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My Role on the Community Council - Ailsa McLeod

posted 6 Jan 2016, 02:35 by Communications TEAM   [ updated 6 Jan 2016, 14:15 ]
Community Council Secretary Ailsa McLeod gives a peek into what her role on the Community Council involves.

I became a Community Councillor in September 2014 by co-option. I contacted the then Chair, Gavin Drummond, who explained the process to me as it was out with the normal cycle of elections. I also had a chat with the then Secretary, Jo Green, and went along to a couple of meetings to see how things worked. I knew a little about the Community Council at that time as my husband Neil was a member but unfortunately due to night class teaching commitments on Tuesdays, he was unable to continue to attend meetings.

The next few months were a settling in period, getting to know the other Councillors and what the issues were affecting Bridge of Allan. In 2015 there was a shuffle around of office bearers and I was nominated and appointed as Secretary. Don’t get me wrong, I did have a say in this and I, and the others felt that, with my work experience I would have the necessary organisational and communication skills to take on this role. I manage the large number of emails and other correspondence that the Community Council receives from Stirling Council, other organisations and statutory bodies, residents and other Community Councils. I make sure the other Community Councillors are kept informed and that responses are appropriate and timeous. I also ensure Michael has all the relevant information to post on our website, facebook and twitter pages and we never seem to be short of material! I also liaise with the press to ensure relevant information is available through our local papers as we appreciate not everyone is as keen on social media as we are! 

As well as my Secretary duties I also get involved with local projects. Most recently I was part of the committee that brought the Christmas Lights and Christmas Spectacular to Bridge of Allan. I worked with members of the Visit Bridge of Allan Association, (Visit BofA),, Friends of Bridge of Allan and local resident volunteers and it was a true community effort. The initial discussions took place back in March and it was then 10 months of hard enjoyable work to bring it to fruition. The feedback from the village and beyond has been fantastic and I personally can’t wait to see what we can achieve next year! Perhaps you would like to be involved?

Currently I am working with a group of mums and a local toddler group to improve the provision of play equipment in our BofA parks for our younger residents. We have consulted with other parents in the village through a questionnaire distributed by the toddler group, local nurseries, library and our website and have put these findings to 3 three companies who are busy preparing some options for us. Officers at Stirling Council Land Services are also helping us with the procurement and installation processes and will eventually take on the insurance and maintenance of the new equipment. Another team effort that I have (and still do) find very rewarding.

I joined the Community Council for the same reason as I know many of the current and previous members did – because I love living in Bridge of Allan, it is a fantastic place and I want it to be the best it can be. “Giving something back” may sound clichéd but there is no better way of describing what motivates us to give up our free time to the benefit of our village, to attend meetings and to beaver behind the scenes on different projects and to ensure that Bridge of Allan residents’ views are properly represented.

I for one look forward to hopefully welcoming new members to the Community Council in 2016 and am happy to have a chat over the phone or over coffee with anyone interested in joining and wants to find out a bit more. Contact me at ccsec@ccbridgeofallan.org.uk 

In the meantime, a very Happy New Year to all Bofarians!

Ailsa McLeod
Secretary