SNP finally agree to keep a primary school in Kilbirnie
North Ayrshire SNP has been pressured into allowing Moorpark Primary School to remain in Kilbirnie, following extensive public outcry from parents in Kilbirnie and Beith, The original proposal was to include Moorpark and Glengarnock Primary Schools in the new Garnock Academy Campus at North Lochshore. But the SNP’s decision to go against local wishes and move the Campus to Longbar put the whole scheme in doubt.
Parents had already made their views clear with a petition of over 2500 signatures opposing the site change for the new Garnock campus. When the SNP refused to listen to their views, the local community again stated their concerns over travel distances and the safety of routes to the SNP’s remote and isolated Longbar site.
The committee heard the results of the consultation with parents which made clear that any benefits of being part of the new Campus were heavily outweighed by the difficulties posed by the remote isolated Longbar site. The parents voted overwhelmingly to keep Moorpark out of the Garnock project if it was to go ahead so far from the town.
John Bell, Labour Councillor for the Garnock Valley, said:
"This is a victory for the Moorpark Primary parents and the community who have successfully forced the administration to concede that the Longbar site is too far from the community. However there are still concerns for the secondary pupils of both Kilbirnie and Beith in travelling to the remote and isolated site. Users of the Garnock pool will also find difficulty in accessing the new facility if it is at Longbar.
"This should have been a major opportunity for the Garnock valley but the project has been diminished by the poor choice of site. No matter how good the new facilities might be, they are inaccessible for the majority of the community.
“The administration believes that positioning the Camous between Kilbirnie and Beith the SNP will allow them to cut school buses from Beith while being positioned so that Kilbirnie pupils will not qualify for free transport either. It’s no more than a scam to cut costs while increasing the difficulty and the danger for our pupils.”
“Even at this late stage I call on the the administration to see sense and revert to the more central Kilbirnie site which was within safe walking distance for Kilbirnie pupils and kept free transport for Beith and Dalry pupils”.