News

The Latest news from Dumfries and Galloway Chamber of Commerce -

Keep up to date with the latest news and stories from across Dumfries & Galloway.

 

MSP URGES NEW WEST COAST RAIL FIRM TO IMPROVE SERVICE AT LOCKERBIE STATION

South Scotland MSP and Scottish Labour’s Transport Spokesperson Colin Smyth has called on First Group to commit to improving services for passengers at Lockerbie Railway Station following the announcement that the company is taking over the running of the West Coast mainline train route from December.

 

Colin Smyth at Lockerbie

 

Along with Italian stated owned firm Trenitalia, FirstGroup replaces Virgin Trains, which was barred from bidding to keep the route to run trains from London Euston to Glasgow. At present only, a fraction of services stop at Lockerbie Station and Colin Smyth has written to the Chief Executive of First Group Matthew Gregory to urge the firm to commit to increasing that number. He has also called on Mr Gregory to commit First Group to making a contribution towards the cost of increasing car parking at the station.

Colin Smyth has been campaigning for better services at Lockerbie Train Station since his election in 2016.

Colin Smyth said, “The franchise announcement today which will see FirstGroup and Trenitalia run the West Coast mainline is a huge missed opportunity for the services to be brought back under public control. By returning our railways to public ownership would see profits re-invested in services and rail infrastructure which would improve services from Lockerbie, not taken out of our services for private profits.

I have written to the Chief Executive of FirstGroup to urge the new franchise to increase the number of services from Lockerbie. At present more West Coast Mainline services between London and Glasgow pass through Lockerbie Station without stopping than actually stop and that is a disgrace. More and more passengers want to use Lockerbie Station yet the private rail companies aren’t delivering the services people want. First Group have said they will increase services on the line from Motherwell but they need to do the same from Lockerbie. I have also urged the company to contribute to the cost of increasing parking at Lockerbie Train Station. It is train operators who benefit from the passengers who use the station and any increased parking, so they should shoulder some of the cost and not leave it all to the local council taxpayer.”

MSP Colin Smyth Hits Out at Rip-off Rail Rises

Local Labour MSP Colin Smyth has hit out at the rip-off rail fare rise that will hit passengers in Dumfries and Galloway.

 

Colin Smyth at Kirkconnel Train Station

 

Regulated rail fares increase in line with the Retail Price Index (RPI). As a result, a season ticket fare between Dumfries and Glasgow will rise by £125 in January to £4,601. Season ticket fares between Dumfries and Carlisle will increase by £68 while season fares between Dumfries and Annan will increase by £37 taking the total season rail fare to £2,528 and £       1,377 respectively.

Commuters from Lockerbie Train Station to Glasgow and Edinburgh will also face rip off rail fare rises.

Colin Smyth MSP thinks it is simply unfair that passengers in Dumfries and Galloway are burdened with these rip-off rail fares when passengers are constantly facing delays, cancellations and overcrowding.

Colin Smyth said, “These rail fare rises are unwanted, unwelcome and unnecessary. It is simply unfair that commuters in Dumfries and Galloway are being burdened with these rip-off rail fares for less than satisfactory services.

The cost of rail fares being paid by passengers is simply unacceptable with passengers commuting between Dumfries and Glasgow facing a season ticket rise of £125 and passengers between Lockerbie and Edinburgh facing a rise of £147.

Scottish Labour is clear. It’s high time working people stopped having to pay such excessive fares to simply line the pockets of private companies. Only Labour is fighting for a publicly owned railway which will serve the many, not just the few.”

Dumfries security company appointed QOS match day contract

DGChamber Partner for Business Croma Vigilant have been awarded the contract to provide match day security for Scottish Championship football club; Queen of the South.

 

Croma win QOS Security Contract, Claire, Paul, Billy and Danny

 

Croma Vigilant will be providing customer service focused stewards at all home matches over the following two seasons. Provision kicked off on the 13th of July, where we provided 15 security stewards for Queen’s opening match against Motherwell.

Croma Vigilant officers are high lightly trained to deliver a positive experience for home and away fans visiting Palmerston Park, focusing on the safety of fans whilst also enhancing their experience by serving as a friendly face and match day host.

