Falkirk Labour Manifesto 2017 (For Bo’ness and Blackness Labour)

April 18, 2017

Falkirk Labour Manifesto 2017


Falkirk Labour has launched its manifesto for the 2017 Council Elections. Our candidates for the Bo’ness and Blackness ward, David Aitchison and Michael Burnett, were present at the event to talk about the manifesto and the focus on people and local communities that runs through it.

David Aitchison commented “The Falkirk Labour manifesto contains a great number of ideas to help improve things for people in our area. It looks to build on the achievements of the previous Labour led administration, that has seen cuts to its budget on a year by year basis.

We will show that we value local carers and the cared for by extending the amount of time carers can spend with their service users.

By investing more in council housing through new builds, buybacks and upgrading our existing stock, we will help more people into accommodation in the areas they want.”

I am a member of the Bo’ness and Area Community Bus Association, which is doing great work to get a community bus service to and from Edinburgh. Falkirk Labour will continue to campaign for new powers to be granted to councils to allow them to introduce publicly owned bus services that will benefit even more people”.

Michael Burnett added “This manifesto is the culmination of a great amount of work by members, activists, councillors and new candidates. It is a document we are proud of and we think it will really resonate with people in our area.

The council elections should be about communities, not the constitution. Our campaign is focused on what we want to do to help people in Bo’ness and Blackness as councillors.

The Falkirk Labour manifesto underlines this with solid commitments for more community wardens, the extension of employment schemes for young adults and extending the number of breakfast clubs available to school children, along with the introduction of summer holiday lunch clubs. Having been part of a group working on introducing a breakfast club to St Mary’s Primary, I can really see the benefits of ensuring our children get regular meals in a sociable environment.

We ask voters to take the time to read our manifesto. Our election address summarises the key themes of the document and this will be delivered to voters across Bo’ness and Blackness in the coming weeks. We are asking voters to give us their 1 & 2 votes in this election to help Keep it Local, Keep it Labour”.

Labour Care About Bo’ness and Blackness – Local Elections 2017

May 2, 2017

A Winning Team for Bo’ness and Blackness

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We are extremely proud of our community. So many people contribute to making Bo’ness and Blackness a great area to live in.

We want to work with the community to continue to improve our local services and facilities.


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We want to build on the work that has been done by Falkirk Labour and continue to find ways to preserve and enhance our
local facilities such as our library and Bo’ness Recreation Centre. We understand how important these are for so many

We will work together as an effective team, fighting hard to ensure Bo’ness gets the improvements to services and
facilities that are needed and well used by people of all ages.



Blackness is a jewel in the crown of Falkirk Council. The expansion of the John Muir Way has been positive, but we want
to do more.

We will work with local people and community groups to strengthen links between Bo’ness and Blackness.

Although we are extremely serious about honouring all of our manifesto commitments, we feel that the following three in particular are of critical importance to Bo’ness and Blackness communities.

Investing More in Council Houses

We feel there is a shortage of council housing stock across Bo’ness and Blackness. We are committed both to building
more council houses in the area and extending Falkirk Council’s buyback scheme of former council houses.
We will also upgrade the fabric of our existing council stock.

Valuing Carers and The Cared For

We will extend the amount of time carers can spend with their service users to ensure an enhanced level of care provision.

We will also increase post diagnostic support for people with dementia and deliver more care at home for those who
need it.

Publicly Owned Buses

To compliment the great work of Bo’ness Area Community Bus Association, we will use new council powers to introduce a
publicly owned bus service at affordable prices. This will focus on areas the private sector doesn’t deem profitable, particularly more rural areas such as Bo’ness and Blackness.

Labour’s manifesto for Holyrood

April 28, 2016

labourmanifesto1SCOTTISH Labour has launched its manifesto for the Holyrood elections on May 5.

Kezia Dugdale, the Scottish Labour Leader, said: “This election is about the choice we have as a country: to use our new powers or to stop the cuts. I choose to use the powers.”

