Mail Room: VAT on listed buildings

Among the raft of VAT changes in the Chancellor’s Budget was the withdrawal of VAT relief on approved alterations to listed buildings. A number of constituents have got in touch with me about this, concerned that it will result in some of our most precious structures falling into disrepair as a result of the increased cost of maintaining them. You can see my response to constituents below:

Thank you for your recent letter regarding VAT exemptions on listed buildings.

You express your disappointment that the Chancellor’s actions in this year’s budget will have severe consequences for the heritage sector in Britain. You note from your own experience that the current zero-rate of VAT on work to listed buildings has made the difference between a project being viable or not.

I share your concerns that a consequence of these measures could be the increase in botched renovations which will have a damaging long term effect to some of the country’s finest architectural triumphs. It is also important to note that as well as the damage to heritage and tourism, the environmental effect of allowing these buildings to fall into disrepair could be widely damaging, causing demolitions and re-building projects. This flies in the face of the government’s supposed commitment to a green agenda.

Harriet Harman MP, Labour’s Deputy Leader and Shadow Culture, Media and Sport Secretary, has challenged the Government’s plans. She said:

“Listed buildings are our country’s heritage – our past and our values built into bricks and mortar. The Government’s plan to scrap the zero-rating for approved alterations, alterations which will allow them to continue serving their communities, threaten their future as well as their past.

“In his Easter message, the Prime Minister told the nation that the values of the church make our country what it is. But this year’s Budget threatens churches across the country that serve their congregations and wider communities.

“I urge the Government to reconsider.”

There has recently been a small victory, in large part down to the pressure put on the Government by campaigners such as yourself. The Government has  committed an additional £30 million for the Listed Places of Worship Scheme. My colleague Harriet Harman recently issued Labour’s response to this development:

“This Government’s u-turn is a victory for the campaign by churches and local communities against a wrong-headed proposal in the shambolic Budget.

“But it won’t help the National Trust, all the museums, galleries, theatres, libraries and community centres that are in listed buildings, and which are important for heritage, tourism and local communities. They will still be clobbered by the 20 per cent tax increase, so George Osborne must think again on this.”

I can assure you that Harriet and the rest of Labour’s front bench team will continue to urge the government to change their plans when the opportunity arises.

Of course if you would like to comment further on this issue, you can contact me by email on sheila.gilmore.mp@parliament.uk.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Plan B at last?

The Chancellor went to the Mansion House in the City to announce that the Bank of England would be making up to £140bn available to banks to ‘kick start the stagnant economy’ (words from Daily Telegraph). Up to £80bn could be made available to banks to lend on to business or individuals (e.g. as mortgages), with the rest being a scheme which would offer banks liquidity in tranches of less than £5bn a month.

So finally the Chancellor admits there’s a problem – but is this the right answer?

Since the election we’ve had around £300bn of ‘quantitative easing’ which was meant to assist, but many feel that this has simply disappeared into the banks. While that has hopefully made the banks more stable, it has done little to stimulate the economy and has had some adverse consequences, for example to pension funds.

Then we had Project Merlin which was an agreement between Government and the banks to lend to business – seems this didn’t work either.
And what about ‘credit easing’ which was announced with a fanfare in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement? Surely this was meant to get lending going again? I asked a question about this in PMQs earlier this year and the PM was quick to say it was ‘coming’ and sure enough it was announced as ‘in place’ the day before the March budget. We have heard remarkably little about this in the nearly three months since the Budget. Are we to assume from these ‘emergency’ measures that this scheme hasn’t done much?

So it is perhaps not surprising that there is a lot of scepticism about these latest proposals. Will this extra money mean that banks will stop asking quite such high levels of deposit to would be home owners? Most people report the biggest problem being the deposit rather than being able to repay a mortgage. Will people have the confidence to consider buying when jobs are at risk? A report last week told us that it isn’t just first time buyers who are having problems but also those who might in easier times have wanted to ‘trade on’. They too find it difficult to get lending to ‘bridge the gap’ but are also likely to be wary about considering a move when they may not be able to sell.

And even the banks are pointing out that many of those businesses who are desperate for lending may already be in considerable difficulties – and lending to them could be risky. There is in fact considerable evidence that British businesses have capital but are not using it because the demand for their goods and services is simply not there.

Far from being a Plan B this looks like yet more of the same.

