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					                                                                     Save Gillies Hill
                                                                         Newsletter
  SGH is a registered charity
         SCO38687

Inside this issue:
The threat grows ................1          Gillies Hill : The threat grows ....
‘The Mighty Blast’..............2           All may seem quiet on
Descent of the Gillies                      the Gillies Hill front. But
2010 ...................................2   it’s probably the quiet
Big Widstok 2010 ..............3            before the storm, for the
Gillies Hill:                               threat to the Hill grows.
Past Present and Future ......3
                                             Firstly, the danger from
CleanUp 2010 ....................3           quarrying remains. Yes,
Cambusbarron                                 three years of our cam-
Development Trust.............4.             paign have been very
                                             successful: scarcely had
   Campaign Diary                            Hanson Aggregates an- with, in the next few But, as usual with the
                                             nounced its intention to weeks, Drygrange Es- law, things aren’t so sim-
  Save Gillies Hill
                                             extend quarrying in No- tates, owners of the Hill; ple: ultimately, it may
  AGM:
                                             vember, 2006 than Save and, most important of require someone to chal-
  Thursday 20 May:
                                             Gillies Hill was born – all, with our own legal lenge that perceived
  7.30pm
                                             and Hanson then put advisers.                         invalid legal position in
  Launch of                                  those intentions on hold.                             court.
                                                                        To legal lay-people, the
  Cambusbarron                               But our principal aim, to
                                                                        present stand-off may Which is, literally, a
  Development Trust                          persuade the quarriers to
                                                                        seem simple: an error court of last resort.
  Wednesday 26 May                           set aside the 2002 Re-
                                                                        was made in 2002 by The one thing about the
  7.30 pm in the                             view by Stirling Council,
                                                                        Stirling Council, and ad- law that legal laypersons
  Community Centre                           which confirmed permis-
                                                                        mitted by it in 2008. know about it is that it is
  All welcome                                sion to expand quarrying
                                                                        Save Gillies Hill accept- highly complex, indeed,
                                            – now generally recog-
   Descent of the                                                       ed the Council’s then po- often apparently per-
                                             nised as legally flawed -
   Gillies 2010                                                         sition: the legislation verse: legal judgements
                                             and to conduct the EIA
   Sunday 20 June:                                                      that had required an EIA sometimes seem to be at
                                             (Environmental Impact
   2pm at the Public                                                    was, after all, complex, odds with fairness or
                                            Assessment) that should
   Park                                                                 and the Council commit- common sense. It is also,
                                             have been ordered then,
   (same route as last year,                                            ted itself in January of course, very expen-
   but additional loop                       has not yet been realised.
   through the village)                                                 2008 to persuade Han- sive.
                                             Save Gillies Hill has son to thereafter conduct Stirling Council say that,
   Second Gillies Hill                       not been quiet either, one. The fact that Han- as the body which en-
   Litter-Pick                               but has had, and contin- son has not yet done so, dorsed the 2002 Review,
   Saturday 26 June                          ues to have, intensive and that therefore it con- it is legally prevented
   10am                                      discussions channelled tinues to have permis- from seeking it to be
   (meet at Gillies Hill                     through our own Com- sion, albeit, in the overturned.                  However,
   garages)                                  munity Council, which opinion of legal experts, back in 2008 when it
   Big Widstok 2010                          is 100% behind the cam- a flawed permission, recognised its error, it
   Saturday 31 July                          paign, with Stirling should, surely, make fu- did indicate that a third
   Public Park:                              Council, over the impli- ture quarrying impossi- party could seek that re-
                                             cations of the error that ble – at least until an EIA versal, and implied that..
                                             occurred in 2002;                                     (continued on back page)
                                                                        is carried out.
                                                                        The Descent of the

                                                                               Gillies 2010

                                                                   This re-enactment of the descent of the ghillies of
                                                                   1314 to the Field of Bannockburn at the Borestone,
                                                                   is, of course, at the centre of the campaign for the
                                  There’s ancient voices calling   year, Bluntly, the more people who walk, the greater
                                     From far into our past,       publicity for the cause: in previous years, both BBC
                                    To stop this devastation,      and STV news have carried film of the event in that
                                                                   evening’s bulletins, we’ve had coverage in the na-
                                    To stop the mighty blast.