She continued:  “Our manifesto makes clear who we are and what we stand for:

  • An anti-austerity pledge to increase spending on public services in real terms and stop the cuts
  • Real terms protection of the budgets for health, education, policing and culture
  • Funding for a breakfast club in every primary school and an after-school sports revolution for every secondary school
  • Introducing a 50p top rate of tax for earnings over £150,000 a year to invest in schools
  • Investing in skills to attract businesses to Scotland
  • Protecting local NHS services
  • Scrapping the unfair council tax and replacing it with a fairer system where 80% of households will be better off
  • Setting the basic and higher rates of income tax just 1p higher than the rate set by George Osborne so we can stop the cuts to public services
  • A ban on fracking

Read the manifesto online here, now.

“Our manifesto isn’t about the politician on the front cover; it’s about the people of Scotland. It is about the powers that Scotland holds. It is about the potential of our nation.”


Sign the petition for a FARE deal for Bo’ness

April 5, 2016

Councillor Dr Craig R. Martin – Scottish Labour’s candidate for Falkirk East in the 2016 Holyrood Elections – is calling for a fairer deal for bus travellers in Bo’ness.

First Bus has started a new pricing pilot in the Falkirk area, on the back of Councillor Martin’s call for lower prices. However, the new pilot doesn’t extend to Bo’ness.

Councillor Martin is calling on local people to sign a petition, asking the company to change its mind.

Councillor Martin, who started the campaign to lower bus prices over a year ago, said: “I was delighted that First stuck to their word when they announced their new pilot price structure. A charge of £15 for a weekly ticket to travel across the Falkirk Council area is a fair price and I hope it gets people to use buses more. However, I noticed it did not include Bo’ness.  I thought it only right that we start a campaign calling for FAREness for Bo’ness.

“I know that after I started my petition a few others have started. I would urge people to sign them all and put as much pressure on First bus as we can. It’s not right and not fair that Bo’ness is not included. All parts of the Falkirk area should be used in this pilot to gauge a true response to it.”

You can sign the petition at https://www.change.org/p/first-scotland-east-limited-fareness-for-bo-ness


SNP’s attack on council services

December 18, 2015

Scottish Labour’s Community spokesman has attacked the SNP Holyrood budget for the next financial year, calling cuts to local authorities “scandalous”.

Scots Councils – including Falkirk – will get around 7 per cent less grant funding (in real terms) in the year ahead.

Early estimates are that Falkirk’s cuts have now grown from an estimated £45 million over the next three years, to £51 million. 

Ken Macintosh, Scottish Labour’s community sp0kesman, said: “Anyone and everyone who relies on the vital services delivered by local councils across Scotland will feel the pain of John Swinney’s cuts.  Many Scots are already suffering from George Osborne’s austerity policies but far from making things better, the SNP Budget made the cuts in our communities a whole lot worse.

“A 7% cut in addition to the council tax freeze means local people will have nowhere else to turn.  This will be played out in reductions to our learning support services and our libraries, in the closures of our day centres and the removal of help for the elderly.

“Thousands of jobs are going to be lost – and every one of those decisions can be laid at John Swinney’s door.  These are cuts which John Swinney and the SNP are imposing, not the Tories.

“It makes no sense for the SNP Government to say they want to put education at the top of the agenda then impose brutal cuts to the councils who deliver budgets for our schools and teachers.

“This attack on local government goes way beyond political loyalty and I am calling on every Councillor – SNP, Labour and every other party across Scotland – to do right by our communities and say enough is enough to Swinney’s scandalous cuts to our services.

“John Swinney said he would ‘consult’ with his ‘partners’ in local government before implementing his budget.  We need to test him on his promise.  Every council and every councillor in Scotland, no matter which party they are a member of, needs to let John Swinney know that if goes ahead with these cuts, the effects will be devastating.

“The poorest and most vulnerable members of our communities will be hardest hit, but every family will be affected. Every cut will be the responsibility of John Swinney and the SNP Government in Edinburgh.

“It’s time for our Councils to fightback.”