What would be better? Just before writing this I was listening to Any Questions on BBC Radio 4. One of the panellists suggested the money would have been better spent given to Housing Associations to build affordable homes. The Tory on the panel rejected this saying that ‘recovery’ would only come from the private sector. Which is odd really because the main beneficiaries from giving the money to housing associations (or councils) would be private building firms! What the Tory Government can’t seem to accept is that public and private sectors are inextricably linked. More people in jobs in turn helps the rest of the local economy as people in work have more disposable income.

Labour has been advocating direct stimulus to sectors like housing – there are many sites in places like Edinburgh which already have planning consent. In addition we have advocated a reduction in VAT and a bank bonus tax.

So panic from the Government yes – but no real sign that things are going to improve!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Press Release: Sheila Gilmore MP supports Guide Dogs’ call to stop attacks on guide dogs

Edinburgh East MP Sheila Gilmore has supported the campaign to stop attacks on guide dogs, and attended a reception at the Houses of Parliament yesterday. The Edinburgh East MP was amongst the 150 members of parliament that backed the charity’s call.

Me at the Guide Dogs reception in the House of Commons on Wednesday 13 June with Dave Kent from Guide Dogs and his guide dog Quince.

New figures that were released on Monday, 11 June, showed attacks on guide dogs are at an all time high and now running at an average of eight a month. Guide Dogs held the reception to highlight the charity’s growing concern about attacks on guide dogs by other dogs and to ask MPs for their support.

The government is currently consulting compulsory microchipping but has said its preferred option is to microchip puppies only. Under this plan, it would take 10 to 15 years before all dogs are microchipped. Guide Dogs believes it would take too long to have an impact and wants to see the compulsory microchipping of all dogs within two years.

Guide Dogs sees the compulsory microchipping of all dogs as a vital first step towards reducing the number of attacks, but believes the Government should go further.

Sheila Gilmore said:

Action needs to be taken to protect guide dogs and their owners from irresponsible dog owners. Microchipping is one step that would make a real difference.

David Cowdrey, Guide Dogs’ Campaigns Manager, said:

An attack on any dog is frightening, but for a guide dog owner it is much worse. With more than eight reported attacks on guide dogs a month, the trauma caused by these unprovoked attacks could leave a blind or partially sighted person a virtual prisoner in their own home.

We welcome Sheila Gilmore’s support for our campaign, and ultimately we want the law changed so an attack on an assistance dog is treated as seriously as an attack on a person.

The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association is a British charitable organisation founded in 1934. Guide Dogs provides independence and freedom to thousands of blind and partially sighted people across the UK through the provision of guide dogs, mobility and other rehabilitation services. It also campaigns passionately for the rights of those with visual impairments. Guide Dogs is working towards a society in which blind and partially sighted people enjoy the same freedom of movement as everyone else.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Press release: Labour MP uncovers Government dithering on injured veterans’ disability benefits

Edinburgh East Labour MP and Work and Pensions Select Committee member Sheila Gilmore today slammed Government dithering on whether injured veterans will have to undergo tests for a new disability benefit. This follows media reports that suggested David Cameron had personally intervened to ensure disabled ex-soldiers would not have to be assessed.

Sheila Gilmore was speaking after receiving an answer to a written parliamentary question asking whether veterans injured on active service will be exempt from assessment for the Personal Independence Payment, the replacement for Disability Living Allowance. In her response the Disability Minister Maria Miller claimed that ‘all applicants would be required to undergo an assessment’ but then said ‘we are working with the Ministry of Defence to consider what arrangements would best take account of the unique situation of severely injured service personnel’.

Sheila Gilmore submitted this question after an article appeared in The Sun newspaper claiming David Cameron had ‘slapped down MoD bureaucrats and ruled that anyone left disabled by military service must be exempt from benefit cuts’. The article went to claim injured veterans will ‘be exempt from a new scheme to re-examine all claimants aged 16 to 64’.

Sheila Gilmore said:

This written answer shows this Tory-led Government are dithering on whether injured veterans should undergo assessments for the new Personal Independence Payment.

It also shows how desperate Downing Street are for good press coverage with spin doctors having told The Sun that veterans would be exempt, only for the Minister responsible to admit the issue was still under review.

