Residents will now have had time to digest the content of East Renfrewshire Council’s budget for the 2018/19 financial year.

I do not pretend that we are in such a good place financially that further difficult decisions will not be required in the future but I am delighted that our budget for next year has managed to avoid the worst of the potential cuts on offer.

We are continuing to protect our vital frontline services and pressing ahead with key areas of investment.

It is clear that, in terms of councils in Scotland, East Renfrewshire Council is in a very good place.

Much of the new capital investment has been in Barrhead and I was delighted to be present and indeed to participate in the opening of the new Sir Harry Burns Centre, in Auchenback.

Sir Harry was present to open the centre named after him and, as a native and long-time resident of Barrhead, he is very well known to many in the local community.

It was great to see and chat to Sir Harry at the official opening ceremony. We are all very much indebted to him for his help and hard work in creating such a valuable local amenity.

The work done within the Sir Harry Burns Centre will not become apparent for many years to come. The support provided now to young, vulnerable children will greatly help them to mature into valuable members of the community in later years, able to maximise their potential in life.

I have been very happy to see all parties supporting our council to ensure such a valuable project came to fruition.

On a different note, I hope that all East Renfrewshire residents had a pleasant, peaceful and restful Easter break.

The weather in recent times has been harsher than normal and winter has seemed never ending.

Combined with an early Easter, the weather has not been great for getting out and about. However, the lighter nights are now with us and, hopefully, spring has now sprung – meaning we can look forward to some sunshine and warmth sooner rather than later.

I read with interest the recent study showing that May was the sunniest and driest month in Scotland.

The study also highlighted that last August was fairly miserable in terms of the number of wet days that month.

In short, the advice of meteorologists who produced the report is to get out and about as early as possible and enjoy the early summer weather when it arrives.

I don’t always believe the weather experts but this seems like good advice to me.