David's tireless community work gets heralded

posted 3 Sept 2009, 08:48 by South Edinburgh Net Admin
The tireless work of community activist David Rintoul is to be recognised at the City Chambers with the award of this year's Sir William Y Darling Bequest for Good Citizenship.

Mr Rintoul, 64, who lives in Tollcross, will receive the honour from Lord Provost George Grubb on Tuesday in recognition of years of service to the area.

He has been an active member of Tollcross Community Council for 15 years, spending five years as its chairman, and also runs the Tollcross Online community website in his own time.

He was nominated for the award by the Tollcross Traders' Association. Chairman John Saunderson said: "We nominated him for everything that he does for the area. He does a lot for the community council and he's helped us with our association – he's very deserving of this. We brought it up at one of our meetings and all the traders agreed that we should nominate David for everything he's done."

David's parents and grandparents lived in Tollcross before him, although he was actually born in Preston while the family were travelling home from a trip to Hastings.

The family moved around the Capital during his younger years, but returned to Tollcross when he was aged around 13 and a pupil at George Watson's College.

On leaving Watson's he became an apprentice fitter-turner at Ferranti, and has also worked as a croupier and a bingo manager. His varied career has taken him to different parts of the UK for various spells, but he has always returned to Tollcross, where he is now retired.

He recalled the early days of his community activism: "The biggest thing was back in the 60s and 70s when they wanted to knock all this down and put a motorway across the Meadows and demolish the whole area of Tollcross. I was on a tenants' and resident's association then, fighting that, along with lots of others.

"They wanted to knock everything down from what is now the Quartermile to the Cameo and to make Tollcross junction into a big roundabout with a supermarket underneath it. Luckily it was fought and won, not just for the Tollcross area, but for the Southside as well."

He said he was delighted to receive the award, but despite his years of work for Tollcross, is not starry-eyed about his home: "I suppose I do love Tollcross, but it could be a lot better. I like to try and help Tollcross get on its feet really, a lot of people don't know what's here."

Councillor Grubb said: "Mr Rintoul has long been a tireless champion of community matters in Tollcross. It is fitting that his dedication and commitment to the wellbeing of his community should be recognised in this way."

The award was initiated by the late Sir William Y Darling, a Lord Provost of Edinburgh in the 1940's, who left a bequest allowing an annual award to be made to a citizen or citizens who in the opinion of the council had done most for the city's welfare.

Source: Edinburgh Evening News