Claims that Milngavie is the ‘poor relation’

Milngavie Precinct.
Milngavie Precinct.

Concerned residents have claimed that Milngavie is the ‘poor relative of East Dunbartonshire’ - with the council’s money being spent in other parts of the district.

The chairperson of Milngavie Community Council, Iain McAllister, says they are losing credibility with the public because their attempts to influence council decisions are being ignored.

He said: “We are losing frustrated members and there’s a definite perception that Milngavie is considered to be the poor relative of East Dunbartonshire with Kirkintilloch and Bishopbriggs receiving preferential treatment.”

People are angry about the loss of public toilets in Milngavie precinct at the start of the West Highland Way, which attracts thousands of visitors each year. Many have also criticised the ‘Bears Way’ project along the A81, which MCC says is ‘shambolic’ and ‘potentially dangerous’.

They also don’t think East Dunbartonshire’s sports pitch strategy goes far enough and argue that all the currently unusable red blaes pitches throughout Milngavie and Bearsden should be replaced with all weather pitches.

MCC also says their concerns about a planning application for an extension at Kilmardinny House/Arts Centre in Bearsden, which is a grade B listed building, have been ignored, nursery and primary schools such as St Joseph’s in Milngavie are being closed and the Allander Leisure Centre will not be available now until 2021 at the earliest.

Mr McAllister added: “This is compared to an overspend on the new Huntershill Sports Centre in Bishopbriggs being approved and millions of pounds being spent on Southbank Marina in Kirkintilloch where the council has its new HQ.”

Deputy council leader, Councillor Billy Hendry, said: “The council has an agreed 10-year capital programme which includes a wide range of projects in Milngavie, Bearsden, Bishopbriggs, Kirkintilloch and surrounding villages. The plan aims to ensure balanced investment across all of the communities in East Dunbartonshire, including the Primary School Improvement Programme.”