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 Teviot and Liddesdale.  Further information on   local data and statistics




The theme for discussion this evening was ‘Our Quality of Life’.  The Chairman welcomed Russell Bell, Station Manager, Scottish Fire & Rescue Service; Jacqueline McGuigan, Deputy Local Area Commander, Police Scotland;  Norrie Tait, SBC’s Community Learning and Development Team Leader; and, Paul Brough,  Archive Manager, Live Borders. The Chairman explained that the guest speakers would give an introduction to the work their service was delivering in the Teviot and Liddesdale area to help improve quality of life.


3.2       Station Manager Bell, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) began by referring to the Community Fire and Rescue Plan for the Scottish Borders, a summary of which was included in the paperwork provided on the tables.  As part of a community partnership approach to make people safer in their home, the SFRS had developed a holistic ‘safe and well’ programme aimed at reducing unintentional harm in the home, for example through slips and falls, providing mental health support, fuel poverty and other vulnerabilities. They also promoted community resilience to improve outcomes for people involved in non-fire emergencies, such as flooding caused by extreme weather.  Station Manager Bell then advised of community partnership working to make Scottish Borders’ roads safer and work to reduce antisocial behaviour.  He discussed the aim to reduce the occurrence of unwanted fire alarm signals (UFS) and the impact they had on the wider community in terms of business disruption and road risk.  Station Manager Bell concluded by advising that the SFRS were committed to delivering these positive outcomes in an effective and professional manner, working with emergency service colleagues, community planning partners and local residents to ensure the best possible outcomes in relation to community safety. 


3.3       Inspector McGuigan, Police Scotland, referred to the Local Police Plan 2017-20 for Scottish Borders.  Following a consultation process with local community groups, seven local priorities had been identified: domestic abuse; road safety; violent crime; antisocial behaviour; drugs and alcohol misuse; protecting people; and, acquisitive crime.     Inspector McGuigan then discussed strong partnership working with the Council’s  Safer Communities Team, highlighting the proactive Drivewise campaign.  Inspector McGuigan then referred to the work undertaken by the Community Action Team (CAT) and their focus on dealing with Quality of Life issues.  The CAT provided a dedicated community resource, specifically targeting emerging and ongoing quality of life issues in each locality such as antisocial behaviour and on-street parking.  It was noted that any incidents to be referred to the CAT should be made through Elected Members. 


3.4       The Community Learning and Development (CLD) Youth Team Leader, Norrie Tait, Scottish Borders Council, then gave an introduction to the Community Learning Partnership.  Mr Tait explained that the CLD service priorities included:  promoting a whole town approach to engagement and participation with young people; developing family learning opportunities individually and through groups; and making informed choices for health and wellbeing.  Mr Tait then highlighted work ongoing in schools to target and accommodate young people such as the Growing in Confidence model which was a mental health tool delivered across schools and a Mentor in Violence programme about to be rolled out.  The CLD work ongoing in the Teviot and Liddesdale area included a strengthening family programme run in Hawick, an early intervention programme in Burnfoot which targeted P7 children, and a Holiday Hunger programme.    


3.5       Archive Manager, Paul Brough from Live Borders then gave an update on the work ongoing in the Teviot and Liddesdale area.   Live Borders’ focus was on engagement through partnership working and he referred to activities available in local libraries such as free access to Wi-Fi, and reading groups.     He then discussed the museum and archives partnership work with Alzheimer Scotland which had produced materials to spark reminiscence and raised awareness of memory loss; and, the support given by the Heritage Hub for research projects.   Live Borders staff also engaged with schools, youth clubs and community organisations and he referred to the recent intergenerational work by volunteers on the First World War and Stobs Camp projects.  Mr Brough concluded by advising that Live Borders also supported a range of facilities, fitness classes and health programmes and he highlighted the support and activities provided by the Teviot and Liddesdale Leisure Centre which could have a positive impact on the health of the community.  


3.6       Following the introductory talks, officers joined Elected Members, partners and members of the public at their tables for a discussion on the main issues relating to “Our Quality of Life” in the Teviot and Liddesdale Area.  Gillian Jardine explained how the session would work and that information packs had been provided on each table.  Those present were invited to discuss and agree what could be done to improve people’s quality of life and discuss ways of taking these forward in the Teviot and Liddesdale Area.  A summary of the output of the discussions was 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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