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The Latest news from Dumfries and Galloway Chamber of Commerce -

Keep up to date with the latest news and stories from across Dumfries & Galloway.

 

Council Leaders take action to try and save jobs at Annan

The Council Leader and Depute Leader have met with Government Ministers following the announcement by Young’s Seafood that they intend to close their site in Annan.

Council Leader, Elaine Murray and Depute Leader, Rob Davidson, issued the following statement following their meeting:

“At a time like this actions speak louder than words. Within the past 24 hours, we have met with the Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy and Connectivity and spoken to the Minister for Business Innovation and Energy to ask for support and intervention to preserve as many jobs as possible.

"Just because Young’s have announced this closure, does not mean that we accept this lying down.  We need to do everything that we can to take up the case with the company to persuade them to reconsider the closure of the site in Annan.

"We welcome the positive reaction from the Scottish Government today.  They recognise the scale and seriousness of the problem for the staff and the community of Annan and the importance of prompt, focussed action. Time is of the essence.

"We need a number of different agencies around the table to find a solution.  As a council, we are well placed to lead this and since the news broke yesterday, we have been concentrating on making this happen.  An action group involving the Council, Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government will be meeting on Friday.

"We know that acting quickly, as we have since the announcement was made, is only the first step. Our Administration and our Council is in this for the long term. We will support the staff and the wider community of Annan through this difficult time and for as long as it takes.”

PUBLIC EXHIBITIONS TO BE HELD FOR PROPOSED TROSTON WIND FARM

Local people are being given the opportunity to find out more about plans for a proposed new wind farm in Dumfries and Galloway.    

EDF Energy Renewables has confirmed that it will be hosting two information events on its initial proposals for a new wind farm to be built on land at Troston Estate, around eight kilometres west of Moniaive.

The company is looking at the potential to develop a scheme that would include up to 15 turbines, each with an approximate 4 megawatt generating capacity and with a maximum height to the blade tips of up to 149.5 metres.

To bring residents up to date with the proposal, drop-in exhibition events will be held on Thursday, 19th April at Dalry Town Hall (2.00pm – 6.30pm) and on Friday, 20th April at Glencairn Memorial in Moniaive (2.00pm – 7.00pm).

Members of the wind farm development team will be present at both events to answer questions on the plans. The information provided will include the proposed turbine layouts and 3D visual simulations to help residents understand what the wind farm will look like from various locations.

Visitors to the exhibitions will also have the opportunity to provide feedback on the proposals by completing a questionnaire available at the events.

Grant Folley, Onshore Wind Development Manager for the Troston scheme, said: “We take the utmost care with our site selection and believe that the proposed site is an excellent location for a wind farm.

 “If approved, the wind farm would provide low carbon energy for many years to come, so we would encourage anyone who has a question or is interested in the project to come along to discuss the plans with us.

“We are currently undertaking site surveys and other assessments that will enable us to compile our Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) which will accompany the planning application for the wind farm. The feedback gained from these initial exhibitions will help to shape our plans for the site.”

EDF Energy Renewables is an experienced wind farm developer and operator, with 34 onshore wind farms across the UK, including seven already operating in Scotland.  More details at www.edf-er.com

COuncil Statement on closure of Pinneys

Elaine Murray, Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council, said “It is terrible news that Pinneys of Annan are to close.  This will be a devastating blow for so many of the staff and their families. 

“Pinneys are the largest private employer in the region so I am greatly concerned about what this will mean for our local community.  The loss of 430 jobs including apprenticeships are individual tragedies, but to our local regional economy this is a further blow following on from a number of major recent losses.

“The Depute Leader and I have already written to the First Minister and requested Scottish Government intervention which has saved jobs in other parts of the country. 

“Our Council will support the company through this difficult period through PACE and our teams will provide support through our Business Gateway advisors and our employability teams.” 