The Government should stop dithering and exempt all people with serious injuries and disabilities from face to face assessments. Instead they should refer to evidence from medical professionals with detailed and longstanding knowledge of claimants’ conditions. This would save public money and reduce the stress and anxiety experienced by disabled people, whether they are veterans or not.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

June 2012 enewsletter | edition 21

Sheila Gilmore MP Header

Westminster report
Queens Speech – Mark 2

The ‘Class of 2010’ celebrated our second anniversary on May 6th, but this was only our second Queen’s Speech since the ‘first session’ of this Parliament lasted an unusually long two year period. And what a difference 2 years makes – from the media’s excitement over the Coalition to the verdict this time of the Times Parliamentary sketch writer Ann Treneman:

‘The Queen’s Speech, the actual words, were beyond underwhelming, more of a shopping list, an email, a series of glorified bullet points’.

More importantly the content hasn’t met with much approval either – the CBI said that David Cameron’s plans to help British business are light on detail and may not work. Or the headline in the Daily Telegraph: ‘Why was there no plan for growth?’.

PMQs 23 May

In the days following the Speech there are general debates on variety of themes related to the Government’s legislative programme. In 2010 many of us ‘newbies’ took the opportunity to make our ‘maiden speeches’ which traditionally concentrate on talking about your predecessor and about the constituency. Good for finding your feet but rather bland politics.

An MP’s week at Westminster

The week beginning 21st May was one that I expected to be quietly busy with several more sessions of the committee on the Finance Bill. But it turned out to be much more eventful than expected.

MPs diary revealedMonday morning is ‘travel down’ time and on the train I discovered that I had been drawn for the second ‘topical’ question at Home Office questions starting at 2.30. ‘Topical’ questions are ones where you don’t supply a subject in advance. Usually I check for such events online but the list hadn’t been updated. Thanks to texts and emails on the move I was able to work on a suitable question. Train was 31 minutes late – but in time for Questions.

My Question was on the application of the Government’s target to reduce net migration. If this proves to be more difficult than thought (which it could be for instance because it depends on how many people leave the country) there is a concern that cuts would be made in the number of international students. This could bring loss of both income and talent to universities like Edinburgh. (p11 http://bit.ly/JsnAuB)

Next up in the Chamber was an Urgent Question from Shadow Business Secretary Chukka Umunna asking about the Beecroft Report. Urgent Questions are apparently much more frequently granted by Speaker Bercow than previously, and they add to the topicality of Commons Business. Business Secretary Vince Cable was on a visit out of London so a junior minister answered. After the two principals anyone who wants to put a further question to the Minister stands up – and then stands up and sits down in between each question and answer until called. The Beecroft Report has been kicking around the Government for several months with varied reports of whether they were going to act on it or not. In much of the discussion recently about the budget and the economy generally many Tories have been pushing for reductions in employment regulation as the answer to lack of jobs. Labour’s position is that lack of demand in the economy is a much greater problem. After much ‘bobbing’ I got a question in (p21 http://bit.ly/JsnAuB).

That was it for the Chamber on Monday for me as the main business after 4.30 was the final stages of the Local Government Finance Bill which primarily affects England. So on to a meeting about preparations for Cabinet Office questions which are due to take place after the Whit recess but one of my jobs this week as PPS to the Shadow Minister was to encourage colleagues to put in questions before Thursday’s deadlines. About an hour in my office to catch up with my researcher and emails before the weekly meeting of the Parliamentary Labour Party addressed by Ed Miliband this week. One more meeting after that – a pre meeting for the Labour members of the Finance Bill Committee to prepare for this week’s sessions.

Votes at around 7.45 and 10pm rounded off the day.

Chuka Umunna MP

Tuesday started with going to a Westminster Hall Debate on the impending changes to Child Benefit. Went in to give support but ended up making a short speech (http://bit.ly/JsoaIF). Had to leave before the end to get to Finance Bill Committee on time. The morning session runs from 10.30 to 1pm but I had to leave early to get back to Westminster Hall because I had secured a 30 minute debate on the health impacts of low energy light bulbs. These short debates are something you enter a ‘ballot’ for and get about 5 days notice of having secured a slot. The issue is one I’ve been working on for some time having been approached by a constituent who suffers migraines from exposure to these bulbs. These short debates basically just give time for the MP to set out the case in about 15 minutes, but you get 15 minutes of a Minister responding. What I was looking for is an exemption to the ban on incandescent bulbs for those people who are suffering because of them. I didn’t get a promise of action from the Minister but it was another step in the campaign to keep the pressure up on Ministers. The full debate is here (http://bit.ly/Jso4Rh).

