Kilsyth land revelation stuns meeting

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A DRAMATIC revelation at a meeting to discuss the wrangle over common areas on Rennie Road seems to have shed new light on the ownership of the land.

One of the residents produced a document he retrieved from the North Lanarkshire Council (NLC) archive at Lenziemill, which contained details of a meeting on February 24, 1971.

He explained: “It’s an extract of a report given to a Kilsyth Town Council committee meeting. What it states about the maintenance of Scottish Special Housing Association (SSHA) ground is that the council should accept responsibility of common ground, including trees and shrubs.”

He added: “It goes on, ‘The borough has accepted that the responsibility for any common areas should be accepted, if any, on completion of the scheme. The proposed £500 charge is withdrawn.’ There was a mention of that possible charge earlier in the report.”

The stunned group of residents in attendance burst into applause as Martin Dickson, local regeneration manager for NLC, and Councillor Jean Jones leafed through the document.

Mr Dickson added: “I wish we had this two years ago. Genuinely, thank you for bringing this along. We will pass this to our lawyers to look over.”

Councillor Jones commented after the meeting: “This agreement was between the two bodies, SSHA and Kilsyth Town Council, and this was superseded by the Deed of Conditions lodged in the early 80s, before any homes were sold, saying they were all responsible for 1/52 share of maintenance.

“Once we have a response from our legal department, myself or Martin Dickson will be writing to the residents to update them as soon as possible.”

The meeting in Kilsyth Academy on Monday night had originally been arranged in an attempt to appoint a factor for the first time in nearly 10 years.

Duncan McNaught, chief executive of West of Scotland Housing Association, which owns the last remaining non-private homes in the estate, said: “In view of the information that has just come to light, I don’t think it’s appropriate to pursue the remaining items on the agenda.”