                                                                   tional press, and local broadcast media. The Stirling
                                   Our past is our children’s      Observer has, as always, given us first-class cover-
The yellow broom is growing,
                                              future,              age.
The proud pines standing tall,
                                    And their children’s too,
   Blue sky high above me
                                   So, let us stand together:      This year’s event is on Sunday 20 June, and walkers
As song-birds sing their call;                                     should assemble at the Public Park for a 2pm depar-
                                  This land belongs to me and
    But there’s a sadness                                          ture. As usual, Stewart Marshall and his pipers will
                                               you.
        on the hillside,                                           lead the way, this time, a circuit around the bottom
                                  The quarry men are coming
  That day is dawning fast                                         half of the village before, as usual, ascending the
                                    To take away our land;
When all of our land’s beauty                                      Gillies Hill itself, through the woods via Linda’s
                                      We are only sma folk         Path, and out onto the Polmaise Road at Bearside,
 Will be blown into our past.
                                    But we will make a stand,      Then, as last year, we’ll make our way to the
 The quarry men are coming           Fighting for our future       Borestone via Torbrex, the Weaver Row and Cox-
   To take away our land;          And honouring our past:         ithill. At the Borestone we’ll hear from local MP
    We are only sma’ folk          If we don’t stand together      Ann McGuire, MSP Bruce Crawford, and, our main
  But we will make a stand,        Listen for the mighty blast     speaker this year, Dennis Canavan, former MP,
   Fighting for our future                                         MSP and Chair of the Scottish Ramblers’ Associa-
                                     One day the sound of          tion.
  And honouring our past:
                                        children’s laughter
  If we can’t stand together                                       So, to maximise the publicity, let’s maximise the
                                    Will be heard high in the
 Listen for the mighty blast.                                      turn-out: get as many of your friends and family out
                                               woods,              as possible.
                                   The sound of diesel engines
The songbirds will be leaving,
                                    Will be silenced for good:
  The trees will be cut down,
                                   No more the foreign invader –
 Taste of broomfires burning,
                                   From our land he’s been cast,
   Dust clouds all around.
                                  Because we all stood together
They’ll quarry all our hillside
                                  And stopped the mighty blast.
   And leave a mighty scar,
   All to make a new road          The quarry men are coming
          somewhere,                 To take away our land;
    For people in their car.          We are only sma folk
                                    But we will make a stand,
                                     Fighting for our future
  Save Gillies Hill                 And honouring our past:
   For more information             If we don’t stand together
          visit                    Listen for the mighty blast
www.savegillieshill.org.uk                                         Descent of the Gillies 2009
                                          Ian Dowell
  Our annual free (though feel really free to donate generously to the cause!) music festival kicks off again in
  the Public Park, Cambusbarron, at 1.30 on Saturday 31 July. The line-up this year includes New Life,
  Konrad, Double Trouble, Tony Connors, Buick 55, as well as the winners of this year’s Gala Cambusbarron’s
  Got Talent competition. And, of course, the one permanent fixture in a changing band-list has to be our own
  Gillies Hill Billies.   However, another Cambusbarron attraction is the well-known Shaky, a.k.a Steven
  Mitchell, who sings with Buick 55. This fine outfit recently signed a record deal, after a tour supporting the
  late Johnnie Cash’s group, The Tennessee Three, so Cambusbarron is fortunate indeed, to lure them here
  for Big Widstok. As always there will be perfect weather, first-rate music, and good spirits, some of which
  liquid variety can be obtained, with beer, etc., at our own SGH bar. (Supporters should note the customary
  legal requirements: it is against the law to bring alcohol in to the Park, or to consume that bought at the
  SGH bar outwith the roped-off area.)
  The Big Widstok has already established itself as a great Family-Day-Out fixture for the Stirling area.
  Let’s get as many along as possible to have a really good day – and to help save Gillies Hill.

    Gillies Hill : Past, Present                                                 Clean Up 2010
            And Future
(Please note: this group is       especially in lime mining,
not part of Save Gillies         as well known as they
Hill, but is an initiative of    might be.
