Community council back up and running

All 15 members of the new Montrose Community Council, with chairman Ron Campbell in the middle and the other office-bearers seated
All 15 members of the new Montrose Community Council, with chairman Ron Campbell in the middle and the other office-bearers seated

The newly reformed Montrose Community Council hopes to be the “eyes and ears” of the town the body has stated.

The inaugural meeting of the community body was held on Wednesday (December 11) evening at Montrose Sports Centre to appoint officer-bearers.

The community council was dissolved on September 12 by Angus councillors due to a low turn out at its meetings and its membership falling below the minimum required for a number of months.

Shortly after, Montrose man Jim Shaw launched a petition to get the body back up and running, and after a period of nomination, 13 residents came forward to stand as community councillors.

Angus Council’s returning officer Sheonagh Hunter opened the meeting last Wednesday by proposing a vote for committee members.

She said a maximum of 17 full community councillors and four youth members, who are under 16 years old, could form the community body.

The 13 Montrose residents who submitted their nominations to stand as members attended the inaugural meeting, as well as two more townsfolk, who were co-opted onto the community council at the meeting, bringing the total to 15 community councillors for the burgh.

Mrs Hunter said: “Montrose Community Council is not here for you to air your personal views, but for the people you represent and to do that fairly, you need to be out there in the community and be in consultation with residents.”

Ron Campbell was appointed chairman until at least October next year, Jim Shaw is treasurer, Ted Smith is correspondence secretary, Mark Cessford is minute secretary, planning contact is Sandy Munro and Michael Anderson is the assistant planning correspondent.

Mr Campbell said: “We need to act as the eyes and ears on what is happening in Montrose.

He added: “I think the reason we’re here tonight is because of Jim. He was so aghast that the previous council was dissolved. He set out to get 20 signatures on a petition, I said let’s not get 20, let’s get 30.”

Mr Shaw and Mr Campbell collectively got a total of 28 people to sign the petition, before it was submitted to Angus Council.

Mrs Hunter introduced Rachel Green, community liaison officer for Angus Council, to the community councillors at their first meeting, who said: “As you continue to meet, more and more people in Montrose will know you’re the body through which they can air their views.”

Montrose Community Council has agreed to meet on the last Thursday of every month. The next meeting will be on January 30 in Montrose Sport Centre’s GP room and will be open to the public from 7.30 p.m.

On the agenda for the second meeting is whether the community council will take on the town’s Christmas lights, a possible sub-committee for youths and the appointment of a