for new residents. All five care homes in the Lambhill Court group meet the same standard and staff are expected to treat each resident ‘as if he or she was your own parent.’ For further information please contact Deepak Poddar tel 07786 735 709
Erskine has been looking after veterans for almost 100 years and is the leading care organisation for ex-Service men and women in Scotland.
Follow details for facebook and twitter
Langside College and Sodexo have the recipe for success according to a leading award giving body.
The Southside college with its commercial partner Sodexo, has developed a unique SVQ Food Preparation and Cooking course. Aimed at students from schools offering Additional Support for Learning it provides 20 places and has a long waiting list.
The collaboration involves schoolchildren and adults with special needs working in the College canteen which is run by Sodexo.
This partnership took the College and Sodexo to the London finals of the Premises and Facilities Management Awards on 7 November. There they won the ‘Partners in Service to the Community’ category. This was the first year the category was available.
Hosted by Gabby Logan, the gala evening heard the judges were impresed by the incredibly successful course. ‘It is providing a fantastic springboard to further education and to the world of work,’ said the judges. ‘The partnership demonstrated an outstanding collaboration that is delivering excellent academic outcomes for the College and its students while providing quality services to an excellent learning environment and community facility.”
John Rafferty, director of care, health and wellbeing at Langside College said: “Sodexo has enriched our course delivery in more ways than we could have imagined. This has enabled us to offer genuine vocational opportunities to some of our most vulnerable learners and so help us meet our community remit.”
Graham Box, Sodexo’s managing director for Scotland said: “We are thrilled that our partnership at Langside College has been recognised with this award. As part of our sustainability strategy, known as the Better Tomorrow Plan, we have a commitment to supporting the local communities in which we operate.”
By Alastair Brian
As the holiday started, pupils from the Southside Primary School, St Angela’s, proved they had the X Factor by writing a charity single for Malawi.
All proceeds from their song – ‘Miles Apart’ – will go to the Scottish charity Mary’s Meals to feed 60 Malawian children for a year.
St. Angela’s Head Teacher, Brendan Duff, is very proud of his P6 pupils, who wrote the lyrics and melody with help from their teachers. He said: ‘During Religious Education (RE) the pupils were learning about people we admire and they learned a little bit about a man named Magnus who started Mary’s Meals.
‘It was then decided, in music, to try to write a song that we could sell for the charity. The youngsters learned about writing lyrics through poetry and as a class they made up a melody.
‘As a school we are delighted with the result. It’s been a good experience for everyone to take part in the recording process.
‘Our aim is to see if we can raise as much money as possible for the charity.
‘We feel that this is a very worthwhile cause because Mary’s Meals currently feeds over 600,000 children every day across the world.
‘In Malawi it costs just £7.00 to feed a child for a year and our school wants to do everything we can to contribute.’
Mary’s Meals was created in 2002 by Magnus McFarlane-Burrow, as an extension of his Scottish International Relief (SIR) charity. A chance meeting with a family in Malawi,while he was working on a famine relief project, led to a whole new area of work. A mother was dying of AIDS and lying on the floor of her hut surrounded by her six young children. She said that all that was left for her was to pray that someone might look after her children after she died.
Then Magnus asked her oldest son what he hoped for in life. His reply: ‘To have enough food to eat and to go to school one day,’ was not easily forgotten.
This was the main inspiration for the Mary’s Meals programme, which aims to provide one meal every school day for chronically hungry children. This way the children are encouraged to gain the education they need to lift themselves from a life of poverty.
Today the Mary’s Meals initiative provides meals to impoverished children in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Eastern Europe and South America.
The charity’s Education co-ordinator said: ‘I visited St Angela’s school recently and I was very impressed by their whole approach – from working out how much it costs to feed a child in maths; to writing the lyrics for the song in music. This has been an enriching, learning, experience for every young person involved. It’s also lovely that it’s children here helping less fortunate children in Malawi.
‘Mary’s Meals is delighted that the school chose our charity and we would like to thank everyone for their continued fundraising efforts.’
The song is available on iTunes, Amazon, and CDbaby, and costs 89p.
The story of a forgotten Scottish heroine who was murdered in Auschwitz was told in powerful performances by Tram Direct at Theatre at Queens on Glasgow’s Southside this week.
