Huge new 78-acre park takes shape in Winchburgh

A huge new park, almost twice the size of Green Park in London, is starting to take shape in Winchburgh.

Auldcathie Park will provide a large area of green space to the west of the new Bellway housing development, and surrounding a planned new school. The first phase of the park is scheduled to open in spring 2021.

An estimated 31,000 trees will be planted, providing a number of woodland walks as well as extensive areas of new wildlife habitat. The first 420 trees, donated by the local Winchburgh Community Growing Group through the Woodland Trust, will be planted this winter. A café with public toilets will be located in the centre of the park, with community growing areas and orchards nearby. Other areas planned include sensory play and large natural play areas, an enclosed dog park, a 2.5-kilometre loop of accessible paths, as well as mountain bike and fitness trails.

John Hamilton, CEO, Winchburgh Developments Limited stated to the media in August, “The new Auldcathie District Park is an integral part of the Winchburgh masterplan, spanning an impressive 78 acres and providing the local Winchburgh community and the wider a region with a new green space to come and enjoy. The response from the Winchburgh community to this project has been fantastic, and we’ve very much valued their ideas and design input which we’ve incorporated into the final plan for the park.”


West Lothian Council seeks feedback on its Gaelic Language Plan

West Lothian Council has prepared a draft Gaelic Language Plan and is seeking the views of local people. The draft plan aims to enhance the status of Gaelic, promote the learning of Gaelic and also encourage its use locally.

West Lothian Council has a statutory duty to implement a Gaelic Language Plan, similar to all other council areas within Scotland, within the framework of the national Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005.

The draft Gaelic Language Plan sets out how the council will use Gaelic in the operation of its functions, how the council will enable the use of Gaelic when communicating with the public, and how they will promote and develop Gaelic.

According to a survey of the council’s own 947 workforce in April this year, 9.8% spoke Gaelic to varying degrees of fluency, and the Plan includes proposals to include learning opportunities for the 437 staff members who expressed an interest in learning the language. The Plan also includes proposals for adult learners as well as plans to increase the visibility of the Gaelic language throughout West Lothian such as in road signage.

Graham Hope, Chief Executive of West Lothian Council, stated, ”This is an opportunity to positively and incrementally grow the use of the language in West Lothian in a way that is proportionate. The council will develop an approach which supports and responds positively to this heritage and demographic.
This will include proposals to enhance the status of Gaelic across the area and promote the acquisition and learning of the language as well as encourage its increased use.”

The consultation is open until 20 November