Scottish Borders Council

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Headquarters, Newtown St Boswells

Contact: Jenny Wilkinson, Clerk to the Council  Tel: 01835 825004 Email:

No. Item


Welcome and Introductions


The Chairman welcomed Malcolm Dickson, Steve Mitchell and Ralph Roberts to their first meeting of the Strategic Board.  He also paid tribute to the work of John Raine, who had recently retired as Chairman of NHS Borders Board.  There was then a round of introductions.




Apologies had been received from Mr D. Alexander (Eildon Housing), Councillor S. Aitchison (SBC), Councillor S. Bell (SBC), Mr S. Gourlay (Scottish Fire & Rescue), Councillor C. Hamilton (SBC), Mr Tony Jakimciw (Borders College), Ms Elaine Morrison (Scottish Enterprise), and Mr Simon Mountford (SBHA).



Borders Director of Public Health Report 2018 pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Consider Annual Report and update on Public Health Reform.  (Copy report and presentation attached.)

Additional documents:


3.1       Copies of the Director of Public Health’s Annual Report 2018 had been circulated, and Dr Tim Patterson gave a presentation, highlighting the 6 priorities with associated key areas for action:

·         Priority 1:  A Borders where we live in vibrant, healthy safe spaces and communities

·         Priority 2:  A Borders where we flourish in our early years

·         Priority 3:  A Borders where we have good mental wellbeing

·         Priority 4:  A Borders where we reduce the use of and harm from alcohol, tobacco and other drugs

·         Priority 5:  A Borders where we have a sustainable, inclusive economy with equity of outcomes for all

·         Priority 6:  A Borders where we eat well, have a healthy weight and are physically active


3.2       Tim Patterson confirmed that an action plan would be developed and the Community Planning outcome measures updated as a result of this.  In response to questions, Dr Patterson confirmed that boredom and loneliness were included under mental health, especially its impact on older people, and it was hoped that communities would help through actions in Locality Plans; work was ongoing to develop funding to try to address health in the workforce in smaller companies; and there were encouraging signs from the work of the family nurse programme in trying to reduce smoking in young mothers.  There followed some discussion on low carbon and sustainability and the option of sharing property and transport.  Dr Patterson then gave an update on public health reform with the formation of Public Health Scotland.  Allyson McCollom would circulate copies of a response to the consultation on this to members of the Board.





Minute pdf icon PDF 158 KB

Consider Minute of previous meeting of the Community Planning Strategic Board held on 7 March 2019.  (Attached)


Copies of the Minute of Meeting of 7 March 2019 had been circulated.  In response to a question with regard to paragraph 7, the Best Value Audit, SBC Executive Director Philip Barr confirmed that the draft outcome of the audit was expected in about 6 weeks and publication of the final report would be in October 2019.


AGREED to approve the Minute.



Child Poverty Action Plan pdf icon PDF 88 KB

Consider Child Poverty Action Plan.  (Attached)

Additional documents:


5.1       Copies of a report by the Director of Public Health on the development of a Child Poverty Action Plan in response to the Child Poverty (Scotland) Act 2017, had been circulated.  Allyson McCollam, Associated Director of Public Health, presented the Action Plan, whose 3 main drivers were income from employment; income from social security and benefits; and the cost of living.  Scottish Government guidance required Local Authorities and the NHS to produce joint reports by June 2019.  This single joint Plan from the Community Planning Partnership was intended to fulfil that need.  Once submitted to Scottish Government, the Plan would be assessed by an independent body which would provide comments.  As this was the first Plan, current activities were described as well as the future direction including a step change in the approach.  Reporting would also go beyond children’s services and include other partners.  There was also a need to demonstrate how families experiencing low income/living in poverty were being engaged and what impact any changes being made were having on them.  This was work in progress and would be strengthened in future.  There were 5 main work-streams:  employability; housing; customer services, including welfare benefits advice; education; and health & wellbeing.  There was a very specific duty placed on NHS to have pathways in place for young children, with Scottish Government setting long term targets for 2030 for reductions in poverty, with milestones along the way.  Some national support and guidance had been provided around those.  Whichever measures were chosen, either 1 in 4 or 1 in 3 children in the Borders was living in poverty and with the Borders being a low wage economy, progress for young people may not be quite as positive as elsewhere.  It was recognised at the recent Community Planning Programme Board that this Action Plan combined both strategic and operational aspects of work so this needed to be separated out, the economic development aspects captured, and further discussion be taken forward with the Third Sector. 


5.2       In response to a query regarding Scottish Government’s 4 definitions of poverty and measures, Ms McCollam advised that the Improvement Service was carrying out some work which may give local authorities more trackable measures.  In terms of engaging with the public, in particular those experiencing poverty, there were no direct ways at the moment but any ideas on how to do so without stigmatising people would be welcomed.  The Third Sector may also be able to provide support.  This was a really important Community Planning initiative with further work required on how best to take actions forward.




