Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Nairn to get a Sainsbury's store

Motion approved at the Courthouse almost on the stroke of mid-day. Vote 12-2 for the motion. All Nairn Councillors voted for the motion. Massive public turn-out, a very crowded courthouse and unfortunately not room for everyone even all standing room taken up.

An excellent decision and some very impassioned debate - more later.

Update: a very highly charged atmosphere today, there wasn't a seat to be had in the Courthouse well before 10.00 am and the situation became critical by 1015 when members of the public were soon standing all around the tables set out for the members and the applicants and objectors. With a queue still trying to get in. There were calls for the meeting to be moved to a more suitable venue. These appeals were rejected but the councillors looked very uncomfortable with the situation. Obviously a large crowd was not expected. The crowded conditions created an intimacy between the members and the public however and at least one councillor admitted at the end that he had been swayed by the power of public opinion.
Resounding applause for the applicants and their supporters that spoke and laughter for some of the comments from the objectors. Then the debate and, surprisingly for some, all of Nairn's councillors indicated their support for the Sainsbury's store but with reservations. We will bring you more on this debate later. It was a remarkable occasion to witness and perhaps marks a turning point in local peoples input into the deomocratic process in the town. Well done Nairn's four councillors 'The Fantastic Four?' for having the bottle to go against the planners and side with the public!

When the motion was passed the applause would have been heard down at the bottom of the brae.


5 comments:

iRight said...

I am most heartened to hear that the voice of the people was recognised and Sainsbury’s given the go ahead. It is all too easy these days to feel disillusioned with government not listening to its citizens
Well done to the Gurn for such excellent coverage of the event on what is a truly historic day for Nairn, and many thanks to all those folks who attended the meeting to show public support for the development
I just might vote in the next election!

jayteescot1 said...

Well done ! A victory for democracy and commmon sense for the residents of Nairn.
This should inject some new life and business into the Town.

Bill said...

Excellent news! Now we must hope that the planning officials do not somehow manage to reverse this decision taken by elected officials.

Graisg said...

Good point Bill. It still has some distance to go and one seasoned observer of planning issues reckons that it might be at least one and a half Bill Birthdays before we see any action on the Sainsbury site.
Interesting now to see if Somerfield still go ahead with their development and whether anyone really cares.

Calum said...

Awful! I know Somerfield is not may be the supermarket Nairn want, but it’s a darn sight better than any of the others. I worked for Safeway, Morrisons and then Somerfield in Elgin and Somerfield was the best with staff care out of them all. It was a shame the redundancy package wasn’t up to much. With Woolworths now gone and Sainsburys coming, the Nairn town centre will die.
To your comment Graisg about Somerfield going ahead with their development, it will not be up to them. The Co-Operative has taken over Somerfield and will most probably sell one of the stores. Hey look on the bright side at least there will be no competition on price; they are both as extortionate as each other!