Celebrating Leith and North Edinburgh January 2012
News elsewhere on
Leith & North
Waterfront Fair 2009
Punjabi Womens' Cafë
Victoria Primary: Thinking Pink
Pride 2011
Cut Trident Not Jobs 2010
Citadel 30: Shaving Dave
Edinburgh Mela 2010
LGBT Lives Exhibition 2011
Leith & North: Please email any news items to: news@leithandnorth.org.uk Malcolm Chisholm sworn in to serve as MSP for Edinburgh Northern & Leith Malcolm Chisholm smiling with a red rose button hole with a view of the Scottish Parliament looking towards Salisbury Crags visible through the window behind him

^^^ Above: Malcolm Chisholm ready to be sworn in for a fourth term as MSP for Edinburgh Northern & Leith

Malcolm Chisholm (Scottish Labour) was sworn in on May 11th, along with the other 128 MSPs. Malcolm is the only directly elected Labour MSP in Edinburgh, and continues a Parliamentary career which began in 1992, when he succeeded Ron Brown as the Westminster MP for Edinburgh North & Leith.

Malcolm will continue to hold weekly surgeries every Saturday morning, in Leith Library from 9.00, and in Royston Wardieburn Community Centre from 11. Thanks to Ellie Casson for the picture.

Malcolm Chisholm's web site >>>
Newslink: Armed Forces Day 2011 in Edinburgh & Leith: The Scotsman, June 27th >>> Do YOU mind what it was like to be young in Leith? Well, they do at The Citadel! Group of people seated round a table listening to a young man talking

^^^ Above: Group discussing the need for more things for young people to do in Leith

The Citadel Youth Centre, Leith, teamed up with Leith Open Space on Friday May 20th to hold a discussion afternoon based around the theme: "What's it like to be young in Leith?

Citadel Manager, Willie Barr joining in the discussion about alcoholTopics of concern were the need for more things to do in Leith - at realistic and affordable prices, territorialism, alcohol and drugs; curfew times, gang culture, drug dealers, and identity issues. Young people argued that the closure of local amenities was making it easier for drug dealers to target them.

The issues voted as the highest priorites were, the need for Cheaper leisure choices, the pressure from peers to drink, the need to be brave about your identity, a call for youth clubs and agencies to work together to break down territorialism, and the role of policing and policy on gangs.

Young man in grey track suit stands talking to two seated young womenYou can read much more about some of the surprising things people said in Fay Young's report on the Leith Open Space web site. The event was facilitated by Maggie Havergal.

^^^ Above: Willie Barr of the Citadel listening to discussion about alcohol issues
>>> Right: Gary of the Acorn Centre hears about drug dealers
Below: Maggie Havergal watches April Cumming sharing feedback on alcohol issues

Read Fay Young's full report on Leith Open Space web site >>>
Citadel Youth Centre web site >>>

A young woman standing by flip chart pages listens to a group of young people as Maggie Havergal in a casual blue suit watches on
P r i d e Edinburgh: May 7th 2011 Groups of people waving, standing on the steps of the Omni Centre, with the St James Centre in the background

More pictures of Pride 2011 on Leith & North >>>
Montgomery St Park: The Wall comes tumbling down View of Montgomery St Park seen from the play park with JCBs and men clearing away rubble and digging a foundation trench

^^^ Above: The site on Montgomery St Park being prepared for the building of steps down to the park

Little girl in yellow waterproof holding out piece of rubble, as men break up concrete behind her. The Montgomery St Park Masterplan started to come together on the Spring Bank Holiday morning of May 30th.

Friends of the Park have consulted with local residents over some three years as to how the park should look. The group recently won a £40,000 grant from WREN. The grant will pay to build plaza sytle steps down from the play park to the green part of the park.

Right >>>: Josie shows her interest in the work. Thanks to Tasca Shadix, secretary of the Friends of Montgomery St Park for the picture.

Friends of Montgomery Street Park web site >>>
Under The Stars: open air movies in the sun Groups of people waving, standing on the steps of the Omni Centre, with the St James Centre in the background Two women taking flyers from a smiling woman in a white tee shirt with pink logos Essential Edinburgh, the Central Edinburgh Improvement District, added a new strand to Edinburgh's Film Festival this year

June 16th to 19th saw a series of free open air blockbuster screenings in the early evenings in St Andrews Square Gardens. Leith & North loves the idea, though maybe with a bit of carbon offsetting for the giant plasma screens? Film buffs: can you work out what this movie was?