I seemed to be having a bit of a run of success with ‘draws’ this week and was on the list for Questions to the Deputy Prime Minister starting at 2.30 but as I was very far down on the list I thought the chance of actually being called was low. Luckily I still worked out a question in my head (on social mobility) because unusually the Speaker got right down to my number. (p9 http://bit.ly/JsnL94)

Back to Finance Bill Committee at 4.30. The main chamber business was the Report Stage of the Financial Services Bill & having served on that committee a couple of months back I would have liked to be there for the final stages but I haven’t yet found a way of being in two places at once.

Last vote at 8pm – so early home (with laptop).

Wednesday – the highlight of Wednesdays is Prime Minister’s Questions. I’d found out on Monday that I’d been drawn for a question so had been turning around a number of alternatives in my head. I needed to get in early for a good seat but at least when you are on the list you don’t have to keep jumping up and down. My question was about jobs. In an earlier answer the Prime Minister had reiterated an often repeated claim that his Government had created 600,000 new private sector jobs since the election. But in early 2011 he was claiming 500,000 jobs in the first 6 months – so if both numbers are right the rate of growth of new jobs has slowed up. Our argument is that the bulk of these jobs came about as a result of the economic stimulus put in place by the outgoing Labour Government. My question was called right after the uproar caused by Cameron calling Ed Balls a ‘muttering idiot ‘ so getting started was a bit tricky. (p12 http://bit.ly/JsoeIx)

Immediately after PMQs the PM stayed to give a statement on the G8 meeting at Camp David and NATO at Chicago. Normally I’d have stayed for this, but I had two sets of constituents visiting over the next hour. The upside was being able to take them for coffee on the Terrace on what was a sunny warm day – otherwise the whole day would have been spent inside!

Next stop the Parliamentary Committee, an internal Labour Party body where backbenchers meet with the leader to raise issues. (Later in the day I was delighted to hear that I’d been re-elected by fellow backbenchers to serve on this Committee for a further year – a real privilege).

I’d put my name down to speak on the main debate which was the second reading of a new Bill which will introduce ‘Individual voter registration’. I’ve been serving on the Political & Constitutional Reform Select Committee and we’d produced a report on the draft bill. The Government had made some changes in response but there are still worries that the new system will mean even fewer people being able to vote. Managed to get called but only very near the end – so about 4 hours in the Chamber to get to speak for around 9 minutes. See (p6 http://bit.ly/JsoeIx).

Being a Wednesday business finished with votes at 7pm and 7.15pm.

21 May

Thursday - two more sessions of the Finance Bill Committee (9am – 10.25 & 1pm to 4pm) Went into questions to the Business Secretary – who was again not present in person . Managed to get called for the last question although not on the list. See p13 http://bit.ly/M3A5mS.

Short walk to the BBC studio at Millbank to do a short interview on my light bulbs debate for You & Yours. They had also secured a very good interview from one of the people who have been very badly affected, and I was really pleased that by getting the Debate I was able to generate this media interest.

Normally I’d have been heading for the 6pm or 7pm train but this week I’ve been moving flat (the landlord of the previous one having raised rents by 10% two years running) so had to get unpacked before coming north on the sleeper. Emerged on Friday morning into thick damp Edinburgh haar – but the sun did break through later.

So not a ‘typical’ week – although there are few such at Westminster!

Work & Pensions Select Committee

On 18th May the Government published its response to the Report the Select Committee did on the move from DLA to the new ‘Personal Independence Payment’. You can view the full response here (http://bit.ly/Jspknx). The Chair Anne Begg’s response was: ‘Although the Government has provided a response to the recommendations in our report, a number of significant concerns which were raised remain unresolved.’

One of the fundamental problems I find with all of this is that the language used by the DWP in reports like this (and the language used by the Minister at many meetings I’ve been at) is hard to reconcile with the Treasury imperatives of savings. Indeed one of my colleagues in a debate recently referred to the ‘1984-type language’ of the DWP.

Dame Anne Begg MP

Here’s an example:

‘The face-to-face consultation, as part of the Personal Independence Payment assessment, is fully intended to be a two-way conversation between the claimant and the health professional, allowing a detailed exploration of how the claimant’s condition or disabilities affect their day to day lives. The discussion at the consultations should not be mechanistic and should be tailored to individuals. This is being clearly expressed to potential providers as part of the tendering process for PIP assessment contracts and will be set out in detail in the supporting guidance for providers and their staff.

The department is not placing targets on the time required for face-to-face consultations and is making clear to potential providers that consultations will need to be as long as necessary to reach evidence- based conclusions on individual cases.’