Cambusbarron Communi-            Then there is its recreation-
ty Council. Because SGH          al dimensions: walkers,
approves of GH: PP&F’s           runners, climbers, bird-
plans, we’re happy to give       watchers, orienteers and
it space here.)                  cyclists – Gilles Hill has
                                 now a national reputation
Gillies Hill: Past, Present      for bikers - are only a few
and Future was set up by         of those who exercise and               Clean Up Campaign
the Community Council            train there. And its unique      Tackling The Gillies Hill Black-spot
last year with the broad         balance of flora and fauna
aim of enhancing public         – red squirrels, peregrines,     20+ volunteers put in over two hours of sweat and effort
appreciation of what this        deer, badgers, orchids,         one March Saturday morning in the on-going campaign
wonderful landscape has          ancient woodland contain-       not just to save Gillies Hill, but to save it from those who
to offer – for the surpris-      ing some of the most im-        use it as a dump, by trying to restore some of its most
ing truth is that, to many       pressive trees in Britain       popular areas to their former beauty
people, in and outwith           including Californian se-       This year’s starting point was the entrance just off Gillies
Cambusbarron, the                quoia and Scots Pine, - is      Hill street itself. “An embarrassment, every year on the
breadth of the Hill’s            only now gaining recogni-       Descent of the Gillies Walk”, said one volunteer, “People
unique qualities is not al-      tion, thanks to pioneering      travel from all over Scotland to join us that day, and the
ways appreciated.                work led by our American        first bit of the actual historic woods they see is this – a
                                 friends, Peggy Edwards          natural landscape spoiled by human thoughtlessness.”
Thus, though many know           and Dale Kruse.
of its historic associations                                     That thoughtlessness was glaringly obvious to the workers,
with the gillies in 1314,                                        as they cleared the site of plastic bags, bits of car engines,
                                To enhance this public ap-
many are unaware of the                                          toilet seats, paint tins, bottles, cans, building materials, car
                                preciation, GH: PP&F has
Bruce’s visit to Cam-                                            batteries and even a sack whose contents - let’s call them
                                designed, with the finan-
busbarron Chapel, on the                                         items of personal hygiene – are literally unmentionable in
                                cial support of, amongst
hill’s lower slopes, the                                         any more detail.
                                others, Stirling Council, a
day before the battle –         series of leaflets, which   “What makes people soil their own environment?” A
hence the name of our           will be launched over the    rhetorical question, but really, it deserves an answer. And
church: the Bruce Memori-       next few months. The first, an appeal: let’s keep the Gillies Hill entrance to the
al, which is officially 100     on the animal and plant      Woods free from rubbish: it is not a dump..
years old this year, but its    life of the Hill, will be    Come and join us for the next Clean-up, on Saturday 26
roots go back to 1314.          available soon: watch lo-    June, at 10pm
Nor are the Hill’s prehis-      cal press for details
toric remains, nor its in-                                   Save Gillies Hill would like to thank Jim Fisher and his
dustrial heritage,                                           team from Stirling Council’s Streetscape for their custom-
                                                             ary help in the Clean-Up.
 CAMBUSBARRON                      entrepreneurial bene-                                Drove Road) once again
                                   fits and potential of
                                                            The threat grows ..
  DEVELOPMENT                                                (cont from page 1)         come under threat, as
                                   such a magnificent
     TRUST                         landscape                   ..the Council might be they were back in 1996
This proposal to set up a And calling it Cambusbar- able to offer that party            when development was
Cambusbarron Develop- ron DT, and not Gillies                support.                   successfully repulsed,
ment Trust (CDT) arose        Hill DT, will allow the        Hence present discus- largely through the ef-
from a series of meetings
throughout the winter of
                              Trust to literally widen its   sions between Cam- forts of the Community
                              scope and be a vehicle
those examining the pos- for developing other good           busbarron Community Council, but a third area,
sibilities of a community                                    Council and Stirling in the immediate vicini-
                              community projects in                                     ty of Polmaise Castle
buy-out of some/all of Gil- Cambusbarron. (Besides           Council.
lies Hill. This, though de- which, it has always been                                   itself, represents new
sirable in theory, was        SGH’s contention that the
                                                             Of course, this legal im- ‘thinking’ by developers.
