Scottish Borders Council

Agenda item

Theme: Quality of Life

A facilitated discussion on the subject in order to put forward a set of initial outcomes for Cheviot.


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3.0     The Chairman referred to the main item on the agenda – discussion around the theme

‘Our Quality of Life’ - and introduced the key speakers who each gave a brief summary of the work, relevant to the theme, being carried out by their organisation/section.


3.1     Inspector McGuigan highlighted the commitment of Police Scotland as identified in the

Local Police Plan 2017-20 for Scottish Borders. Following a consultation process there

were seven Local Police Priorities identified which linked to the themes within the Scottish.  Borders Community Plan: - domestic abuse; road safety; violent crime; anti-social behaviour; drugs and alcohol misuse; protecting people (including child protection); and acquisitive crime (incorporating rural crime, doorstep crime, housebreakings and thefts).  Police had strong links to the Council’s Safer Communities team with proactive campaigns such as Drivewise Borders and Crucial Crew.  Inspector McGuigan also drew attention to the work undertaken over the past year by the Community Action Policing Team which provided a dedicated community resource which would specifically target locality issues i.e. anti-social behaviour, young driver issues and was an additional resource to the Community Policing Team.  In response to a question about the importance of the Resilience Group in Jedburgh, Inspector McGuigan explained that the Group was crucial in times of extreme weather i.e. flooding and heavy snow fall.  Those present were supportive of the CAT which had been very effective at responding to problems raised locally.  The Community Officer within the schools had had a positive impact and early intervention was seen as key.

3.2     Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Group Manager, Michael Jaffray, made reference to the Local Fire and Rescue Plan for the Scottish Borders which was included in the paperwork provided on the tables. In particular he drew attention to the focus on helping people feel safer in their homes and on the roads. The service would work with local communities to improve outcomes, reduce inequalities and to build community resilience against extreme weather events such as flooding.  Action Plans were being developed to address key priority areas in the Scottish Borders. Mr Jaffray referred in particular to the aim to reduce unwanted fire alarm signals, where there was no fire but an automated fire alarm system was activated. This currently accounted for over 65% of emergency response activity across the Scottish Borders.  Mr Jaffray concluded by emphasising that the service wanted to work closely with communities and would welcome comments from local residents.


3.3     Donna Wood, from Scottish Borders Council, was in attendance to talk about the work of the Community Learning and Development Service and in particular the work being carried out with 11 – 25 year olds. There were 2 Learning Communities in the Cheviot area based around the secondary schools. The development of the learning communities enabled all key stakeholders to plan and work together to ensure improved outcomes for children and young people. Work was being carried out in schools and in particular with looked after and accommodated children and young people who may be failing to reach their full potential. Ms Wood referred to work undertake by the Service in terms of Youth Work, Adult Learning, Community Capacity, Voluntary participation and targeted work with Vulnerable Adults and children.  Ms Wood touched on projects such as summer activities, PEF Youth Workers, Season for Growth and recently held ‘Raising Teens Workshops aimed at Parents and Children and Mental Health First Aid.  It was highlighted that the new intergenerational school would provide family space and older people would be encouraged to go into the school to do additional learning.


3.4     Following the introductory talks, officers joined Elected Members, partners  

           and members of the public at their tables for a discussion of the main issues relating to “Our Quality of Life” in the Cheviot Area.  A pack of information was provided at each table to aid the discussion as were feedback sheets to record the emerging points. Following this first discussion period and a short break each group returned to their tables where they were asked by the Chairman to focus on prioritising the key issues raised and to discuss and identify ways of taking these forward within the Cheviot Area.  A summary of the output of the discussions were provided as an appendix to this minute.


Supporting documents:



Scottish Borders Council

Council Headquarters Newtown St. Boswells Melrose TD6 0SA

Tel: 0300 100 1800


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