This all sounds great but if it is really to happen the ‘through-put’ of assessments is going to be relatively slow. That’s not a bad thing, but will require either the employment of fairly large numbers of ‘health care professionals’ (which has a cost to be set against ‘savings’ ) or will mean that the whole process of moving people off DLA onto the new benefit is going to take longer than originally estimated (which also has implications for government spending). If providers are being required to keep contract prices down then it is hard to see how they are going to manage to do the ‘in depth conversations’ the Government claims it wants.

Youth Contract

The Select Committee has started an investigation into the Government’s ‘Youth Contract’. This brings together a number of existing initiatives with a new plan for wage subsidies to employers who take on young unemployed people.

· 160,000 wage incentives (£2,275) for employers who recruit an 18-24 year old from the Work Programme (these will be people 9 months unemployed or more).

· an extra 250,000 work experience places over 3 years

· 20,000 extra apprenticeship grants

· more flexible support through Jobcentre advisers

· a new payment-by-results initiative focusing on 16-17 year olds with no qualifications .

· There is some scepticism about how effective this will be. For instance will the wage incentives work better than similar schemes have in the past? If young people are taken on in this way does it simply mean another job seeker left jobless i.e. will this generate any extra jobs? Even if no extra jobs are created is there still a strong case for prioritising young people?

I’ll keep you posted as the inquiry progresses.

Parenting vouchers

One-time hoodie hugger, David Cameron, has now launched one of his key policies to tackle ‘problem families’ in England. The Prime Minister has said the Government will start handing out vouchers in Boots stores, which can be exchanged for parenting classes. On the one hand it would seem that the Government is flirting with universalism (remember Child Benefit became means tested in April), and on the other there are real concerns about the private-public firms who will deliver these classes. Read more on my blog: sheilagilmore.co.uk/some-vouchers-with-your-calpol/.

Constituency Report

Southside Association 40th Anniversary

The full size image is available at http://bit.ly/K90AGK

On 1st May I attended an event to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the Southside Association. Sarah Boyack MSP spoke about some of the history of those years. The Association was formed at a time when ‘demolish and build anew’ was the mantra. Now there were some very poor quality (even dangerous) buildings in some parts of the Southside which had to be replaced. But by the 1970s the ‘modernisers’ were starting to cast their plans way beyond the worst of slums. And sad to say the University was one of the worst offenders buying up properties with a view to redevelopment. The Council though was not far behind – I came across the artist’s impression dating from 1952 of the proposed redevelopment of the Dumbiedykes area. There was a serious proposal for five 25 storey blocks here! Luckily common sense prevailed and only two blocks half that height were built, and the ‘low rise’ flats at least created a ‘roofscape’ which fitted better with the history. It wasn’t perfect – a bit too ‘hard and concrete’ for my taste – but when you think what we might have had! The full size image is available at http://bit.ly/K90AGK.

Dumbiedykes redevelopment predated the Association but its hard fight for refurbishment not demolition, for improvement grants and Housing Action Areas to help make that happen, turned the tide. They couldn’t stop everything but the present shape of the area owes a lot to those campaigners. One story Sarah didn’t tell on the night was the one about a young Councillor Bob Cairns (later to become a much respected Chair of Planning) protesting about some demolition in the Council Chamber. He refused to leave when asked and was eventually carried out – chair and all – by the city officers.

Carr Gomm Lochend Secret Garden

Lochend Community Garde ProjectOn Saturday 12th May I was delighted to attend the Open Day at the Lochend ‘secret garden’ with newly elected councillors Joan Griffiths and Alex Lunn. The charity Carr Gomm has been working with the local community to transform a piece of waste ground into a community garden, equipped with raised beds, a magnificent shed and a seating area. After several cold wet days the sun was shining which should be a good omen for the project. Hopefully such an imaginative and practical use of what was a bit of a ‘problem area’ can be copied elsewhere in the constituency. For lots more details see the website at http://lrcommunitygrowing.ning.com/.

Bus Lanes

Since April the City of Edinburgh Council has enforced restrictions on a number of bus lanes, otherwise known as greenways, throughout the city. While I support the enforcement of the greenways to improve bus punctuality, there have been some real problems with the new system. In Edinburgh East we have three cameras – one at Jock’s Lodge and two on Willowbrae Road.