Left <<<: One of the Edinburgh Film Festival team hands out flyers

Essential Edinburgh web site >>>
Newslink: Mark Lazarowicz & Gordon Munro call on Scotish Government to fund Fort replacement: July 11th Pop up gallery pops up in Gayfield A new gallery space has popped up off Gayfield Square.

The ambitious gallery opens from a mews directly out on to the street, which gives it a very distinctive ambience. It plans to hold a range of month long exhibitions featuring different genres and media. The gallery is currently showcasing paintings and sculptures by Portuguese artists.

Man with shirt sleeves rolled up beside two small sculptures wtih three medium sized paintings on the wall behind him View of some sculptures looking out through open shutters to St Mary's Primary school Left <<<:Curator Andy Forgie
Right >>>:The gallery looking out towards St Mary's primary.
Newslink: Telford student hairdressers offer low price cuts throughout Summer 2011: Evening News, June 20h >>> Leith Biomass Plant: Two people say YES! Zoe sits in front of banners asking questions about the Leith Biomass Plant such as "Who will verify Forth Port' claim of carbon savings?

^^^ Above: Friends of the Earth campaigners pose some of the many questions hanging over the Leith Biomass Plant.

Leith Biomass Plant IS still coming - unless Leithers unite to stop it. Your chance to object closed on March 11th! The SNP Government received 1900 responses, and is STILL working it's way through them. Malcolm Chisholm, (Labour's candidate to continue as MSP, for Edinburgh Northern, as the constituency will now become) questioned SNP Energy Minister Jim Mather in the very last session of Parliament. Jim Mather revealed that at the present count, 1,156 had objected, 2 had written in favour, and a further 732 had yet to be logged.

Meantime, you can find out more on the No Leith Biomass web site, which spells out the pros and cons to help you make up your own mind. There is also a model objection letter for you to download, copy, personalise and send off. Leith & North says "It'll be very big; it'll be very smelly; and it'll be very ugly (probably - we're keeping an open mind).

Three people look at an A Board saying "SAY NO TO LEITH BIOMASS Malcolm in winter wear talking with Sally in an indigo cast with Holyrood in the background Left <<<:Three Leithers reading about the Biomass Plant.
Right >>>: Malcolm Chisholm being briefed by campaigner Sally Miller.
Sidebar >>>: Mark Lazarowicz with mock ups of the Biomass Plant
Sally Miller one of the campaigners, summed things up "Forth Ports with all their legal resources have had over a year to draw up their proposals and make their case - local residents been given 28 days". Malcolm Chisholm has been active in opposing the proposal, along with others, including all three Leith Councillors.

Malcolm Chisholm in his formal letter of objection writes: "It is fair to say that nobody has contacted me in support of the proposal so I am in no doubt that the proposal is overwhelmingly opposed by the community in Leith and further afield." You can read the full letter on Malcolm Chisholm's web site >>>.

Local activist Mona Tarbuck who has been fighting the Seafield Stench for years, declared that she feels even more strongly about the Biomass Plant - that's how bad she thinks it will smell!

In his closely argued letter of objection, Leith Councillor Gordon Munro wrote "The proposal does not 'contribute towards a high quality sustainable living environment' and is damaging to 'Leith Conservation Area'...The plant will be visible from the Pentland Hills, Fife, East Lothian, the Firth of Forth, as well as the World Heritage Centre in the City Centre". You can read the full letter by downloading here >>>.
Below: Actual plans of the Biomass Plant are not available: here is a projection based on the known dimension of the proposed plant.

Mocked up view of the Biomass Plant as it might be seen looking from the Shore to Leith Docks

NO to Leith Biomass web site >>>
Cockburn Society and Architecture & Design Scotland make objections: The Scotsman, March 15th >>>
Friends of the Earth USA support the No Campaign: Evening News, March 30th >>>
Biomass protests at Grangemouth: Evening News, May 17th >>>
Newslink: 21st Century homes in Muirhouse?: The Scotsman, August 11th >>> Who might live in a house like this? View of the single story house in Royal Terrace Gardens with To Let sign The Grade B listed cottage in Regent Terrace Gardens has been up for let.