The harrowing details of Jane Haining’s final days as matron of a Church of Scotland orphanage for Jewish girls in Budapest, were dramatically retold by professional and community actors in ‘To Serve is to Resist.’
Because she refused to leave ‘her girls’ she was arrested and died with them in the gas chambers of the notorious Auschwitz concentration camp.
The performances were even more poignant because Jane had worshipped in the very building where Tram Direct now has its headquarters and theatre space. The congregation of what is now called Queen’s Park Church of Scotland, installed two stained glass windows to remember Jane’s sacrifice and some of the current congregation took part in scenes in the play.
One of the cast was from Budapest and had known of Jane’s bravery. Aniko Szilagyi is currently working for her PhD at the University of Glasgow. She first visited Glasgow in 1999 as a winner of an English speaking competition run in Budapest as a living memorial to Jane Haining. Said Aniko: ‘It is strange taking part in this play. It is part of my history.’
The play was commissioned by Isobel Barret founder of Tram Direct who runs it and Theatre Ecole from their base within Queen’s. ‘When I heard the story of Jane Haining I commissioned Ian Morland to write this play. It was a story that just had to be told and it was right here on our doorstep.’
The first act tells of Jane’s determination to work abroad as a Christian missionary and how she achieves her dream on being appointed matron of the Budapest girls’ home.
The second act illustrates vividly how, despite her suffering throughout interrogations and in the death camp, she never lost her faith in God. Skilful use of original film footage of Hitler speaking, set the context of the time. Nine songs interspersed throughout the play added to the emotional response of the acting.
Those who watched the play were left with a profound sense of awe at Jane’s courage. ‘This deserves to be wider known and seen,’ said one member of the audience.
Southside communities, fearing they’ll be trapped when left without a bus service, turned out in force to a public meeting at Tinto Primary School, Hillpark on Thursday 8 March.
More than 160 people crowded into the school dining hall to hear Glasgow Cathcart MSP James Dornan, who had called the meeting, say he was hugely disappointed in First Bus for withdrawing the 29 bus route from 29 April. ‘My office has been innundated with people made anxious by this decision. I believe First Bus has a social responsibility to provide a service in areas like Hillpark and Mansewood which would be devastated if this goes ahead. I am hugely disappointed in First Bus for withdrawing this service without any consultation with the local community or passengers. Cutting off vital services to some of the most needy communities in Glasgow is not the way to respond to the tough economic background.’
In a civil but unswerving meeting, the two First Bus representatives heard the concerns of local residents.
Said 81-year-old David Boyd who lives in one of the Hillpark tower blocks: ‘I’ve no way of getting up the hill without a bus and there are 500 households in Hillpark to be considered.’
Lynn Campbell who works for Glasgow Old People’s Welfare Association and whose elderly father lives locally, asked: ‘Was a feasibility study done? Has the route made a profit in previous years? What about the families you rely on the bus to get to work?’ She also commented that there was no additional security by way of police presence or CCTV despite the high percentage of elderly people in the area. Addressing the bus company representatives she added: ‘What you are doing is WRONG! There is a bigger social picture than the economic picture you see.’
Glasgow City Councillor Colin Deans said from the floor of the hall: ‘the company should take a holistic approach. They could cut the number 38 bus service which has one bus every six minutes and serves an area with a much higher percentage of car ownership.’ He added that in fairness to First Bus, it wasn’t all their fault. ‘The fuel duty rebate will be going to rural bus companies now.’
One local resident told of an encounter with an elderly neighbour: ‘She can’t walk far and uses a walking stick. She told me she won’t be able to get out if the 29 bus is withdrawn. This is her only means of getting to the supermarket which is also her social outing. But she was prepared to wait an hour in a cold bus shelter to get a bus back as she couldn’t afford anything else.’
Two mothers also explained that the 29 was the only bus they could use to take their children from Shawlands where they lived, to Tinto Primary School which they attended and where the meeting was being held. ‘There is no other bus. So how do we get our children to school?’ said one mum.
Josephine Docherty of the Community Council, said there should have been a consultation meeting and that the Community Council should have been involved.