Kinneil turbine plan rejected

December 18, 2015


Controversial plans to erect a giant wind turbine overlooking historic Kinneil Estate in Bo’ness have been rejected by the Scottish Government.

The move has been welcomed by one local councillor, who said it was “a victory for common sense”.

Councillor Adrian Mahoney said: “The turbine would have caused a blight on a historic park which features part of a World Heritage Site. I’m pleased the Government planning Reporter has dismissed the appeal and refused planning permission – upholding a previous decision by Falkirk Council to turn down the application.

“I am not against renewable energy, but this was the wrong application in the wrong location.”

Kinneil Power LLP wanted to build the turbine at Upper Kinneil, close to the western edge of Kinneil Estate. The turbine would have been 87 metres, or 285 feet in height (to the tip of its blades), and would have been visible from Kinneil’s Roman fortlet.

In dismissing the appeal, the Scottish Government Reporter, David Liddell, made reference to mock up supplied by the applicants.

He said: “The wireframes and photomontages supplied for viewpoint 17 show that the turbine, at a higher elevation and around 700 metres from the monument, would be very prominent beyond and above the tree belt fringing the southern boundary of the estate.

“Almost the full diameter of the turbine blades would be visible.

“In my view the moving turbine would introduce a highly conspicuous and discordant element into what appears presently to be the largely undeveloped setting of the fortlet. The appellant states that the turbine would not, depending on one’s precise location and viewpoint towards the monument, always be visible. Once noted, however, its presence would not easily be forgotten … ”

He went on to say: “In my judgement, the impact on the setting of this scheduled monument would be significantly adverse.”

West Lothian Council, Historic Scotland, Bo’ness Community Council and local residents had all objected to the proposal. Councillor Mahoney stepped aside from his role as a decision-maker on the planning committee to raise his objections. He is a founding member of the Friends of Kinneil charity and was concerned about the impact the large turbine would have on the sensitive historical site.

His concerns were shared by officers.

An initial report by Falkirk Council’s director of development services Rhona Geisler said: “The proposal represents an unacceptable form of development which would be contrary to the terms of the Development Plan due to significant concerns over the visual impact of the proposed turbine.”

Councillors decided in June to refuse the application. However the applicants appealed to the the Scottish Government’s Planning and Environment Appeals Division. The decision was announced this week.

You can read the full report here: https://www.dpea.scotland.gov.uk/Document.aspx?id=331438

Question Time with Kezia

September 30, 2015

“Scottish Labour is changing. Under my leadership nobody will be in any doubt about what the Scottish Labour Party stands for and who we stand with. We want a Scotland where a young person’s ability to get on in life is determined by their potential, work rate and ambition, not by where they were born or how much money their parents earn.

“That means closing the gap in our schools between the richest and the rest. I’ve put education at the heart of my leadership of Scottish Labour. That’s why I decided to dedicate a whole broadcast to it, which will be shown on national television tonight.”

You can watch our film Question Time here now:

Kezia Dugdale MSP, Scottish Labour Leader

Video: the choice facing you this May …

April 1, 2015

There is a choice at this election between two sets of values and two potential governments – Labour or Tory.

We need to stop the Tories being the largest party.

Another Tory government would be a disaster for Scottish Families
Only a Labour government can deliver the change we need.

Want to know more about Scottish Labour?
Website – http://www.scottishlabour.org.uk
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ScottishLabo…
Twitter – https://twitter.com/scottishlabour

When the SNP ushered in the era of Mrs Thatcher …

March 28, 2015

Exactly 36 years ago today, the Labour government led by James Callaghan was voted out of Downing Street following a vote of no confidence that they lost by one single vote.

The SNP joined with the Tories that day, giving them the 11 votes they needed to bring down the Labour Government.

The election that followed that vote saw Margaret Thatcher installed in Number 10 and our country was imposed with 18 years of a Tory government.

Many people will remember this day, but some may not remember the consequences it brought to our country. Take a look:



Scottish Labour: offering change for Scotland

January 21, 2015

Scottish Labour will change Scotland. That’s the message from our new video, which will be on TV tonight. Watch it here…