Pollokshields Community Council to form breakaway Trust

Members of Pollokshields Community Council are set to form a breakaway Pollokshields Trust to allow for additional local community projects to be developed.

The proposal was unveiled at a meeting of community councillors on October 3.

Bill Fraser – who stepped down from his position of chair of the council during the meeting – is leading the move.

Mr Fraser said, at the October meeting: “The problem with the community council is that it is restricted by its constitution.

“It doesn’t allow for the employment of staff, the ability to own property or the option for its councillors to have limited liability.

“The Pollokshields Trust will hold more power and more authority amongst the city council and charities and will allow us to move projects forward.”

The community council ran the ‘Make Your Mark’ survey in February, which gave local people a chance to suggest improvements for the Pollokshields area.

Residents responded positively, with ideas to develop more green space, have cleaner streets and ensure structural work is carried out on dilapidated buildings.

The intention is that the formation of a trust will allow for these plans to be put into action.

Mr Fraser added: “It’s no longer enough just to be a community councillor.

“Fairly radical action was needed and that action can’t be taken by the community council.

“There is now an expectation of community involvement and that needs to be taken forward.”

David Meikle, Conservative Councillor for Pollokshields, was supportive of the move:

“The idea of a trust isn’t new. It is positive that this is back on the agenda and it’s needed to move matters forward.”

It is yet to be determined when the Pollokshields Trust will be officially inaugurated, however Mr Fraser is hoping to announce further details in the coming weeks.

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Pollokshields set for new arts venue following Playhouse closure

A move to create a new community arts space in Pollokshields is currently underway.

Pollokshields Community Council is exploring potential locations for a venue following the closure of the Pollokshields Playhouse on Albert Drive.

The Playhouse closed its doors on October 1 after the lease expired on previously derelict ground.

A variety of music, theatre, art and children’s events has been hosted at the transformed site in the past 12 months.

Michelle Montgomery Masters, community engagement liaison officer for Glasgow City Council, led the playhouse project and is keen to have it replicated elsewhere in the community.

She said: “Following the closure of the Playhouse, we will take a pause, then undergo a period of evaluation of the venture.

“However, given the success of the playhouse, we hope to find another venue within the community and re-open.”

Pollokshields community council raised £40,000 to finance the playhouse with donations from public bodies and charities.

Michelle hopes extra funding will allow for a new exhibition space to be established and pointed to the positive impact of the venue on the local community: “As well as attracting a great number of visitors, we also had a variety of groups and individuals take part in the events.

“Those who are unemployed, have mental health problems or low self-esteem got involved.

“Meanwhile the likes of the local girl guides and care workers also helped with fundraising and organising events.”

David Meikle, local councillor for Pollokshields, also hailed the achievements of the playhouse and backed the move for the project to be extended: “I’m keen that playhouse continues – what’s key now is locating a new site where it can be situated and I will do what I can to assist with this.

“Hopefully the Playhouse will be open and holding events again soon.”

A location for the new community venue is yet to be established.