The closing date was June 1st 2011. We have been intrigued by this property for years, and await further developments with interest.
Newslink: Police appeals for help solving crimes in Leith & North Edinburgh: Lothian & Borders Police web site >>> Eddie Izzard enjoys the Sunshine on Leith Dockers with Scottish Labour Lesley in black floral dress and shades, Iain in suit without tie, Karen in yellow patterned frock with shades, Malcolm in anorak cheering and Eddie in blue suit, smiling

^^^ Above: Left to right Lesley Hinds, Iain Gray, Karen Doran, Malcolm Chisholm and Eddie Izzard

Simon in a green sweater, Mary in a black coat and Eddie in a blue jacket Eddie Izzard took a break from campaigning "Yes" to AV, to join Iain Gray and local Labour Party members at a barbeque in Leith Dockers Club.

Eddie enjoyed the celebrated sunshine on Leith and a burger on Sunday April 26th. Eddie and Iain Gray, walked round Leith Dockers club greeting members, who'd packed the place out for the crucial Old Firm fixture.

Right >>>: LEITH FM's Simon Fielding and Mary Moriarty with Eddie Izzard.
Newslink: Edinburgh Diazepam death rate highest in Scotland: Evening News, August 10th >>> Question Time style Election Debate on Poverty held at Leith Walk SYHA Hostel Malcolm Chsholm with loud hailer talking to UNISON members outside City of Edinburgh Council Chambers

^^^ Above: Left to right Malcolm Chisholm (Labour), Alison Johnstone (Green), John Dickie (Chair of Child Poverty Action Group - standing), Shirley-Anne Somerville (SNP), Jacquie Bell (Lib Dem), Ken O'Neill (Independent), Catriona Grant (SSP)

Poverty hustings at the Haddington Place Youth Hostel attracted a small audience, but a high level of debate.

Questions and issues covered included, the financing of local government, central government measures to alleviate poverty versus local accountability, the impact of poverty on children's health, wellbeing and learning, children's centres and support for early years, school uniform grants, working motherhood, poverty proofing government measures, custodial sentencing and rehabilitation policy, and dealing with the root causes of poverty versus tinkering round the edges. Broadly, there was cross party agreement on the living wage of £7.15.

Sheila Low (Tory candidate for Northern & Leith,) was sunny and presented an agenda on education and wealth creation which seemed to understand some, but not all of the issues. Malcolm Chisholm (Labour candidate for Northern & Leith,) was perhaps the most reflective and considered, with a broad understanding of the issues, and a focus on children's early years. Alison Johnstone (Green, list) was knowledgeable and commited. Shirley-Anne Somerville (SNP candidate for Northern & Leith,) was well briefed, commited and very professional, but hampered by having to defend several SNP policies and the Scottish Executive's four year record, throughout the debate. Jacquie Bell (Lib Dem, list) was knowledgeable, and sensible, but had a distracting way of speaking. Ken O'Neill (Independent, list) got off to an embarrassing start by quoting an infants' story book, but was concerned, thoughtful, idealistic, and willing to explore ideas. Catriona Grant (SSP, list) spoke with passion, calling for a progressive tax to pay for local services, and also had wide understanding of the issues from the field, as a social worker.

Some spoke better than others, noone disgraced themselves, although the Tory, Sheila Low (Conservative, not pictured) seemed to focus on the role of schools and education, and a simple view of wealth creation as the sole solutions to the problems.

The debate in the Question Time format was organised by the Poverty Alliance, the Child Poverty Action Group, Oxfam and Save the Children and Playbusters. It took place on April 26th and was chaired by John Dickie of CPAG and lasted well over two hours.

CPAG Scotland web site >>>
Edinburgh Central Hostel page on SYHA web site >>>
Newslink: Fire hit Khushi's owner thanks Fire Service in style: Evening News, July 2nd >>> Victoria Primary School, Newhaven celebrates Enterprise and Healthy Living Group seated at a table with a blue and white check table cloth

^^^ Above: Leith Councillor Marjorie Thomas, and MP Mark Lazarowicz join pupils Divan and Joshua, and Headteacher Mrs Thomson for tomato and basil soup

Victoria Primary School's P6 & P7 invited local people to enjoy all they have learned as part of the Enterprise & Active Learning. Guests were treated to a three course meal of tomato & basil soup, shepherd's pie and chocolate coated strawberries and ice cream.