Emma Gillan, Labour candidate for Glasgow City Council commented that she was disappointed that no ideas were being presented at the meeting. ‘There is no reason why re-routing cannot be done.’
Councillor Stephen Curran who attended the meeting which was on his ‘patch’ urged the communities to ‘stick together’ to win the case: ‘We did this before when the ‘wee happy bus’ was removed. All parties need to work together on this through Glasgow City Council and the Scottish Parliament and we are willing to do that.’ He said that while one in five residents in Glasgow was elderly, there was a much higher proportion in the Hillpark and Mansewood areas. ‘There are also families to be considered. If the 29 bus service is withdrawn there will be an area of five miles left with no bus service.’ He said there had been no ‘joined up’ thinking because bus shelters had been erected only two weeks ago.
MSP James Dornan who chaired the meeting said in summing up: ‘I’ve been extremely encouraged by (SPT) Strathclyde Partnership for Transport’s willingness to recognise the impact of losing the 29 bus service. It may be possible to re-route another service.’ He emphasised that SPT considered it would be illegal for funding to be set aside for specific routes. ‘But we can lobby hard for a re-allocation of funding as SPT is keen to see a solution.’ He added that Glasgow City Council funding might be found to bridge the gap in service. At the end of the meeting he told this website: ‘I’m much more hopeful we will be able to arrange something to keep the 29 running through Hillpark and Mansewood. I’m also hoping to meet with First Glasgow’s managing director to take this forward.’
For First, Chris Carberry the company’s Network Planner said: ‘Never say never! We want to work in partnership and as a commercial company don’t want to be left behind.’ But he explained that there had been major changes in how the Scottish Government’s transport subsidy now had to be allocated and that there was competition from other companies which hadn’t been there before. He also emphasised that ‘for years the 29 route has not made money.’ In the past, revenue generating routes were able to subsidise loss making ones, but competition now made that impossible.
After the meeting he said that under company policy he was not permitted to speak to the press and a statement would be issued by the company. When that statement is received it will be put up on this website.
From 1 April this year the Scottish Government’s grant to bus companies will total £50 million for the year 2012-13 – a reduction of 17% on previous funding. This will be allocated on distance travelled in an attempt to help rural areas and to encourage fuel efficiency. Previously the funding allocation was based on fuel used. Funding for concessionary travel will be capped at £187million from now till 2014/15.
Dance group ‘Fear of the Unknown’ from Glasgow’s Southside is the only group from Scotland to get through to the UK semi-finals of the ‘Got to Dance’ programme on Sky 1 HD. From the initial 30,000 auditioned in Glasgow, London and Dublin, the Gorbals dancers are in the final 30.
From the Sunday 29 January the public can vote, week by week, on the best acts. The two winning groups from each week will then compete in the finals on March 4 when the champion team will walk away with a cool quarter of a million pounds and the crown of Got To Dance 2012.
Lorna Munn who is one of the senior dancers in ‘Fear of the Unknown’ at 24, said: ‘It was the biggest emotion when we were told we’d been selected and were the only ones from Scotland. I was so happy I wanted to cry.’
Based in Gorbals from Robert Hamilton School of Dance, the ‘Fear of the Unknown’ is an invited group of the School’s best dancers. He describes their ‘Got to Dance’ routine as: ‘Theatrical, technical, original.’
Said Mum Kim Carr, whose daughter Jay, aged 10, is one of the team: ‘We are all so very proud. It is really exciting and we’re keeping our fingers crossed ‘Fear of the Unknown’ will win. But everyone in Scotland needs to be voting for them on Sunday 5 February when they dance live on the programme.’
Not only do they rehearsal several nights of the week, they make all their own costumes which are stunning. See their audition performance: http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DurvxAbSB-gQ&h=mAQH5012yAQEmPLHu-v8souU1sx9qLq-0rOkJLwSwgOicgw
And take a look at their Facebook fan page for updates – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fear-of-the-Unknown/269468063113061
In addition the dancers do a lot of charity work and have raised more than £200,000 for a variety of good causes. ‘We give up our school holidays and free time to dance at lots of these events,’ said Jay.
Commented her Mum Kim: ‘We are telling as many people as we can about ‘Fear of the Unknown,’ and hopefully Scotland will support us.’