An Independent view with Councillor Alec Clark

The last couple of weeks have been a poignant reminder of the worldwide events of the last century. To see the young folk who took part in the various remembrance parades and ceremonies was a stark reminder to all of us that it was a generation of youngsters not much older than them who left these shores one hundred years ago with many of them never to return.

They marched off to a war which many thought would be over in a few weeks, to the hell of trench warfare where the dead would be counted in millions.

The next horror was the Second World War which again saw generations of young folk lose their lives on land, at sea and in the air.

Theirs was the ultimate sacrifice which cannot ever be forgotten and we have to remember that we live the lives we have today because of those who gave theirs on our behalf.

There have been other wars in the interim on the Korean peninsula, the Falklands and Afghanistan as well as other regional conflicts. We will remember them.

We are now well advanced on the journey to the start of construction of the new harbourside facility which in effect is stage two of the harbour improvements at Girvan.

This new building which will be built in a position just to the west of the stores that sit beside the Ailsa berth will house new shower, laundry and changing facilities for harbour users as well as a new harbourmasters office plus new direct entry public toilets including disabled facilities.

Building is due to start in January 2015 and should be completed for the spring.

This building will enhance the pontoons which provide a marina style harbour and are sure to make Girvan a popular stop for sailing vessels using the Clyde.

The dream of a new Girvan and south Carrick leisure centre is also on course with construction due to start in late summer /early autumn 2015 with a twelve month constuction period.

As you may know, South Ayrshire Council approved the four million pound funding for the centre earlier this year and hopefully the project which is being scoped at the moment will soon be adopted by Hubco Southwest which is a public – private partnership that takes forward the design and construction of building projects on behalf of public bodies.

South Carrick Community Leisure has been working in conjunction with SAC to take this project forward and also to take forward relevant funding applications.

It is always the most important point to keep the public informed of progress and I know that SCCL has plans to bring information forward in the near future.

The whole swimming pool scenario was one of the main reasons that I stood for election in 2012 and I do of course follow this very closely within the council knowing just how much it means to folk.

There is now another reason to visit Barr village.

It has a brand new fantastic playpark with all of the latest equipment. I had the pleasure of attending the official opening along with other local councillors and provost Helen Moonie where we were joined by members of the Barr parish development company, Barr Community Council, Barr primary school children and the residents of Barr.

A lot of hard work and effort has made all of this possible along with a mix of funding and co-operative working. It is well worth a visit as both chidren and parents will love it.

One other bit of good news is that the new primary school for Dailly has now been approved.

Demolition followed by construction will commence at the end of the spring/summer 2015 term with pupils being relocated at other venues in the village for the duration.

This is a fantastic vote of confidence in the village with a new seat of education guaranteed for future generations.

Lastly just a mention of the complicated state of affairs where South Ayrshire Council is holding open days to promote jobs that are available in schools for janitors, catering assistants, cleaners and school crossing patrols whilst at the same time cutting hours for staff in the same positions.

I can well understand the need for efficiencies due to ever tightening budgets but sometimes it can be hard to understand how these efficiences are managed. just imagine how those employees at the sharp end feel.