Invercarron Closure – Community Council Going to the Top

By Jane Cruickshank / August 10, 2021
shot of the resource centre and its large bay window area

AFTER a fiery meeting this evening, members of Stonehaven and District Community Council will continue their battle to save the Invercarron Resource Centre by requesting a meeting with the chief executive of Aberdeenshire Council and the chairman of the Integrated Joint Board.

SDCC will also write to Audit Scotland and to Marie Gougeon MSP to express their dissatisfaction at the lack of consultation over the recently announced decision to turn the centre into a permanent vaccine clinic.

Community Council determined to do everything they can

Last month, SDCC held an emergency meeting to discuss the planned closure of the centre that opened in 1995 to give our older residents a social hub. Following that meeting, a letter was sent to senior Aberdeenshire Council officers expressing their concerns.

At their meeting tonight, members heard from Councillors Agnew and Dickinson, who said they had not been involved in the decision making process – as the centre was already in use by Aberdeenshire Council Health and Social Care Partnership, the change in its function was seen as an operational matter.

Cllr Dickinson said: ”With regard to governance, my understanding is that the governance sits with the Integration Joint Board, on which there are councillors represented, Cllr Dennis Robertson being one.

”At the moment, this decision is not coming out of any governance structure that I can influence with a vote, though this does not mean I can not speak up and try to influence things.”

Mrs Dickinson added: ”I think one of the very important points is the lack of community engagement, this is a really important change of comunity use and the review that was promised should have happened.”

Audit Scotland and our MSP to be contacted

Jim Stephen is also chair of Stonehaven Town Partnership, STP. He said they had decided to go directly to the local authority’s chief executive Jim Savage with their concerns.

Chairman Bill Watson queried Mr Savage’s role in the matter and suggested the chair of the Integrated Joint Board also be invited to attend a meeting with the SDCC – and members readily agreed it should be a specially convened meeting.

Ian Hunter said: ”This is a serious failure of democracy again. We have seeen the closure of the Mackie Academy pool when we were virtually told it was none of our business.

”We are told this time it is an operational matter – this is absolutely outrageous.”

Mike Duncan asked if it was a matter that could be referred to Audit Scotland. He said he also felt MSP Mairi Gougeon MSP should be contacted. These suggestions were agreed.

Ian Hunter added: ”It is normal Scottish Government policy to work with the community. Here we have a terrible example of not working with the community.”

Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership is jointly accountable to Aberdeenshire Council and the NHS Grampian Board and is overseen by a joint board called the Integration Joint Board.

Jenny Reid - August 12, 2021

Just so wrong on many levels to stick a vaccination centre here, to the detriment of the elderly and vulnerable , please rethink this decision!

bellmannews - August 12, 2021

Hi Allan – this earlier article gives a bit more of the background to the story

Linda Lawson - August 12, 2021

The centre was opened as a community building & has been very well used over the years by umpteen groups. The idea to close it & use it as a vaccination centre is appaling. Surely the residents of Stonehaven deserve better than this!!

Allan Sutherland - August 11, 2021

Is it true that this is because the Scorrish Government can’t agree a funding deal with the Medical Practice for it to donthe vaccinations?

Frank Budd - August 11, 2021

I feel that this decision has been made without local consultation.
The Resource Centre is an important asset to the town and was used very regularly prior to the COVID situation.
The future of this facility should be of great concern to the residents of Stonehaven!!

Krista jackson - August 11, 2021

This is the heart of the community for a lot of people, our older community and also people with learning disabilities and people with long term illnesses. It is very wrong to close it down. It might be one of you needing somewhere to go in the future

Deryck coull - August 11, 2021

As a regular user of Invercarron resource centre before closure due to Covid I so enjoyed all the friendly,jovial company I and companions had there looked after by friendly bus driver and caring staff also my Saturday Lunch Club was always enjoyable a thing to look forward to. I had massive stroke in 2014 and Invercarron was one of my life savers . So please don’t close it. It’s a SIN

Vera coull - August 11, 2021

Thanks to those who ARE standing up for those who can’t stand up for themselves all the elderly stuck indoors often on their own we really need to stop this abomination taking place . Time some folks had a conscience 😱

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