(a)     to approve the Child Poverty Action Plan for submission to the Scottish Government; and


(b)     that a further report would be provided to the next meeting of the Strategic Board on how the governance, including reporting, of the Action Plan would be taken forward.




Draft Scottish Fire & Rescue Strategic Plan 2019 - 2022 pdf icon PDF 380 KB

Consider SFR Strategic Plan consultation.  (Summary report attached)


Copies of the Draft Scottish Fire and Rescue Strategic Plan 2019 – 2022, which was currently out for consultation, had been circulated.  Steven Mitchell advised that the consultation was available on Citizen Space until 18 July 2019, with all partners invited to provide comments.  The Plan “Working Together for a Safer Scotland” had 4 broad outcomes around prevention, response, people and public value.  Discussions were currently underway to broaden the role of the fire fighter to the benefit of communities, which was all about working together in partnership.  Members of the Board offered their congratulations on the expanded services and the partnership working by the Fire and Rescue Service.




Scottish Borders Community Plan Action Plan pdf icon PDF 73 KB

Update on progress with the 15 outcomes in the Community Plan.  (Action Plan attached)


Copies of the Community Plan Action Plan 2019 had been circulated, which gave details of the expected outcomes for each Theme along with actions to deliver the outcomes.  Still to be added were the progress RAG status and timescales for each action.  Shona Smith, SBC Communities & Partnership Manager, confirmed that while a lot of progress had been made, there was still much to be done.  At the recent CP Programme Board meeting, the Theme Leads had been asked to add in the timescales and resources for actions.  Some of the measures and targets may change now that they had all be brought together into the one document.  Dr Patterson confirmed that with regard to Our Health & Wellbeing Theme, a lot had happened since indicators had first been identified so these now needed to be re-visited to make them much more specific and smarter.  The Chairman commented that many of the outcomes were general and aspirational, so it would be helpful for monitoring purposes if they could be more quantifiable, including a definition of short, medium and long term.  Updates on each action would not be expected everu time.  Superintendent McInnes also commented on the next cycle of local policing plans which were due at the end of the year which may change some of the actions and measures if the public’s priorities had changed.  It was important that there was a golden thread running through all plans.  Mrs Hume commented that it would be good to get Third Sector measures into the Action Plan, such as Men’s Sheds and University of the Third Age, and Ms Smith confirmed that these, and any other measures, would be welcomed. 


AGREED to receive an update on the Action Plan at the next Board meeting.



Locality Plans and Emerging Key Priorities pdf icon PDF 373 KB

Consider Locality Plans and emerging key priorities (Draft Locality Plans attached)

Additional documents:


With reference to paragraph 6 of the Minute of 7 March 2019, copies of draft Locality Plans for each of the 5 areas had been circulated.  Copies of a document with the key priorities which had come out of discussions at the Area Partnerships were issued at the meeting.  Shona Smith, SBC Communities & Partnership Manager, advised that the next stage was to take the Plans and key priorities to other stakeholders to see if they agreed with the content.  The Locality Plans were dynamic documents and would evolve as progress was made and it was important that these were driven by local communities and in partnership.  Ms Smith gave the example of transport, which had not been included as a priority in the original Community Plan due to lack of evidence but was now likely to be included in the next version as it had been included in each Locality Plan.  Philip Barr, SBC Executive Director, explained that the intention was to measure success on a regular basis but also be prepared to change as communities asked for priorities to change.  Further work would be needed on communication with communities to ensure people knew what was happening and where to find information.




Community Plan Annual Performance Report

Consider requirements of the Annual Performance Report. 


Colin Banks, SBC Locality Development Officer, advised that each Community Planning Partnership had to publish what they had been doing with regard to Community Partnership work.  The aim was to include this Performance Report as an addendum to the Community Plan, reflecting on the work that had been carried out and also a plan for the following 12 months.  Further details would be worked up on the 3 Quality of Life Theme outcomes and presented to the CP Programme Board and if these were approved then the same would be done for the other Themes’ outcomes and brought to the Strategic Board thereafter. 


AGREED to receive at the next Board meeting further details and an update on progress with the Annual Performance Report, including an anticipated timetable for reporting.   


Any Other Business


Mr McGrath, Chairman of the Scottish Borders Community Council Network, made reference to the growth of Men’s Sheds, with the SBCCN AGM recently being held in the Kelso Men’s Shed.  Shona Smith, SBC Communities & Partnership Manager, explained about the role of the Men’s Shed Co-ordinator who reported quarterly.


AGREED to have a presentation and update from the Men’s Shed Co-ordinator and representatives from Men’s Sheds in the area at the next meeting of the Board.


Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Strategic Board is scheduled for Thursday 12 September 2019 at 2.00 p.m.


The date of the next meeting of the Strategic Board was confirmed as Thursday 12 September 2019 at 2.00 p.m.





Scottish Borders Council

Council Headquarters Newtown St. Boswells Melrose TD6 0SA

Tel: 0300 100 1800


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