Many readers will already know of the confusion and controversy the new cameras have caused. Many residents have been ‘caught’ using the lanes and issued fines when they have driven in and out of their streets in the Willowbrae area. Before the election all Parties agreed to implement the new cameras, however I am quite sure none of the Councillors had expected such difficulties! I am pleased that the new administration has decided to waive most of the Willowbrae tickets, and is reviewing how future tickets will be issued. Further details on the review can be found here: http://bit.ly/LaougE.

Lottery Awards in Edinburgh East

It has been a good month for organisations based in Edinburgh East, who have been granted funding worth £66,644 from the Big Lottery Fund. I have included a summary of the awards below, but the grants will help finance activities with young people, carers, as well as Edinburgh’s LGBT football team. Congratulations to the organisations which have that received an award!

· Care In Restalrig Craigentinny and Lochend Edinburgh- £6374 to fund a range of activities for adults with learning disabilities who live in the area

· WEA Lothian Local Association, Old Town – £5800 funding for 50+ computing lessons

· Niddrie Community Youth Group, Niddrie – £9,965 funding for musical tutoring, musical instruments, concerts entrance fees, bike tutor, bike equipment and activities.

· Caring In Craigmillar, Craigmillar – £10,000 towards a new minibus

· Hotscots FC, Edinburgh wide – £2550 funding for additional training and playing opportunities thereby increasing skills levels and the fitness of participants.

· Parents Like Us, Leith Links – £7500 to fund a three day play festival which will include a range of activities specifically for local children with additional support needs

· Carr Gomm, Craigmillar - £6985 will support a healthy kitchen scheme for people with mental health issues

· Visualise Scotland, Easter Road - £3870 will help fund the refurbishment of theday service rooms in their centre for multi-disabled visually impaired adults and young people

Insulation for private tenants and home owners

PEDAL have asked me to point out another insulation deal being offered by the City of Edinburgh Council. The Council is offering free cav­ity wall and loft insu­la­tion to house­holds regard­less of their income. This offer is open to all homeown­ers and ten­ants of private land­lords. The only require­ment is that your home can take cav­ity and/or loft insu­la­tion. It will also cover meas­ures to enable the work to hap­pen, such asproviding scaf­fold­ing or enlarge­ment of loft hatches.

To access this offer phone 0800 512 012, or text ‘Warm’ to 81025, or e-mail free­in­su­la­tion@se.energysav­ing­scot­land.org.uk. Measures will be alloc­ated on a first come, first served basis, so you are encour­aged to apply quickly.

I am also looking into insulation for mixed tenure tenements. Many people come to me as they experience difficulties when they apply for these schemes, only to be told that they cannot proceed because there is a mixture of ownership in the stair. I am looking into this with the new Council administration and have asked what coordination can be done to help those in this predicament.

Seafield update

For nearly 10 days last week, summer was certainly upon us – hopefully it is an indicator for things to come over the next few months. For residents in the Seafield, Craigentinny and Restalrig areas, summer always brings the concern that the air quality will be affected by the Seafield Waste Water Treatment Works. Over the past couple of years, Scottish Water and Veolia have invested in the site and have begun testing their ‘Odour Improvement Plan’, however residents will know that the firms were caught out in March when we had a short period of warm weather. The City of Edinburgh Council, which now has the powers to take enforcement action, is increasing monitoring at the site for the summer months, with near 24 hour checks. Officials will also be based in the area to ensure that any complaints can be followed up quickly. Residents will have already received guidance to report any odour incidents. The number for complaints is 0845 601 8855.

Dates for your Diary

Friday 08 June – The Causey – FiveUP: a celebration!– 1730-1900 – Join residents at The Causey (where West Crosscauseway meets Buccleuch Street) to celebrate the 5th anniversary of the creation of the elegant tropical island which inspired our work towards transforming The Causey into a permanent and beautiful place for people.

Thursday 14 June – Olympic Torch due in City Centre – 0708 start from Festival Square – For the route and torchbearers information, see http://l2012.cm/JrJvBY.

Thursday 14 June – Olympic Torch due in Duddingston Village– 0815 start from the end of Old Church Lane. For the route and torchbearers information, see http://l2012.cm/JrJ76y.

Tuesday 19 June – Craigentinny Duddingston Neighbourhood Partnership Older Peoples Day of Action– 1400-1600 – Northfield Willowbrae Community Centre.

To sign up to future enewsletters, complete your details here:

Subscribe to my mailing list

* indicates required

Are you an Edinburgh East resident?

Email Format


facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail