Recent Press Releases
We publish all of our press releases from the last 12 months here so you can keep up to date.
Please email email@example.com if you'd like further details on any of our press releases.
If you want to speak to a communications officer, you can find their office-hours telephone numbers and what areas of the council they cover at www.dumgal.gov.uk/pressenquiry.
Monday, 25 September 2023 12:42
Dumfries and Galloway Council is pleased to announce that Multiply is coming to the region – a groundbreaking nationwide programme aimed at empowering adults to enhance their numeracy skills. With funding from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, Multiply is set to revolutionise the way adults approach and improve their mathematical abilities.
Numeracy skills play a crucial role in everyday life, from managing personal finances to making informed decisions. Aware of the importance of numeracy in today's rapidly evolving world, Dumfries and Galloway Council is delighted to collaborate on this initiative.
Through the Multiply programme, adults will have access to a wide range of resources and support designed to foster their numeracy skills:
Help will be available in a form that suits you.
Do you want to learn general maths in a class? We have that sorted.
Prefer to do practical maths so that you can cook, work out prices, or make sense of the adverts on TV? That's an option, too.
Feeling the pinch in the rising cost of living and want help with debt and managing your money? There are people that can help with that.
Across Dumfries and Galloway, the Council’s goal is to create supportive and inclusive learning environments where everyone feels empowered to ask questions, share their experiences, and collaborate.
Multiply is open to adults of all ages (19+) and educational backgrounds. Whether individuals are looking to improve their existing numeracy skills or start from scratch, Multiply offers a comprehensive framework to support their growth.
By connecting mathematical concepts to real-world situations, Dumfries and Galloway Council, through the Multiply programme, aim to make the learning experience more enjoyable and meaningful for participants.
Together, let’s multiply maths skills for life.
To register an interest or to find out more, simply email Multiply@dumgal.gov.uk and somebody will get back to you to chat with you about the skills you want and how you'd prefer to learn them.
Cllr Ian Carruthers, Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Economy and Resources Committee, said:
“We are delighted to announce that Multiply is coming to Dumfries and Galloway. This innovative programme aims to provide adults in our communities with the necessary mathematical skills to thrive in their personal and professional lives.
Maths is an essential skill that underpins various aspects of everyday life, from budgeting money to helping children with homework and unlocking job opportunities. Through the Multiply programme, Dumfries and Galloway Council seek to empower people to enhance their numeracy skills and increase their confidence.”
Cllr David Inglis, Vice Chair, said:
“The Multiply programme launch in Dumfries and Galloway is an exciting opportunity for adults to enhance their mathematical abilities and improve their quality of life. We invite all interested individuals to join us on this journey of learning and growth. Together, we can make a positive impact in our communities and equip adults with the skills to thrive.”
Monday, 25 September 2023 10:20Dumfries and Galloway Council is putting in place a temporary 20mph speed limit in Stranraer from 6 October 2023. The new limit is in response to a decision made at December 2021 Communities Committee, a target in the National Transport Strategy (NTS2), and feedback from the wider public.
This scheme aligns with the development of a national strategy for 20mph speed limits across Scotland, which will help support local communities and promote national government outcomes. To deliver safer roads, Transport Scotland has an aspirational target to ensure all appropriate roads in built-up areas will have a safer speed limit of 20mph by 2025.
Drivers to this policy include an ambition to improve road safety and health outcomes with additional consideration being given to active travel and climate change targets. The introduction of the new speed limit seeks to reduce perceptions of road danger, encourage people to walk, wheel and cycle, and will create more pleasant streets and neighbourhoods by providing a more equitable balance between different road users.
The Scottish Government and Dumfries and Galloway Council are committed to encouraging more people to travel by walking, wheeling and cycling; we recognise the barriers, which include concerns around safety on the roads especially for vulnerable and excluded groups. A package of 20mph measures can help reduce these anxieties, alleviate concerns and contribute to a reduction in casualty rates while improving inclusivity.
This self-enforcing, blanket 20mph speed limit will seek to encourage considerate and respectful driving within Stranraer and create a safer experience for town centre visitors. The temporary scheme will support people to shop local and shop safely, helping to revitalise the local economy.
Once in place, the temporary 20mph scheme will remain for a period of 18 months before being re-evaluated through feedback from the public and data supplied through traffic speed surveys. The evaluation results will be presented for appropriate committee approval of a permanent speed limit.
Councillor Ian Blake, Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Communities Committee said: “A 20mph speed limit for Stranraer will not only reduce vehicle speeds and accidents, but also make the roads and streets more attractive and safer for active travel and vulnerable user groups. Reduced speed limits are now recognised worldwide as a means to improve road safety and prevent collisions. Evidence has shown increasing support for 20mph speed limits from communities, and the Council has agreed the formal statutory process towards permanent implementation."
Councillor Jackie McCamon, Vice Chair of Communities Committee said: “We hope that the new 20mph limit in Stranraer will encourage more people to walk, cycle or wheel. 20mph areas help to reduce the number of road accidents and make people feel safer while going about their day-to-day journeys. The new 20mph speed limit aligns perfectly with the significant changes in the Highway Code to help pedestrians and cyclists, focusing on helping vulnerable road users by making active travel choices more attractive.”
Friday, 22 September 2023 12:53
The Chief Executives of Dumfries and Galloway Council and NHS Dumfries and Galloway have been appointed the role of White Ribbon Ambassadors for Dumfries and Galloway by White Ribbon Scotland to support the development of the Dumfries and Galloway White Ribbon Campaign (DGWRC).
The DGWRC is coordinated by the new local White Ribbon Steering Group with the aim of raising awareness of all forms of gender-based violence and violence against women and girls, their effect on women and girls – and society in general. The DGWRC will continue to encourage people to act against all forms of gender-based violence and to challenge the thought systems, norms, attitudes, values and beliefs that underpin forms of violence. This will be achieved by recruiting and training White Ribbon Speakers who will deliver awareness raising talks throughout the region.
People can take part in the DGWRC in different ways. You can wear a White Ribbon and sign the WR Pledge to never commit, condone, or remain silent about any form of violence against women or girls; you can become a WR Speaker and deliver WR Talks – training is provided free of charge; or you can become WR Champions and support the development of the campaign in the workplaces, clubs, or places of worship.
For more information about the D&GWRC, please email: WhiteRibbon@dumgal.gov.uk
Dawn Roberts, Chief Executive of Dumfries and Galloway Council said: “Violence against women and girls is a world pandemic affecting all parts of our society including Dumfries and Galloway. It is important that we continue to work together at service, community and personal levels to help stop this violence and abuse from happening. The Dumfries and Galloway White Ribbon Campaign gives us an opportunity to continue to work towards culture change by influencing the attitudes, values, and beliefs that encourage sexism and violence against women to thrive. I would like to take the opportunity to encourage Dumfries and Galloway Council staff to support the campaign and where possible, train as White Ribbon Speakers and help us raise awareness.
“Working together we can challenge violence against women and girls in Dumfries and Galloway.”
NHS Dumfries and Galloway Chief Executive Jeff Ace added: “Our ambition must be to completely stop violence against women and girls in Dumfries and Galloway. The Dumfries and Galloway White Ribbon initiative gives us the best chance of working across agencies to eliminate this violence, and the behaviours that can create it. We need to listen to the voices of women and girls and coordinate action to address their concerns.”
“In NHS D&G we have a largely female workforce and I know that colleagues will join me in supporting this campaign to make rapid and substantial improvement.”Rebekah Cheung, White Ribbon Scotland Project Coordinator said: “We’re really pleased with the commitment that Dumfries and Galloway have shown towards eliminating violence against women through the status project that they have undertaken with us. It’s also great to see how much senior buy-in the project has received, which is essential for effective and sustainable work to combat gender-based violence.”
Thursday, 21 September 2023 15:50
A major event aimed at fostering business partnerships and economic growth will take place at the Buccleuch Centre in Langholm on 3 October, with Dumfries and Galloway Council as a headline partner.
The Meet the Buyer South event presents an excellent opportunity for local businesses of any size to connect with potential buyers, supply chains, and business partners. With a diverse range of sectors represented, this event promises to be a hub for collaboration and networking. During the event, attendees can expect one-to-one networking opportunities, sparking informative and insightful discussions.
Representatives from the Scottish Government Procurement Directorate, who are keen to connect with local businesses and social enterprises, will be on hand to highlight steps they are taking to reduce perceived barriers to tendering. They will also emphasise the range of support available to businesses, including the free tender training being delivered by the Supplier Development Programme.
In addition to the headline partners, Dumfries and Galloway Council, Scottish Borders Council, and South of Scotland Enterprise, other confirmed exhibitors include buyers from supply chain contractors Balfour Beatty and BAM. These buyers are delivering projects in the region and wish to engage local businesses to fulfil their contract needs. Also joining Meet the Buyer South are Scotland Excel, Scottish Borders Housing Association, and Wheatley Group.
Suppliers will also be able to access procurement support through the Supplier Development Programme and Business Gateway on the day.
Dumfries and Galloway Council recognises the value of supporting local businesses and creating sustainable growth opportunities. By collaborating on the Meet the Buyer South event, the Council aims to facilitate constructive relationships between buyers and suppliers, fostering economic development and job creation in the region.
Cllr Ivor Hyslop, Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Finance, Procurement and Transformation Committee, said:
“What sets Meet the Buyer South apart is the emphasis on fostering meaningful connections. The event provides an array of opportunities for buyers and suppliers to engage in one-to-one networking opportunities. These meetings allow participants to explore potential partnerships, discuss specific business needs, and identify opportunities for collaboration. We look forward to seeing the continued success stories emerging from these interactions, establishing long-term, mutually beneficial relationships."
I encourage all industry professionals, whether sole traders, micro, small, and medium-sized businesses, supported businesses, and third sector organisations, to attend Meet the Buyer South 2023.”
Cllr Richard Marsh, Vice Chair, said:
“Meet the Buyer South continues to gain traction from year to year, and I am delighted to see how valuable it is to local businesses in finding new business opportunities. During the 2023 event, attendees will have the opportunity to gain valuable insights and form new business relationships as a result of the carefully curated agenda and excellent networking opportunities available.”
Wednesday, 20 September 2023 16:35
National Fitness Day 2023
National Fitness Day, which takes place today Wednesday 20 September, encourages the nation to celebrate the fun of fitness and physical activity across the UK. It also aims to raise awareness of being physically active for overall health and wellbeing.
Whilst many people love nothing more than heading out into the glorious hills of Dumfries and Galloway for a walk in the fresh air to stretch their legs and benefit from the quietness of the countryside to maintain their fitness, others prefer to tie up their rugby boots and head on to the field for 80 minutes of intense physical competition. How you chose to improve or maintain your fitness is entirely your choice, and here in Dumfries and Galloway we really are spoilt for choice with so many options, either from local community sports clubs and businesses, or from services delivered by Dumfries and Galloway Council.
Did you know that our Active Communities has 59 Walk leaders who delivered 18 weekly walks last year, that saw 5,614 people take part and that more than half of our schools take part in the Daily Mile UK programme? Walking, whilst it may seem simple in its form is one of the simplest forms of exercise is one of the most effective ways of improving physical fitness and clearly one of the most popular.
Whilst walking for health is hugely popular, we must celebrate the ever-increasing number of young people attending extra- curricular sessions delivered by Active Schools over the last year. A whopping 6,936 young people took part in everything from athletics to cricket, orienteering to dance.
The disability sports team also delivered 1,314 sessions last year and between DG One, Annan and Castle Douglas Swimming pools over 1,000 children took part in curricular swimming lessons and that Active Communities also delivered physical activity classes to 11,518 people! That’s a lot of opportunities to keep fit, happy and well right here in Dumfries and Galloway before you look at the countless number of committed community sport club and private businesses who go above and beyond to support residents improve their physical fitness.
Communities Committee Chair, Councillor Ian Blake said:
“National Fitness Day 2023 is a great opportunity to encourage people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities to recognise the importance of prioritising being active for our mental wellbeing as well as physical health. The smallest changes to your daily routine can have the biggest impact on your overall physical fitness. The work being carried out by the Active Communities team to support residents to improve physical fitness and reduce social isolation has been a pleasure to see develop over the last few years. The impact by those attending is often feedback to instructors, and hearing that confidence is increased and social isolation is decreased as a direct result of attending only goes to show that the impacts are truly profound. “
Communities Vice Chair, Councillor Jackie McCamon said:
“No matter your state of fitness, taking small steps to be more active more often will have huge benefits throughout your life – and that journey could start on National Fitness Day when you try something new. Dumfries and Galloway Council has the health and wellbeing of all residents at the heart of its priorities, and it is incredibly encouraging to see so many people engaging in the opportunities that services provide.”
For more information about improving your physical fitness in your community please visit - https://dgdoingmore.co.uk/active-communities.
Wednesday, 20 September 2023 12:05
Dumfries and Galloway Council is delighted to announce the winners of the 2023 Design Awards, recognising outstanding architectural and design achievements in the region. The prestigious awards aim to celebrate and honour remarkable projects that contribute to the enhancement of the built environment in Dumfries and Galloway.
This year’s awards are for development or building works completed between 1 April 2019 and 31 March 2023 (as development slowed down in the last few years due to lockdown restrictions, so the 2023 Design Awards cover four years).
The winners were selected from a strong pool of candidates, showcasing the diverse and innovative design talent within the area. The judging panel, comprised of esteemed professionals from the fields of architecture, planning, and design, carefully reviewed each submission and assessed them against various criteria, including sustainability, functionality, and aesthetic appeal.
Dumfries and Galloway Council is committed to promoting excellence in architecture and ensuring that our region continues to thrive with beautifully designed buildings and spaces. Dumfries and Galloway Council believe that good design should be accessible to all and that it can positively impact our quality of life. By recognising and celebrating exceptional architectural projects, we aim to inspire others to strive for excellence in their designs.
Dumfries and Galloway Council would like to extend congratulations to all the winners and express gratitude to all the participants for their exceptional submissions. These projects exemplify the commitment to design excellence and contribute significantly to the overall quality of life in Dumfries and Galloway.
The results for this year’s awards are attached.
Speaking on behalf of the independent judging panel, Mark Douglas said:
“The judging panel was delighted that this year’s Design Awards attracted 35 entrants from across the region and covered a variety of projects, large and small, including the reuse of existing buildings as well as new build projects. It was a daunting task to draw up a short list of projects to visit over two days, which given the geographic spread of the entries was limited to a total of 14 projects. We acknowledged the work that all entrants had undertaken in submitting their entries and enjoyed looking at all these, all of which had merits – there was definitely a strong theme of sustainability running through all the projects from both clients/end users and designers.
Architecture plays a vital role in shaping the character and identity of a place. It has the power to inspire, uplift, and create spaces that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional and sustainable. Dumfries and Galloway Council Design Awards serve as a platform to acknowledge the architects, designers, and construction professionals who have made significant contributions to our built environment across the region.It is hoped that the projects that have been given awards and commendations can be used as positive examples of good design to encourage future developments in the region.
As we come together to celebrate the Dumfries and Galloway Council Design Awards, let us appreciate the beauty and significance of architecture in our lives. May this event serve as a reminder of the impact that good design can have on our communities and inspire us to continue creating spaces that are both visually stunning and functionally efficient.”
Dumfries and Galloway Council's Economy and Resources Committee Chair, Cllr Ian Carruthers, said:
“I am delighted to be a part of the Dumfries and Galloway Council Design Awards 2023. This event provides us with an opportunity to celebrate and recognise the outstanding architectural achievements in our region. The awards not only showcase the talent and creativity of architects and professionals but also highlight the importance of good design in our communities.
I would like to extend my gratitude to all the architects, designers, and construction professionals who have taken part in this year’s Design Awards. Your dedication, passion, and innovation have truly transformed the architectural landscape of Dumfries and Galloway.”
Cllr David Inglis, Vice Chair of the Economy and Resources Committee, said:
“I congratulate all the winners and nominees of the Dumfries and Galloway Council Design Awards. The Design Awards are an opportunity to highlight the outstanding projects that have transformed our towns, villages, and landscapes. It’s a chance to celebrate the unique character and heritage of Dumfries and Galloway, while also embracing contemporary design and innovation.
I encourage everyone to explore the remarkable architectural achievements within Dumfries and Galloway. The Design Awards showcase some of the very best of what our region has to offer, and I am confident that they will continue to inspire and drive innovation in the years to come.”
Tuesday, 19 September 2023 14:27
Castle Douglas’ new Inclusive Play Park was officially opened on Friday 15 September at a small ceremony held at Carlingwark Park.
In 2018, Dumfries and Galloway Council prioritised £500,000 of investment to assist in the development of four inclusive play parks in Newton Stewart, Kirkconnel, Lockerbie and Castle Douglas. The main aim of an inclusive park is to provide facilities that are accessible to all – enabling all park users, through the design of the space, to play together safely.
The council provided funding of £125,000 towards the inclusive park and has supported Castle Douglas Development Forum (CDDF), who has been the principal partners in the project.
CDDF and Dumfries and Galloway Council worked together to carry out consultation with the community to establish the most suitable location for the park and what elements were needed to make it accessible to all. Information gathered during the consultation was used to produce the final project design.
Now that the play park has been completed, there will soon be a Changing Places Toilet located in Carlingwark Park. This is being purchased in conjunction with CDDF. This is currently being tendered for and we hope to have this installed in 2023. This, with plans to improve the path network within the park, will make a huge difference to the lives of people with enhanced needs.
Ian Blake, Chair of the Council’s Communities Committee said: “This project has been a great example of our Council and community partners working together to achieve a project which brings huge benefits to the local area and most importantly to our children and young people. The hard work and determination of CDDF is to be commended and the addition of fully accessible toilet facilities in Castle Douglas will make such a difference to the lives of many”.
Jackie McCamon, Vice Chair of Communities Committee said: “This is a great facility for Castle Douglas and has been a huge team effort. It is also fantastic that work is continuing to develop a Changing Places Toilet and improved path network to improve accessibility to this fantastic facility”.
Carolyn Yates, Chair of Castle Douglas Development Forum said: “It is wonderful to see this play park being used, particularly by children who require accessible equipment. Behind a project like this, there is a strong community and a strong partnership with the council. There are so many people to thank, in particular the volunteers who got this initiative started about five years ago, Tracy Walker, Holly Nelson and Gillian Warden, and the council officers who worked tirelessly to keep up the momentum –despite a pandemic intervening. Thanks also to the Allsopps for their sponsored activities, Wave Blues band for a fundraising gig and the people of the town who made private donations and who supported our fund raising events.
“We are grateful to the Holywood Trust for its generous donation that, in addition to supporting this playground, will also contribute to accessible pathways, fitness equipment and a Changing Places toilet in the park. Other organisations that have provided financial support include our local Co-op, Barfill Charitable Trust, The Galloway Association of Scotland, The Rotary Club of Castle Douglas and the town’s Common Good Fund. Without all this support and teamwork, projects like this that improve our town simply couldn’t happen.”
The Inclusive Play Park at Carlingwark Park has been installed by PROLUDIC (Scotland) LTD.
Tuesday, 19 September 2023 12:04
Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Roads Network Strategy and Ward Working teams are holding a series of community conversation events across the region over the next two months to consult on a new Regional Parking Strategy for Dumfries and Galloway.
Community conversations are an opportunity for residents, business and stakeholders to engage directly with the council, and to help shape and inform the new strategy. Each of the council’s twelve ward areas are covered through the consultation; if you are unable to come to one of those there is an online event, and an online public survey.
The new strategy will set out the vision for parking across the region and will address current issues the Council is facing with regards to parking control, management and enforcement.
The Chair of the council’s Communities Committee, Ian Blake said: “It is important to us that everyone who has an opinion to share on parking across our region can contribute to the development of our new strategy. Please attend one of the community conversation events and complete the public survey, and have your voice heard. Staff from the Roads Network Strategy and Ward Working teams will be at events to provide information, listen to your views, and to support you in completing the consultation survey.”
Jackie McCamon, Vice Chair of Communities committee, said: “This is a great opportunity for the residents of our region, and those who visit for work or leisure, to have their opinions heard and considered as the new strategy is developed. Nothing is decided at this point – your views can make a real difference to develop and influence parking controls, management and enforcement in the years to come.”
Community conversations start on 27 September at Castle Douglas Town Hall, with events in each of the council wards, ending on the 9 November at Council Chambers, Kirkcudbright. The online event will be held on Microsoft Teams on 14 November.
Information on how to register for the online session, and details of dates, times, and locations can be found here:www.dumgal.gov.uk/consultations
Friday, 15 September 2023 17:32There is a rich history and connection between New York and Dumfriesshire. Hugh Bryden of Roncadora Press and Maddy Rosenberg of CENTRAL BOOKING, have launched The Sandstone Steps Project, which will culminate in a series of events and collaborations between visual artists, musicians and poets from Dumfries and Galloway and New York, producing a prestigious editioned artist’s book, commissioned music, poetry pamphlets and artists print portfolios – along with exhibitions and performances on both sides of the Atlantic.
The exhibition, which is on show now at Kirkcudbright Galleries until 24 September, gives visitors a taster of what Roncadora Press and CENTRAL BOOKING are already producing as companies.
The exhibition then leads on to explain the Sandstone Steps wooden box that will be made as part of the project. In order to raise funds, they have created a Crowdfunder page, alongside selling books and artworks from Roncadora Press and CENTRAL BOOKING of which the sales will go to support the project.
The contributions that they raise will help towards publishing the poetry, recording the music, facilitating the production of artists’ prints, producing the wooden boxes, paying for travel and accommodation and for participating artists for the Sandstone Steps events programme in Dumfries & Galloway from April to September 2024.
Speaking on the Sandstone Steps Project and Exhibition, Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Communities Committee Ian Blake comments: “This project helps to show the unique transatlantic connections that Dumfries and Galloway has, and the project itself is an excellent way to celebrate the many forms of culture through the production of poetry, literature, art and music events that the region will enjoy.”
Vice Chair of Communities Committee Jackie McCamon added: “It’s great to see Kirkcudbright Galleries and the Museums Service supporting a project relating to local history with such fascinating historic roots to Annan’s Coreshill quarry, and through this project bringing it forward into the modern day and celebrating artists’ and makers living in Dumfries and Galloway and in New York in bringing cultural events to the area.”
Though the often-repeated story of local folklore that sandstone was transported as ballast from the port of Annan to form part of the base of the Statue of Liberty has been laid to rest, the reality is much more interesting, revealing important links between Dumfriesshire and New York.
With the expansion in the 1850s of the Cumbrian ports of Silloth, Maryport and Whitehaven, and the development subsequently of the railway links, large amounts of sandstone were transported from Annan’s Corsehill quarry to New York. Records show that during that period, Corsehill quarry alone shipped an average of 250 tons per week to New York.
Corsehill sandstone was particularly prized, as when first quarried it is soft and was found to be easily carved. But upon exposure to the air, it hardens slowly and feels like polished wood when rubbed down. This New Red Triassic stone was used for fine details in the brownstones in New York City and then extensively in the construction of the New York State Capitol in Albany, started in 1868 and completed in 1896.
The Million Dollar Staircase.
In Albany, the state capitol of New York, the grand Great Western Staircase, also known as the Million Dollar Staircase due to its eventual cost, was begun. Designed by Henry Hobson Richardson and built by Isaac Perry, the staircase contains 444 steps and reaches a height of 119 feet high. It is renowned as an outstanding example of architectural stone carving excellence.
Made of sandstone from Corsehill, the massive staircase is most notably known for the intricate carvings that decorate the stairs. Over 500 stone cutters and carvers were employed at various times. Many had mastered their trade here in Scotland, stone carvers from Lochmaben Creca and Brydekirk, all in the Corsehill area worked there. Using only ladders and scaffolding, often in very uncomfortable positions, these stone artists spent years, at a salary of five dollars a day, sculpting some of the finest stonework found anywhere in the world. Their main task was carving portraits of various prominent people into the stone, as ordered by chief architect Isaac Perry. Among the 77 famous faces beautifully carved are George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Walt Whitman and Susan B. Anthony.
With the famous Americans completed, Perry decided to allow his elite group of carvers to sculpt the faces of friends, relatives and people they knew. These are referred to as the Capitol’s Unknowns and comprise over 400 portraits.
Surrounded by United States notables, we find these Dumfriesshire people inspiring and celebrate them, along with the artisans who carved them and the journeys that brought them from small rural Dumfriesshire villages across the Atlantic.
Friday, 15 September 2023 15:42On Thursday 14 September, youth and adult volunteers who dedicated their time to Youth Beatz 2023 came together for the annual Youth Beatz Volunteer Celebration. The event was held as a thank you for the efforts and dedication of all those involved.
Youth Beatz was held over the weekend of Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 July, at Park Farm Showfield in Dumfries. The event weekend was a huge success, with the festival continuing to pride itself on providing high quality volunteering opportunities to both young people and adults, some of whom attended the Celebration Event.
Councillor Ian Blake, Chair of Communities Committee said: “Youth Beatz provides those who kindly choose to volunteer their time with many opportunities to develop new skills, to broaden their horizons, and to get valuable experience within the events industry. Our Council is incredibly proud to celebrate the achievements of all of those who volunteered their time at Youth Beatz 2023.”
This year, the festival was incredibly thankful to have 186 young and adult volunteers, who worked on a variety of aspects of the event, from staff welfare to the Youth Work Tent, backstage and production, and the box office to name a few. For the duration of the build and de-rig, 12 young Duke of Edinburgh’s Award participants from across Dumfries and Galloway and the rest of Scotland came along to undertake their Gold Residential section, working on several elements of the event alongside event staff.
The Toon also saw many volunteers help with the design and delivery of the immersive youth drama production which delivers powerful messages of youth information on a variety of topics and issues that affect young people in their day to day lives. A regional youth events group set up in Newton Stewart and Moffat were responsible for designing certain aspects of the festival, including social media content, parts of the Fringe Festival and working alongside event staff in the areas they were responsible for that involved young people. The group were also volunteering in different areas across the event weekend. Local environmental organisation DG Eco Warriors were also on hand for the entire event weekend to keep Park Farm clean, dedicating a large number of volunteers who carried out litter picking.
Councillor Jackie McCamon, Vice Chair of Communities Committee said: “Our Council truly appreciates the hard work and dedication of all volunteers involved with Youth Beatz. Thousands of volunteer hours were tallied up in the lead up to the festival and over the event weekend, further emphasising the point that Scotland’s largest free youth music event would not be possible without all our volunteers.”
Max Heughan, young volunteer and member of the Newton Stewart Events Group said: “I really enjoyed volunteering at Youth Beatz 2023. Through my role I got to work on designing parts of the festival in the lead up, and on the event weekend I worked on gathering social media content, and even got to interview Sunday headliner Callum Beattie which was amazing. If anyone is thinking about volunteering next year, my advice would definitely be to go for it!”
Friday, 15 September 2023 15:23We are delighted to announce that the DG Youth Awards are back for 2023. This year the annual awards evening will once again take place at Easterbrook Hall, Dumfries on Thursday 23 November and will focus on celebrating the amazing achievements of young people aged 12–25 in Dumfries and Galloway.
Finlay Anderson, Chairperson of Dumfries and Galloway Youth Council said: “It is great to see that Dumfries and Galloway Youth Awards are back once again for 2023. The awards are a significant event for young people across the region and has built up a strong reputation for celebrating the personalities, talents and achievements of our young people. I look forward to hearing about the inspiring stories of young people from across Dumfries and Galloway this year.”
Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Communities Committee, Councillor Ian Blake said: “Each year, the DG Youth Awards confirm the dedication, commitment, and determination from young people the length and breadth of our region who are doing incredible things to improve the lives of their peers within their local communities and across Dumfries and Galloway. Our Council is incredibly proud to play a part in showcasing how great the young people of our region are.”
Nominations open today and if you know a young person, youth worker or organisation in Dumfries and Galloway who you think is deserving of recognition, you can submit a nomination from now until the closing date of Monday 23 October.
The categories for this year’s main awards are:
2. Culture, Arts and Entertainment
3. Young Volunteer
4. Young Change Maker
5. Unsung Hero
7. Group of the Year
8. Youth Worker of the Year (Paid)
9. Youth Worker of the Year (Voluntary)
10. Young Enterprise and Business Award
11. Dumfries and Galloway Young Person of the Year
More information on each of the awards and how to nominate can be found at: www.dgyouthawards.com
Vice Chair of Communities Committee, Councillor Jackie McCamon said: “I am truly delighted that our annual Youth Awards event is back again this year. It provides us with an opportunity to thank the organisations, youth leaders and youth workers who are constantly going above and beyond to support our region’s young people and communities, it is immensely important that we acknowledge and celebrate this. Please nominate today and give them the recognition they deserve!”
The DG Youth Awards are sponsored by The Crichton Trust and fully funded by 10,000 Voices In Action and the National Lottery.
Friday, 15 September 2023 11:21
The Education and Learning Committee of Dumfries & Galloway Council met on 14 September, and agreed a report on the Education Annual Report and Improvement Plan.
The report highlights many positives of how the service has performed over the reporting period (2022/23). Some of those highlights include:
- Children and young people have good experiences in our schools and early years establishments and have good outcomes from their learning.
- Through ongoing reflection and self-evaluation at every level within the system, we know there are areas that can be improved within and across our settings. The improvement agenda is underpinned by an expectation that all establishments have a systematic approach to quality assurance and moderation, data analysis, evaluating and improving the quality of learning experiences and promoting stakeholder involvement as key strategies in improving learning, raising attainment, and narrowing the poverty related attainment gap.
- During this reporting period, Schools and Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) settings have worked to address, tackle, and find solutions for young learners who missed out on vital Early Years experiences during the pandemic, those who have and continue to face trauma and barriers to learning in their lives and children and young people who are impacted by poverty.
Within the school environment itself, many initiatives and projects have been established and continue to be successful for our children and young people, including:
- The Counselling in Schools project was set up by an implementation team from Educational Psychology and Youth Work and continues to be overseen by both services.
- Educational Psychology Service has offered a telephone consultation service for parents of children not already known to the service. 163 consultations have taken place since 2021, 84 of these in session 22/23.
- The number of places offered for Instrumental Music rose from 800 pupils in 2021/22 session to 1,774 in 2022/23.
- Group music making resumed this session with D&G Wind Band, Youth Orchestra, Youth Jazz Band, Regional Youth Choir, Open Mic sessions, Percussion Ensembles and many more groups and bands supported and led by IMS instructors in schools.
Members of the Education and Learning Committee were also given data as part of the report on HMIE inspection statistics, with 19 school and nursery inspections taking place, 17 of which have had the results published to date.
Chair of Education and Learning Committee, Cllr Richard Brodie welcomed the report. He said:
“This is a very comprehensive report that has an abundance of positives contained within it. It provides a great summary of the sheer size of the directorate, and the number of services that the committee is responsible for overseeing. It’s an open and transparent report that provides information on not only on what has gone well, but also on streams that we need to, and will, improve in.”
Vice Chair of the Committee, Cllr Maureen Johnstone commented:
“The report and improvement plan gives us a real flavour of how the Covid-19 pandemic really affected our learners and staff. We continue to recover from this, both in terms of offers, opportunities and results. I’d like to thank the staff within the entire directorate for their continuous work in doing the very best they can, to ensure our Council continues to achieve positive outcomes for our children and young people across D&G.”
Wednesday, 13 September 2023 16:02
A four-day event is taking place this weekend in Dumfries to celebrate the connections between our region and Norway, established during World War Two. Organised by the ‘Scottish Norwegian Connection’ (SNC)there will be around 40 visitors from Norway along with Scottish people who have connections with Norwegians. King Harald V of Norway has appointed Captain Pål Hope, Norwegian Defence Attaché to the UK, and Honorary Norwegian Consul General, Prof. Julian Jones, as his representatives for the visit.
There are three public events taking place, and local people are encouraged to come along and support the occasions – as well as enjoying the music and spectacle.
On Friday 15 September at 10am at the Midsteeple, the Norwegian flag will be raised, accompanied by the signing of the Norwegian and British national anthems. The Council Convener, Councillor Malcolm Johnstone, and Depute Lord-Lieutenant of Dumfries, John Henderson, will be participating.
On Saturday 16 September at 4.30pm at the Whitesands beside Devorgilla Bridge, there will be the unveiling of the ‘Norwegian Stone of Friendship’ by Captain Pål Hope, Norwegian Defence Attaché to UK. This will begin with a parade, starting at the Robert Burns Centre, crossing Devorgilla Bridge by the members of the Scottish Norwegian Association led by the Buccleuch and Queensberry Pipe Band. Many of the Norwegian representatives will be in national costume. The Lord-Lieutenant of Dumfries, Fiona Armstrong and the Provost of Dumfries, Maureen Johnstone, will be participating.
On Sunday 17 September, there is a special commemorative service at St Michael’s and South Church at 11.00am, led by Rev Bill Hogg and supported by two Norwegian Deacons. The Lord-Lieutenant Fiona Armstrong will also be participating.
Dumfries and Galloway Council will then host a private lunch for the visitors at the Cairndale Hotel, hosted by the Depute Convener Councillor Gail Macgregor. Following this, at Troqueer Cemetery at 3.00pm, the Lord-Lieutenant of Dumfries Fiona Armstrong, the Depute Convener Councillor Gail Macgregor and Provost of Dumfries Councillor Maureen Johnstone and SNC representatives will lay wreaths during a Service of Remembrance to the Norwegians who lost their lives while stationed in the Dumfries area. Norwegian members of the SNC will then lay wreaths on the 13 war graves and the nearby grave of Captain Stensones. Members of the Royal British Legion will be in attendance.
On Monday 18 September, the SNC party is visiting Duncow Primary School, Newlands House, Maxwellton House, Maxwellton Chapel, Dumfries Museum and Drumlanrig Castle. All of these places have a strong Norwegian connection, and are sure to be of interest to locals and visitors alike.
Councillor Malcolm Johnstone, Convener of Dumfries and Galloway Council said: “Dumfries and Galloway Council is privileged to support this friendship with the Norwegians, and it is with great pleasure that we are contributing to this weekend of celebrations that will undoubtedly cement our links further. We are delighted to welcome especially King Harald’s representatives and the other Norwegians who have made the journey to our region.”
Councillor Gail MacGregor, Depute Convener added: “I am immensely proud of the international links that our region has, and the significant contribution we have made in supporting others. It is testament to the families and friends involved that this link has continued for 83 years and while there will be time to reflect and remember why it was created, I am sure it will be a positive and happy weekend.”
Councillor Maureen Johnstone, Provost of Dumfries said: “I am very conscious of the important role that the townspeople of Dumfries and beyond played during WWII in welcoming and helping the Norwegian Army establish a base here – and that the late King Olav of Norway was a Freeman of our Burgh. The wonderful stone at the Whitesands will serve as a permanent reminder of our friendship and we are most grateful to the Scottish Norwegian Connection for their gift.”
Aslak Wahl, Chairman of SNC added: “Our Scottish representatives, Beverley and Michael Thom of Dumfries, have organised a very full and interesting weekend of events in and around Dumfries. They have both worked closely with Dumfries and Galloway Council to co-ordinate the public events – especially all the detail around placing the ‘Stone of Friendship’ in a suitable position.”
Beverley Thom, Organiser of the Norwegian Visit said: “This is a very important and emotive occasion for our community. Who could have thought that the simple, basic, acts of friendship and kindness, shown by our predecessors, could have led to such long lasting relationships through the generations? To have the town and its people recognised, and honoured, for doing what comes naturally, is praise indeed. My hope is that these links continue and grow as we move forward.”
Royal British Legion Scotland (Legion Scotland) War Memorial Competition 2023 Certificates Presented
Wednesday, 13 September 2023 12:52
War Memorials are an important part of the fabric of communities across Scotland – nearly every village, town, or city has a memorial. Our War Memorials remain a highly visible and poignant means of remembering the sacrifices made by so many in defence of our country from the First World War, as well as the many other conflicts since then.
The annual Legion Scotland Best Kept War Memorial Competition recognises the great work that is carried out to maintain the nation’s war memorials. It also provides an opportunity to showcase our region’s support for our Armed Forces and Veteran and shows enormous respect in memory of all those brave men and women whose names are listed on them.
Several War Memorials from our region received awards this year, and this years’ ‘Champion of Champions’ was awarded to Kirkpatrick Fleming Parish War Memorial.
In his capacity as the RBLS Area Secretary for Glasgow, Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway, Archie Dryburgh MBE will present certificates to local volunteers as follows. Ward Elected Members have been notified and members of the public are also welcome to attend.
Monday, 18 September 2023
Lochmaben War Memorial
Lochmaben War Memorial was awarded Highly Commended in the National All Category (Glasgow. Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway) RBLS Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023.
Kirkpatrick Fleming Parish (Obelisk) War Memorial
Kirkpatrick Fleming Parish (Obelisk) War Memorial was announced as the Winner of the National All Category (Glasgow, Ayrshire, and Dumfries and Galloway Area) of the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023. Furthermore, this years’ Champion of Champions was drawn from the winners of each of the categories with the overall winner also being Kirkpatrick Fleming Parish (Obelisk) War Memorial.
Gretna Parish War Memorial
Gretna Parish War Memorial was awarded Very Highly Commended in the National All Category (Glasgow, Ayrshire, and Dumfries and Galloway Area) of the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023.
Wednesday, 20 September 2023
Dalbeattie War Memorial
Dalbeattie War Memorial was the Winner of the Small Community with Gardens Category (Glasgow, Ayrshire, and Dumfries and Galloway Area) of the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023.
Maxwelltown War Memorial
Dumfries and Maxwelltown War Memorial was awarded Commended in the Large Community with Gardens Category (Glasgow, Ayrshire, and Dumfries and Galloway Area) of the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023.
Closeburn War Memorial
Closeburn War Memorial was Highly Commended in the National All Category (Glasgow, Ayrshire, and Dumfries and Galloway Area) of the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023.
Sanquhar War Memorial
Closeburn War Memorial was Highly Commended in the National All Category (Glasgow, Ayrshire, and Dumfries and Galloway Area) of the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023.
Kirkconnel War Memorial
Kirkconnel War Memorial was awarded Commended in the National All Category (Glasgow, Ayrshire, and Dumfries and Galloway Area) of the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) Best Kept War Memorial Competition 2023.
Councillor Malcolm Johnstone, Convener of Dumfries and Galloway Council said: “The annual RBLS Best Kept War Memorial competition is a very prominent way to highlight the significance of our nation’s Armed Forces. They remain a highly visible reminder of the sacrifices that were made by so many brave men and women from our region to protect us and our nation. The presentation of these awards provides an opportunity for our region to show our continuing support for our Veterans and Armed Forces personnel.”
Councillor Gail Macgregor, Depute Convener of Dumfries and Galloway Council said: “War Memorials are a significant part of the fabric of communities across our region. The annual RBLS Best Kept War Memorial competition recognises the great pride and work that is carried out by so many communities to maintain these places of Remembrance. Congratulations to all those that took part in this years’ competition, and a very special well done to Kirkpatrick Fleming for scooping this years’ Champion of Champions’ award. Our volunteers do so much across our region, we are indebted to them for all their hard work.”
Archie Dryburgh, MBE commented: “The RBLS Best Kept War Memorial competition provides an opportunity for different age groups and organisations to come together to enhance and maintain what is a very important asset in towns and villages across the Glasgow, Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway Area.
“All those that took part in the competition this year have clearly demonstrated what can be achieved by doing so. We are looking forward to more nominations from communities across the Area in next year's competition. Dumfries and Galloway always have some excellent War Memorials in the annual competition, which is a true reflection of the significance of these sites to our region.”
Tuesday, 12 September 2023 13:28
Dumfries and Galloway Council has today (Tuesday 12 September) updated its dedicated reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) webpage after developments at three schools.
At in Dumfries, RAAC panels have been identified within the building. These have been surveyed. Some panels were found to be cracked. The recommendation is that immediate work is undertaken to install further support to a small number of these panels over a small area within the school.
Due to the council being able to secure in-demand contractors ahead of schedule, work on identified RAAC panelling will now begin tomorrow (Wednesday 13 September), brought forward from the October break.
This work will take place during school hours;
At Carrutherstown Primary School, Nithsdale, due to the council being able to secure in-demand contractors, work will now take place next month during the two-week October break while the school is closed.
And in Gatehouse Primary School in Gatehouse of Fleet, the council’s structural engineers have now undertaken more inspections and confirmed that the school is safe for pupils and staff. The council awaits further detailed guidance from its structural engineers.
Four schools have now been identified as having RAAC panels in Dumfries and Galloway:
- Laurieknowe Primary School, Dumfries
- Carrutherstown Primary School, Nithsdale
- Dumfries Academy, Dumfries
- Gatehouse Primary School, Gatehouse of Fleet
No other schools operated by Dumfries and Galloway Council have RAAC and there are no plans to close any affected schools while work takes place.
The council is regularly updating parents, carers and staff at each affected school and all the council’s actions are guided by advice from its expert structural engineers.
In addition, survey work is being undertaken across the rest of the council estate to investigate and identify any further buildings that may have these panels fitted – to which the same structural engineering inspection and reporting regime will be applied.
Dumfries and Galloway Council Leader Cllr Gail Macgregor said: “Our council is taking a proactive approach to this developing situation. In all cases we are guided by the advice of our expert structural engineers as we work to tackle the incidence of RAAC panels in our schools as quickly as we can while minimising disruption to pupils, parents and staff.”
Depute Leader Cllr Malcolm Johnstone said: “The safety of the children and education colleagues who use our schools is our paramount concern and every decision our officers make, they do so through this lens.”
Friday, 08 September 2023 10:51The Council’s Community Safety Team is visiting 20 communities across Dumfries and Galloway in the coming weeks to discuss local anti-social behaviour issues in the community.
Following similar events in other communities, the team has heard firsthand where problem areas are. As a result, your Community Safety Officers have then been able to target their foot patrols to help deter and detect anti-social behaviour and fine those offending.
Chair of Communities Committee, Councillor Ian Blake said: “Previous community safety engagement events generated useful information to help the team better target their time and focus on key areas of our region to detect and deter anti-social behaviour, in order to make our residents feel safer. These coming events will give members of the public the opportunity to tell our Community Safety Team about matters and areas of concern in their own area, and how they’d like us to deploy resources to deal with various issues”.
Jackie McCamon, Vice Chair of the committee, added: “We receive a lot of feedback on what is important to the communities across our region. Some of this relates to dog fouling, littering and abandoned vehicles, among other things. Our Community Safety Team needs your input to continue to make a difference in your community so if you can, please visit an event near you and talk to our team”.
Two Community Safety Officers will be present at each event, please look out for them at the Community Safety display trailer. The location, date and time for the next 20 engagement events are as follows:
LOCATION & TIME
LOCATION & TIME
LOCATION & TIME
1000hrs – 1230hrs
1315hrs – 1415hrs
1500hrs – 1600hrs
1000hrs – 1400hrs
1430hrs – 1600hrs
Tesco Car Park
Cuckoo Bridge, Dumfries
1000hrs – 1300hrs
1330hrs – 1430hrs
1500hrs – 1600hrs
1000hrs – 1300hrs
Near the School
1330hrs – 1430hrs
1500hrs – 1600hrs
1000hrs – 1300hrs
Near Victoria Hall
1330hrs – 1430hrs
1500hrs – 1600hrs
1000hrs – 1300hrs
1330hrs – 1430hrs
1500hrs – 1600hrs
1000hrs – 1130hrs
1230hrs – 1400hrs
1430hrs – 1600hrs
The Council’s Community Safety Team consists of 8 patrol staff, based regionwide and focusses on the detection, deterrence and public awareness of anti-social behaviour such as littering, dog fouling and fly tipping. The team also dispose of discarded needles, collect stray dogs, investigate and remove abandoned vehicles and deal with anti-social behaviour and neighbour disputes in communities regionwide.
Patrols are out from 8am to 5.30pm Monday to Thursday and 11.30am to 9pm Friday to Saturday with the aim of deterring antisocial behaviour and detecting and ultimately fining those offending. They also offer a mediation service to assist neighbours to resolve disputes: https://www.dumgal.gov.uk/article/15208/Mediation-service
You can find out more about the Community Safety Team here: http://www.dumgal.gov.uk/article/15202/Community-Safety-Team
Thursday, 07 September 2023 15:46A local voluntary group from Wigtownshire has received national recognition for their local work to support learning and skills development within their local community. ‘Learners Together’ have won the Group Award at the national Adult Learners’ Week Awards Ceremony, organised through Scotland’s Learning Partnership.
Formed in 2018, the group have gone from strength to strength over the last few years supported by the Council’s Lifelong Learning Team and have attracted over £98,000 of external funding to provide a range of courses and learning opportunities such as driving theory, arts & crafts, cookery, family events, mental health and wellbeing support, funding a community garden project and many more!
Three Committee members have written books and poems and had them published and have now been invited to the Wigtown Book Festival to talk about their experiences and learning.
During COVID, the group bought “isolation packs” and helped deliver them within their local community to help support those who were struggling.
The award is testament to the members of the group who have overcome their own personal challenges and barriers in order provide a vital service to their community.
Chair of the Council’s Communities Committee, Councillor Ian Blake, enthused: “This is a fantastic achievement for the group and demonstrates the important impact that volunteering and Lifelong Learning can have on individuals and communities”.
Vice Chair of the Committee, Councillor Jackie McCamon, highlighted: “We are delighted that Learners Together have been recognised at a national level for the important work they are doing in our local community, and we wish them continued success in the future”.
Wednesday, 06 September 2023 15:29
Dumfries and Galloway Council has updated its dedicated reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) webpage.
It had previously (Friday 1 September) announced that three of the region’s schools were affected by RAAC with the council awaiting structural-engineer inspection reports on two further schools.
An update from the structural engineers received yesterday (Tuesday 5 September) found that Kirkcudbright Academy does not have RAAC, but Gatehouse Primary School in Gatehouse of Fleet does. Parents, carers and staff have been informed.
Four schools have now been identified as having RAAC panels in Dumfries and Galloway:
- Laurieknowe Primary School, Dumfries
- Carrutherstown Primary School, Nithsdale
- Dumfries Academy, Dumfries
- Gatehouse Primary School, Gatehouse of Fleet
In addition – as the result of a weekly inspection regime brought in by the council at the school – it has closed two offices at Laurieknowe Primary School until remedial work is undertaken. No classrooms are affected. Parents, carers and staff have been informed.
Dumfries and Galloway Council Leader Cllr Gail MacGregor said: “The safety of the children and education colleagues who use these properties is our paramount concern and we will not hesitate to take all necessary measures to ensure this.
“We have been updating parents, carers and staff and other key groups regularly over the last few days on what is a developing situation, and will continue to do so. I would urge everyone to check our dedicated webpage for latest updates: https:dumgal.gov.uk/raac-schools
“In terms of assurance, on the advice of our structural engineers, an enhanced inspection regime has been adopted for all four affected schools. In addition, our buildings have recently been subject to condition surveys and ongoing regular checks are made as part of the Lead Occupier inspections by the Council's clerk of works team. These will continue.
“Survey work is also being undertaken across the rest of our council estate to investigate and identify any further buildings that may have these panels fitted – to which the same structural engineering inspection and reporting regime will be applied.
“We will continue to be guided by the advice of our expert structural engineers.”
Depute Leader Malcolm Johnstone said: “If you are looking for more specific information about the four affected schools or what measures the council has and is taking on RAAC panels, there is plenty more detail on our website.
“In the meantime, we would like to reassure all parents, carers and our education staff that we are working hard with our structural engineers to address this top-priority issue.”
Wednesday, 06 September 2023 13:34The tents are packed away for another year as the Youth Work Service’s ‘Camp DG’ programme draws to a close after a hugely successful Summer.
Returning for its third year, with special thanks to Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Summer of Play Fund, the popular ‘Camp DG’ saw hundreds of young people from across the region take part in a trio of accredited awards and community projects, before embarking on the big Camp Out.
The programme, aimed at 12 – 16-year-olds, was delivered in communities across the region and offered free fun activities, including the opportunity to participate in accredited awards such as High 5, Heritage Hero, The Art Award and the Climate Action Challenge.
The camp week, at St Ann’s Scout Campsite near Moffat, brought young people together for an action-packed camping experience that involved climate and environment challenges, arts & crafts, teambuilding games, silent discos and, of course, sleepless nights!
Running alongside Camp DG, ‘Summer Hangouts’ provided a safe space for young people to spend time with friends in the evenings, access food and free activities, such as cooking classes, sports activities, arts & crafts and music, and ran six nights per week throughout the holidays.
Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Communities Committee, Councillor Ian Blake said: “Camp DG and the activities on offer this summer has given young people access to fun, positive opportunities to develop important life skills and confidence. I was fortunate enough to spend a day at Camp DG, and it was great to see so many young people running around, having fun and unwinding after a hard year at school.”
Councillor Jackie McCamon, Vice Chair of Communities Committee added: “We would like to say a massive thank you to all the Young Leaders who gave up their time during the holidays to help deliver the summer programme. It is vitally important that young people have a role model they can learn from and someone to talk to, as well as somewhere to go and things to do outside of school.”
The new Youth Work Autumn/Winter programmes have already started, and will continue to offer an extensive range of groups, drop-in’s and events through evenings and weekends right across the region.
You can find our programmes by visiting the Youth Work website at https://youthwork.dumgal.gov.uk/ or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @YouthworkDG
Friday, 01 September 2023 14:38Dumfries and Galloway Youth Council (DGYC) and Scottish Youth Parliament (SYP) Elections are now OPEN for young people to register their interest in standing as a candidate!The Youth Council is a youth-led organisation made up of 35 young people from across our region and it is their role to represent the voices of young people on a local, regional, and national level to decision makers. The Youth Council was established in 2019 and this is the third full-scale elections cycle.There are three types of representatives on the Youth Council:
Any young person in S1 or above can become a Ward or Nominated Youth Council Member. Members of the Scottish Youth Parliament must be aged 14+ at the time of the elections in November 2023. The sign-up link is below:https://linktr.ee/DGYouthCouncilBeing a member of the Dumfries and Galloway Youth Council is an incredible opportunity for young people who are interested in being instrumental in making sure that young people’s voices are represented and heard in decision making. Serving a two-year term, DGYC members advocate on behalf of their peers. As well as ensuring that these voices are heard, it is an invaluable experience which can assist the development of a young person’s confidence, communication, and leadership skills.The current membership has benefited from regular meetings and support, training days residentials and representing young people in various guises. Members of Dumfries and Galloway Youth Council have been key players creating opportunities for young people across the region.Information and training sessions will be available for young people to attend upon registering their interest as will assistance to run their campaign should they decide to become a candidate.Councillor Ian Blake, Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Communities Committee said: “I would encourage any young person within the age range to put themselves forward to become part of Dumfries and Galloway’s next regional Youth Council. Our Council is in full support of the Youth Council and are impressed with their vision and dedication so far ensuring our region is a better place for young people to live, learn and work. We are committed to collaborating with the Youth Council and are excited to see how it further develops during this next term.”Councillor Jackie McCamon, Vice-Chair of Communities Committee added: “The Youth Council have achieved so much since being established in 2019 and as a Council, we are excited to launch the third full-scale elections process for young people. Elected Members want to hear from young people in our local communities and the Youth Council provides a unique link to young people and an opportunity to listen and act upon what young people have to say.”Dumfries and Galloway Youth Council’s Chair and Vice-Chair, Finlay Anderson, MSYP for Galloway and West Dumfries and Cloe Allison, Ward Youth Councillor for Stranraer and the Rhins said; “The Youth Council isn’t just about what you as a Member can do for young people, it’s also about what you can get out of being involved in a youth-led organisation – we have both had amazing opportunities as individuals and part of the organisation that we wouldn’t have had the chance to do had we not decided to become a candidate at the last elections sign up! If you think it’s important for young people to be included when decisions are made that affect us, then sign up today!”.
- Ward Youth Councillors: this role is about representing the views of young people who live, work or study in each Ward area to local decision makers. There are two Ward Youth Councillors for each of the region’s 12 Ward areas.
- Nominated Youth Councillors: this role is about representing the views of young people who have minority identities from across our region to local decision makers – there’s a Nominated Youth Councillor role for Young Carers, Care Experienced Young People, Young People with Additional Support Needs and Disabilities, Ethnic Minority Young People, Young People from Gypsy Traveller communities, Young Parents and LGBT young people.
- Members of the Scottish Youth Parliament: this role is about representing the views of young people to national decision makers through the Scottish Youth Parliament. There are four seats available across the region broken into two for each constituency Galloway and west Dumfries and Dumfriesshire.