Claire Rutherford, Commercial Manager commented;
‘We are extremely excited about this contract award and there is a real sense of pride throughout the business to be working with our ‘hame team’. We look forward to building a partnership with the club and supporting QOS through the next two seasons.’

Billy Hewitson, Queen of the South Chairman said:

“We are delighted to have secured a two year deal with local company Croma Vigilant.  We are looking forward to working with them and believe that in partnership with our Security officer, Phil Stewart and his team they will build a good partnership to deliver safety within the stadium.  Croma have already staffed a couple of our games this season and have been well received”.

This appointment underpins Croma Vigilant's strength in the events sector, adding to current prestigious venues to include Heart of Midlothian, The Edinburgh International Conference Centre and Dynamic Earth.

 

GalloGlas to join forces with Balkan Security Academy

GalloGlas Security & Logistics are today delighted to announce a partnership with Balkan Security Academy (BSA).  BSA are the only SIA approved Training Company in Eastern Europe providing courses taught by British instructors with military and civil police backgrounds, as well as over 20 years of combined front line operational and client experience in hostile environments. Continuously delivering exceptional operators from their course, this is in line with their planned expansion goals.

 

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What does this news mean?

In a move that will see GalloGlas Security & Logistics Ltd as a Group restructure into various bodies, GalloGlas Security Solutions Ltd will now add the SIA Close Protection Level 3 qualification to its catalogue.  As part of the restructuring, we also can announce that Steve ‘Tab’ Lambert will be announced as Director of Training for GalloGlas Security Solutions and will lead the team of highly trained and experienced UK licensed protection personnel.  Tab brings with him an exceptional amount of experience, both operationally and from a security training environment on a Global level.  Following on from the SIA CP Course, GalloGlas will also be able to offer students various fully accredited ‘bolt ons’ which can include Medical, Live Firing Ranges and Advanced Security Chauffeur Driving to name but a few. 

 

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We will also see the creation of GalloGlas Logistical Solutions, GalloGlas Integrated Training Solutions and finally GalloGlas EcoClean which is expected Q1 2020. Integrated Training Solutions will see Campbell Young move from Group Sales Manager to MD Integrated Training Solutions.  EcoClean ties in fantastically with fundamentals of the Group strategy to help companies lower their carbon footprint and will be the regions first fully Eco-Friendly cleaning company even down to how the staff travel, with more on this to follow.

Based in Dumfries, Scotland; GalloGlas is situated on old RAF Dumfries which during WWII was primarily a training depot, so it is apt to see security themed training continue with GalloGlas.  The training area lends itself to a perfect environment to train in, from built up areas to runways to derelict buildings to forests.  Dumfries and Galloway itself is steeped in history, which includes the invention of the first bicycle, and is where Robert the Bruce killed the Red Comyn.  Famous sons born in the area are the likes of Calvin Harris, John Paul Jones (Father of the US Navy) and John Laurie who starred as Private Frazer in Dads Army!

Course dates shall start being worked on and shall be released in due course.  In the meantime, if you wish to register your name or require further information please see the following contact details

GalloGlas Security Solutions
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Balkan Security Academy
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UNEMPLOYMENT FIGURES HIGHEST THIS YEAR IN DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY

South Scotland Labour MSP Colin Smyth has called for urgent action after unemployment figures in Dumfries and Galloway show they are the highest this year.

 

 

Figures published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that in July 2019 2,655 people across Dumfries and Galloway were claiming out of work benefits. It meant that in July this year 3% of the working age population were claiming out of work benefits and looking for work.

This was the highest out of work benefit claimant count since March 2014 when 2,700 people across the region were looking for work.

Colin Smyth said, “Behind these figures are people across our region desperately looking for employment. With 2,655 in Dumfries and Galloway out of work it is clear that urgent action must be taken”.

“Much has been said about the signing of the Borderlands Growth Deal and the establishment of the South of Scotland Enterprise Agency. However, neither of these will deliver for people looking for jobs in our region right here, right now.  They and their families can’t wait. When you speak to businesses in the area, it is also clear that for many the fear over leaving the EU, particularly the increasing likeliness of a no-deal Brexit, is creating a barrier to job creation. Many businesses are choosing not to take people on at the moment because they are so uncertain about the future and realise that no matter what preparations are made, crashing out of the EU without a deal will hurt businesses in Dumfries and Galloway and damage trade”.