Blackhall Community Trust Public Consultation on exciting site options for Ravelston Park Pavilion in Ravelston Park!
Please participate in our community consultation on possible site options for meeting our community’s needs (identified through public consultation in 2016/17) for more early years places and a community hub in Ravelston Park Pavilion (Blackhall Nursery), Ravelston Park.
We had a lively and well-attended AGM on 6 March with a helpful presentation from architect Malcolm Fraser on the site options and lots of questions from residents. Many residents also completed our consultation questionnaire at Blackhall Library where the options were on display from 26 February to 10 March. There are five options:
- Option 1 (extension to current building; however, this does not provide space for a community hub);
- Option 2 (new build on current site; requires a decant for Blackhall Nursery);
- Option 3 (east end of park beside wild flower garden);
- Option 4 (in front of existing building);
- Option 5 (on playpark; relocate playpark to existing Ravelston Park Pavilion site).
You can view the five options and share your views in the following ways:
This 942 MF Blackhall outline sketches D FINAL has measurements of the different internal spaces which may help to inform your views.
Please bear in mind that:
- We need enough space to improve Blackhall Nursery and to create a community hub to meet identified community needs
- We want to minimise impact on Ravelston Park and on Ravelston Park users
- We want to minimise impact on neighbours
- These are only outline ideas to sift possible locations and are entirely subject to the community’s response to these ideas and to planning permission and funding.
We were recently awarded a grant by the Scottish Land Fund of just over £15,000 to produce a business plan and a feasibility study of design options for Ravelston Park Pavilion. This is part of exploring a possible transfer of ownership (or a long lease) of Ravelston Park Pavilion from the City of Edinburgh Council to Blackhall Community Trust, on behalf of the Blackhall community. After a competitive tendering process, we awarded contracts to Caskie & Co (business planning) and Malcolm Fraser Architects (design options). Malcolm’s brief is to create a small community hub and a fit-for-purpose space for Blackhall Nursery, a community-run charity.
We are delighted to share with you Malcolm Fraser’s preliminary site options and to seek your feedback.
Blackhall Community Trust: Join our email/mail list or follow us on Facebook BlackhallCT or Twitter @BlackhallCT
Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Write to us: c/o Blackhall Nursery, Ravelston Park Pavilion, Craigcrook Rd Edinburgh EH4 3RU.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Why are there five options?
A: We wanted to look at all possible sites within Ravelston Park. Local residents need to consider whether they would like a community hub. If so, new build (Options 2, 3, 4 or 5) is the only way forward. However, we have been advised by the City of Edinburgh Council and the Scottish Land Fund that we would have a stronger case for a community asset transfer if any proposed site had a ‘relationship’ with the existing Ravelston Park Pavilion building. Blackhall Nursery has had three extensions with planning permission granted on its current site, so this establishes a precedent. Blackhall Nursery is a community-run nursery, a charity and a company limited by guarantee, which has been successfully operating at its current location for nearly 20 years. It therefore has a strong track record and this track record will support a business case for revitalising Ravelston Park Pavilion and creating space for both Blackhall Nursery and the wider community.
Q: Do you have any idea of costs?
A: Architect Malcolm Fraser and business consultancy Caskie & Co were appointed by the Blackhall Community Trust Board with funding of £15K from the Scottish Land Fund. They advise us, that when we have a shortlist of perhaps two site options, indicative costs could be provided then. Obviously the size and complexity of each building project will vary. For example, moving the playpark could cost c £50K. Decanting the Nursery is also like to be very expensive.
Q: Where will the money come from to revitalise Ravelston Park Pavilion?
A: Caskie & Co will prepare a business plan for us. This will include possible grant funds for the build project as well as revenue sources. We are in discussions with the City of Edinburgh Council about the possibility of capital grants through Scottish Government finance allocated to delivering the 1140 hours of free early learning and childcare per child per annum for 3-5 year olds from 2020. There are ofcourse a lot of costs with a building project – drawings for planning applications (and building warrant if planning permission is granted), accountants’ proposals to HMRC about VAT, as well as the build costs.
Q: I have an idea for how the community hub could be used. What should I do?
Please either share your idea via our online survey or print out the questionnaire or email us at email@example.com. We are very keen to hear from either potential users or to hear ideas for activities etc that we could organise.
Q: What will happen to the current storage container?
A: We will ofcourse consult the community again when we have more detail to share. Ideally, we would like to include a storage facility for community groups to use as part of the building but the detailed design will have to look at this.
Q: What will the life expectancy of a new building be?
Malcolm Fraser suggested 60 years but this would depend on the construction materials. He advocates wood which can be both health promoting and low maintenance. It is also possible that some of the build could be carried out off site and craned in. The build will endeavour to be as environmentally sustainable as possible. There are some restrictions due to the location in the park; however, it is likely to be very well insulated with an effective boiler which should be an improvement on the current building which can be quite cold due to its poor original construction.
Q: How many places for children will there be in Blackhall Nursery and will they meet all the demand?
A: There would be space for 40 children. This could be a combination of children with six-hour a day places (1140 hours, due to be delivered by 2020) and children with part-day places. So actually, it is likely there would be places for between 40 children (if they were all taking up the six-hour option) and 80 children (if they were all taking the part-day option). Parental choice is required by Scottish Government. Malcolm Fraser will look at the options with a view to future-proofing – he will see if there is enough land for an extension, should one ever be needed. Blackhall Nursery does not envisage that demand for places will grow as the demographics of the area are likely to level off. The need for extra space is because of the Scottish Government’s plans for 1140 hours. Children and staff need additional space to eat and rest/have breaks.
Q: What will be the relationship of Blackhall Nursery with the building and Blackhall Community Trust?
A: Blackhall Nursery will be the main tenant. The justification and main basis for requesting a Community Asset Transfer of the Ravelston Park Pavilion site and environs is firstly, to be able to continuing meeting the needs of the community for nursery places and also, to create a community hub suitable for meetings and small-scale activities. Blackhall Nursery currently only operates on weekdays during the school term. It is envisaged that community groups could use the community space in evenings and weekends, although, depending on the layout and security of the building, it may be possible to access the community hub during the day too. This will become clearer at the detailed design stage.
Q: During the build, what will happen?
A: Depending on the final choice of build option, the nursery may have to decant to another space but it is hoped that this won’t happen. Temporary forest school options could also be possible, if funding and supplementary staff are made available by the City of Edinburgh Council. If one of the new build options is selected, then it is anticipated that the nursery would continue to operate with any build site cordoned off for health and safety of both children, staff and build workers. As much of the build as possible would be completed over the summer holidays.
Q: I am worried about additional parking.
A: Blackhall Nursery does not expect parking to increase. Indeed, if local families choose to take up the six hour per day option, there may be fewer children than at present and less dropping off and picking up. Blackhall Nursery currently has a morning class and an afternoon class, with up to 30 children in each class.
Q: I am not sure what to decide. Please help!
A: Come along to Blackhall Primary School on Wed 28 March 6.30-8.30pm and view the site options and chat them through with us. Or email your questions and we will get them answered if we can and post them here!