found to be very complex      Hill is not simply the         passe could be resolved
in reality. (One brain-cur- wooded bit, vital though         by Hanson’s agreement      All the arguments about
dling obstacle: because       that is, but all the slopes    to conduct an EIA. Al-     the impact of quarrying
the Cambusbarron area         that roll down on almost       ternatively, it may bra-   on wild life, recreation,
is officially an urban area   all sides, to fields, farms, zen things out – in
(!) no-one from that locale                                                             history and amenity, are
                              rights-of-way, etc. Indeed, theory, it can, unless        as valid in the light of
could become members          Cambusbarron has for
of a potential buy-out        centuries         developed
                                                             legally challenged, acti-  these new threats. And
team: that would have to      largely on the Hill’s north-   vate its permission any    when you consider that
come from people who          ern slopes.                    time up to 2042. And,      the Local Plan also indi-
live in the rural areas –                                                               cates expressions of in-
beyond Gillies Hill.)         None of this will be easy. even if, in the fullness
                              But what it requires first of  of time, another compa-    terest in housing
SGH thinks the proposed       all is public support. And     ny replaces Hanson, that development on the un-
CDT is a very good com- that has to be more than             new quarrier could sim-    wooded areas of Gillies
promise. In short, it         merely wishing it well:
should create an official- CDT needs individuals –
                                                             ply inherit that permis-   Hill – in the Seven Sis-
ly-approved organization, first to form a team, then         sion.                      ters’ Field itself, in al-
a limited company with                                                                  most all the fields to the
                              to help realize the ambi- And ominously, the
charitable status, which      tion we all share: to Save                                east of Polmaise Road
will then be permitted to                                    owners of the land, Dry- beyond Bearside, even
                              Gillies Hill in the long term.
act for the Gillies Hill in a                                grange Estates, have       in the field next to the
variety of positive ways:     Please: if you can help, recently emphasised
                              support this initiative ac- that, for them, mineral       Football Park and to the
space demands that the
following are merely the      tively. Already, some indi-                               west of Hayford Mill,
                              viduals       have      been   extraction on the Gillies  you might want to raise
most obvious of the bene-
                              approached – to at least       Hill remains a priority.   your hands in surrender.
fits:
                                attend the first meeting;
o Entering into land man-       but volunteers are even     But not the only one. A
  agement partnerships                                      second threat to the Gil-   But don’t. We’ve resist-
                                more welcome. The pro-
  with willing landowners       posed timetable is out-     lies Hill has emerged       ed the quarry for over
o Raising funds for wood-       lined below.                recently with               three years. Keep resist-
  land and environmen-                                      Drygrange’s declared        ing, keep fighting.
                                A meeting of interested
  tal improvements;             parties to discuss the      interest, as revealed in    Write to your MP, your
o Preservation of its di-       setting up of the Cam-      Stirling Council’s con-     MSPs, your Councillors.
  mensions as they are          busbarron       Develop-    sultations on its Local     And continue the fight
  as present;                   ment Trust is to be held    Plan, in house building     to save Gillies Hill by
o Helping to develop pub-       in the Community Cen-                                   supporting SGH events
                                tre on Wednesday 26
                                                            on three separate areas
  lic access for recre-                                     of the Hill. (An inevita-   and initiatives (these,
  ation and maintain            May at 7.30pm
                                                            ble thought: for how        more than merely legal,
  paths;                        After that, if there is                                 are outlined elsewhere
                                enough interest, we can     long after initial devel-
o Restoration,   where                                      opment might these are-     in this Newsletter) this
  possible, of damaged          move forward to register
                                                            as remain separate?)        year.
  areas;                        the Trust as both charity
                                and company. For further    Not only would Pol-
o Increased public edu-         information      contact    maise Gardens, above        The alternative doesn’t
  cation / appreciation of      Lesley    Campbell     at                               bear thinking about.
  the social, recreational,                                 Seven Sisters’ Field,
                                lesley@lesleycampbell.
  historical, health, cultur-   wanadoo.co.uk or phone
                                                            and the Fairy Hill on the
  al, scientific and            07709959760                 Commondry (or Old

				
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