Two young women with purple and pink dyed hair posing as they serve up shepherd's pie A boy and a girl clearing the tulip table decorations away The whole menu was part of a fortnight long project, in which pupils budgeted, prepared and served up the whole meal. As Mrs Thomson said the menu was about healthy eating with both pleasure and reward. Leith & North's editor was impressed with both the ambitious pupils pictured above, one of whom wishes to go into software design, the other into business. The event took place, February 7th at the school in Newhaven.

Below: Leith Councillors Marjorie Thomas, Gordon Munro and Rob Munn share a joke with Mrs Thomson

The three Councillors stand to speak to the school in the gym hall, with Mrs Thomson and pupils seated at dining tables

Victoria Primary School web site >>>
Read more about Victoria Primary's activities on Leith & North >>>
Newslink: Renewable energy for hundred of homes from Seafield site? Energywatch web site >>> LGBT Lives Exhibition sponsored by LGBT health Jo Clifford in olive coloured dress The LGBT Lives Exhibition ran from March 25th to 31st in the Old Drill Hall, Dalmeny St. The Exhibiton was organised by LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender) Centre for Health & Wellbeing, celebrating and giving expression to the varied voices and experiences of some 40 LGBT artists.

Poet and playwright Jo Clifford (pictured left,) spoke with joy and inspiration of seeing all the visions displayed "cutting an imaginary ribbon, and cracking open an imaginary bottle of champagne, and naming this ship “The Amazing Exhibition”.

Full story on Leith & North >>>
Newslink: Statutory Repair scheme scandal - Latest: Evening News, July 21st >>> March World Cafe: Malcolm Chisholm is guest celebrity chef Malcolm Chisholm (in white shirt with six of the World Cafe workers in the kitchen

World Cafe takes place on the last Friday of every month, and each month invites a local celebrity to work in the kitchen. In March it was "Malcolm Chisholm Cooks For You" time. Malcolm, who is standing again as the MSP for Edinburgh North & Leith prepared and served an appetising and nutritious lentil soup, as befitted a former Scottish Health Minister.

World Cafe offers a spectacular, home cooked, eat all your buffet at five pound a head. The cafe area in North Edinburgh Arts Centre is spacious and attractively decorated, and there was some haunting live singing to accompany the meal. World Cafe is organised by CORE (Community Organisation for Racial Equality) and opens at 5.00pm. Soft and alcoholic drinks are available for sale to accompany your meal. The menu also included homemade styled Chinese veg dish, African spinach, Moroccan chicken, and a tasty Pakistani rice.

A man and a woman serving food from tables Malcolm serving soup to a woman in a purple head scarf Left <<<: CORE staff serving food.
Right >>>: Malcolm serving up the lentil soup he made earlier.
North Edinburgh Arts Centre web site >>>
CORE (Community Organisation for Racial Equality) web site >>>
CORE World Cafe on facebook >>>
Newslink: If you go down to Cairn Energy HQ, you'd better go in disguise...: The Scotsman: July 19th >>> City of Edinburgh Council hell bent on privatisation of services Malcolm Chsholm with loud hailer talking to UNISON members outside City of Edinburgh Council Chambers

UNISON members were joined by Malcolm Chisholm and Sarah Boyack MSPs for Edinburgh North & Leith and Central, on a dark, dreich December morning to lobby the Council meeting. Malcolm and Sarah called upon the Council to halt its reckless privatisation programme.

Edinburgh Council, currently run by the Liberal Democrats and the SNP voted on December 16th to spend a further £1 million in a tendering process which will involve up to a quarter of Council services. This is in the face of its troubled relationship with tramwork contractors Bilfinger-Berger, and despite four of the companies in the tendering process having received multi-million pound fines for price fixing in public sector contracts.

UNISON web site >>>
Newslink: FOI requests show Bonnington Primary fallen into disrepair: Evening News, August 9th >>> Launch of the 2010-11 Adult Education Programme at Drummond High Two rows of women tribal belly dancing Drummond Community High launched its new programme of adult education courses for the autumn and winter with a week long series of events in early September. Various classes were demoed including the tribal belly dancing, pictured above featuring Tribal dancers Twisted Tails.

Venues in the Leith and North Edinburgh area include Broughton High, Dr. Bells Swimming Pool, Drummond High, Duncan Place Resource Centre, Forth Community Wing, Leith Community Centre and Leith Primary School.

Why not check out Autumn adult education courses in Edinburgh on the Council web site? >>>
Police seek relatives of the late Alexander Rhynd Waddell of Balfour St: Evening News: June 7th >>>