Action plan for a better life in Rigside and Douglas Water

Members of the Rigside and Douglas Water Steering Group and local councillors: L to R Kirsty Kyle, Billy Hamilton, Ian Mitchell, Councillor Colin McGavigan, Helen Ramage, the CRTs Enid Trevett, Councillor Mark Horsham, Kate Cowan, Councillor George Greenshields, Francis Lawrie, Andy Wallace.
Members of the Rigside and Douglas Water Steering Group and local councillors: L to R Kirsty Kyle, Billy Hamilton, Ian Mitchell, Councillor Colin McGavigan, Helen Ramage, the CRTs Enid Trevett, Councillor Mark Horsham, Kate Cowan, Councillor George Greenshields, Francis Lawrie, Andy Wallace.

Residents of Rigside and Douglas Water turned out in force for a Coalfields Regeneration Trust family fun day, with around 160 adults and kids packing out the community hall last week.

The event was part of the trust’s Coalfields Community Futures programme, and it lived up to its promise of fun with a bouncy castle, face-painter and magic show.

The serious side was that everyone had the chance to vote for priorities emerging from recent surveys on how to make the area a better place to live, work and visit over the next five years.

The trust also put up a £20,000 budget to help get priority projects up and running.

Themes emerging from the survey included strong support for a gym, indoor or outdoor, for all ages, improvements to the path network, more activities for children and young people, more annual activities such as a Christmas party with lights and a tree and a local gala, a safe crossing across the A70, a community bus and a community garden or allotments, and a best garden competition.

One of the organisers, Steering Group member Ian Mitchell said: “We got an amazing turnout.

“The place was really buzzing, and all the adults took full advantage of the chance to register their support for their favourite projects.

Local groups who took advantage of the event to showcase their activities, included Douglas Valley Photography Group, Douglas Valley Church, Douglas Water and Rigside Church Guild, Loudon Pond Association, Rigside Playparks Group, Rigside and Douglas Water Tenants and Residents Association, Rigside and Douglas Water One O’Clock Club.

Rigside Primary School hosted a display of children’s art, with the theme of “A vision for the future of my community”.

Nicky Wilson, Scottish Trustee of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust said: “One of the strengths of our Coalfields Community Futures programme is that we involve people through making events enjoyable occasions for all age groups.

“That was certainly the case at Rigside and Douglas Water and it bodes well for a really dynamic Action Plan for the area.

“I wish them all every success.”