Rob Davidson, Depute Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council, said “This is a terrible blow for the staff of Pinneys and their families.  The news that the company are creating 200 jobs at their Grimsby plant is of little consequence to the families who will be devastated by this announcement.  It is unrealistic to think that families will uproot from this tight knit community where their friends and family are to move to Grimsby.

“In our letter to the First Minister, we have stated that her support for the Scottish food and drink industry is needed in Annan now more than ever.  There is an opportunity to build on this thriving industry and investment can unlock the potential of this local industry and safeguard jobs and communities.  The help and leadership of the Government help and leadership at this critical time is needed so that a positive outcome can be found for the staff at Pinneys and also for their fish suppliers across Scotland.”

MSP AND MSYP UNITE TO FIGHTBACK AGAINST PINNEYS CLOSURE PLAN

South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth and Emily Davies MSYP for Dumfriesshire have come together to fightback against Youngs Seafood plans to close Pinneys of Annan.

Colin Smyth is urging the local community to get behind a petition against the closure launched by Emily.

The move by Youngs Seafodd will see Pinneys, which was established in the Annan area over 40 years ago, close their doors for the last time in the summer with the loss of 450 jobs unless the company can be convinced to reverse their proposals.

The petition which was launched by Emily after hearing the news of the closure plan from her step-father, who works at the factory, and aims to try to save as many jobs as possible.

The petition is aimed at Youngs Seafood, Marks and Spencers and the UK and Scottish Governments and states,

“One of South Scotland's largest private-sectors employers, Young's Seafood are looking to close their Annan factory. Pinneys currently have many deals supplying food orders to Marks and Spencer's and other supermarkets. As reported on the news, this closure will result in the loss of 450 jobs. At the same time as announcing this closure, Young's have announced that they are are doing well with new contracts with M & S and are looking to recruit 200 new staff at their Grimsby Factory. This closure will result in many people losing part-time and full time jobs and many families losing vital income. Pinneys not only provides jobs for adults but many young people from across Dumfries and Galloway.”

 

Emily Davies MSYP for Dumfriesshire said, “I started the petition to unite the workers, families and the whole community against these closure plans. Pinneys is an important part of the area’s history. A lot of young people from across Dumfriesshire started their careers at Pinneys, and many have continued to work there. I hope the petition will show the level of opposition there is to the closure and spur others into taking action to help the local economy. It is vital we try to save as many jobs as possible and look at ways we can develop new jobs in the area. This is about supporting people employed at Pinneys just now but also the generations to come who will need employment locally in the future”

Colin Smyth MSP for South Scotland said, “I have been inundated with emails and phone calls from families who are having to deal with the prospect of losing their jobs and their stories are tragic.  It would be easy for people to sit back and do nothing. But Emily is fighting back on behalf of her family and the hundreds of others in the area affected by this devastating decision. I would urge everyone to show their support for the Pinneys workforce and back Emily’s petition. Emily is sending a strong signal that local people will not take this closure lying down”.

Local Businesses Announce Merger

 

The directors of McGowan Miller Construction Consultants and the partners of M R Rodger & Partners are delighted to announce that as of the 1st April 2018, the two practices have merged. 

The combined firm will operate as McGowan Miller Construction Consultants and are based at the existing offices of McGowan Miller in Dumfries. 

The merger of the two long established local businesses has resulted in the provision of a versatile and even stronger professional service for both their existing and future clients.

The firm presently employs thirteen surveyors, complimented by four admin staff, who offer a wide range of construction related professional services throughout the UK. Services include:

· Quantity Surveying

· Building Surveying

· Project Management

· Health & Safety Advisory Services / CDM Consultancy services

· Design Services

· Planning and Building Warrant Applications

· Property Valuations

· Energy Performance Certification

More information, contact details, news updates and a library of previous projects can be found on their revamped website: www.mcgowanmiller.co.uk 

All enquiries can be directed to:

McGowan Miller Construction Consultants 

36 George Street

Dumfries

DG1 1EH

T: 01387 254283 E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.