Last stop for the ‘First Shop’; Cumbernauld First Stop Shop to move next month

Written by Scott Campbell. Scott Campbell
Published at 14:41 on 17 May 2014.
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AS WORK gets under way to assess the viability of a brand new multiplex for Cumbernauld town centre, North Lanarkshire Council has confirmed that the area’s First Stop Shop will be moving location next month. 

The council has confirmed that Cumbernauld First Stop Shop – located at 2-4 Forth Walk, in Cumbernauld town centre – will relocate to Fleming House by the start of June. 

First Stop Shops across North Lanarkshire provide to face-to-face contact for people wanting information on a variety of council services, such as paying council tax. 

The facilities offer residents the opportunity to report roads, footpath and lighting defects, get advice on applications for housing benefits and council or rent rebates, request special uplifts and report litter problems, request maintenance or repairs to a council house, apply for help through the Garden Assistance Scheme, collect and submit application forms for all council services, find information about council meetings, councillors' surgeries, council vacancies and the electoral register, and, access to information on services such as debt and money advice, community care and health services, consumer advice and public transport.

North Lanarkshire Council has confirmed, however, that Cumbernauld’s First Stop Shop will be moving from Forth Walk to Fleming House – with the new facility due to open on Monday 2nd June.

The move follows a similar relocation by Motherwell’s First Stop Shop, which relocated to Dalziel House, on Scott Street back in February.

Councillor Bob Burrows, Convener of Finance and Customer Services welcomed the move at the time.

He said: "Our network of First Stop Shops give residents access to information and advice on all council services in their local town centre.

"Customers can talk to our experienced staff face-to-face who will also help with completing forms. The new premises for Motherwell First Stop Shop will have an improved environment for customers, including more interview rooms to allow people to discuss issues privately.”

The Thorniewood Labour councillor said “local people will benefit” from the move, because “many local services [will be] under one roof.”

He added: "With the Municipal Bank, Trading Standards and Skills Development Scotland all located in the Dalziel Building beside the First Stop Shop, local people will benefit from having so many local services under one roof.”

The Labour man then confirmed that various other North Lanarkshire First Stop Shops will follow the example of Motherwell.

Councillor Burrows added: "The improvements to the Motherwell office are the first in a series of upgrades to our First Stop Shops which will see further investment in the Cumbernauld, Wishaw and Airdrie offices.”

Since February, Cumbernauld has been confirmed as the second town to have changes made to its ‘First Stop Shop’ service, with the new facility to open on the ground floor of Fleming House on June 2nd. 

“Work is ongoing to improve the facilities offered and the capacities of our network of first stop shops. These improvements are based on the improved level of service delivered when we re−launched the Coatbridge First Stop Shop in the Buchanan Centre,” a council report into the relocation notes.

“We have seen an increase in demand at our First Stop Shops. This increase has been predominantly as a result of Welfare reform,” the report adds.

“Total customer visits to our first stop shops and municipal bank for the year was 1,127,868. Customers had an average wait time of 4 min 16 sec.”

A council spokesperson confirmed the move will take place in less than three weeks’ time: “The Cumbernauld FSS will be relocating from the current shopping centre site to the ground floor of Fleming House. Work is currently underway on the necessary structural changes.”
 
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