Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Apolitical? The Gurnmeister doesn't think so.

Last night at the Suburban CC meeting the recent drive to get Nairnites to register their comments on the Conservative campaign site 'Help our High Street' was discussed. It was stressed that this was simply a way of getting Nairn's High Street up the political agenda. The site encourages individuals to suggest ways that their High Street could enjoy a share of the £60 million that the Scottish Government has made available to improve town centres. Samantha Bacon told the meeting that she had been accused of being a conservative because she urged fellow Nairnites to submit ideas for Nairn to the site, she stressed that in fact she was 'apolitical'. The Chair John Mackie stated that he too was 'apolitical' and agreed that it was a good idea to promote Nairn regardless of the politics if there was cash available.
The Gurmeister believes that the Suburban CC is not 'apolitical however'. The community councils are very much involved in politics in the community, politics in the truesest sense, doing their best for Nairn and its citizens. Everything they do in that sense is political and to the Gurnmeister their version of politics has more meaning and value than many of the professional politicians can ever achieve. Professional politics is often more about spin than substance, with the community councils what you see is what you get! More power to the community councillors (who receive no payment for their services) and their supporters that work on our behalf - long may their version of politics survive. Frankly they are better value than anything else on offer!
Now let's have a look at some comments from Nairnites that have appeared on the platform that the Scottish Tory site offers. Remember these comments have appeared as a result of a community initiative in Nairn,
you can still add to them here. Even if it is a Tory site it will let the other parties know that Nairn wants help for its High Street.

'Nairn town centre is so run down and we have a local council who do not acknowledge this. the town centre is getting more run down every year and something has to be done quickly before more damage to the image of Nairn is done. '

'I live in a small village in the Highlands of Scotland and my nearest town centre is Nairn. Nairn occupies a special place in the hearts of its residents whose hearts are being broken by the way areas of the town are deteriorating. It is a place where you feel safe and welcome. It is a place where young and old alike can enjoy the park or the seaside or a walk by the river. But businesses are closing and the potential of the area is not being realised. Visit Nairn and see for yourselves. '

'Ok, this nomination isn't actually for the town centre itself however it is something Nairn is desperately in need of. The whole town wants a new High School to be built especially in the wake of the recent asbestos contamination which is of great concern to the parents of all children in Nairn. The local council do not seem interested in this at all but seem to be willing to splash money on projects to extend the existing school however in the long run i believe that knocking it down and starting from scratch will be more cost effective in the long run. As i have already mentioned there are lots of people who are backing this due to the contamination. Please please give this idea some serious consideration as the children of Nairn are our future and deserve better than to be taught in a 1970s asbestos contaminated School...Thank You'

'As with many towns , nairn is suffering with shops closing, Nairn has been a very popular attraction for thousands of visitors down the years, we must not lose this wee seaside gem and do what we can to try and establish a nice high street,to make visiting our town a pleasent experience again!! please please help us out !! '

'Nairn needs help to revive its name and redevelop. I have lived here for 26 years and came here as a 10 year old child. I have seen Nairn change within this time to become progressively derelict and partly neglected in the areas it could benefit so much from. New businesses coming to Nairn have tried their hardest to create a colourful cheerie environment which is nice to see but a lot more could be done here. It is about time people cared about making a difference again when they have the powers to make it possible.'
'Why Nairn? Nairn is in a beautiful position, on the coast, fine beaches, many B and Bs Hotels, Large caravan park, 2 golf courses and lots of British and foreign tourists. However the High street is run down and many shops are closing, Woolies was a local favourite and this now stands empty. We have a Jazz festival, Arts festival, Highland games, all which bring thousands of visitors, I don't want the visitors to be put off by the high street. There are also about 10,000 residents who need a bustling and busy High street.'

'Nairn has been the victim of years of very poor town centre management. This has come about because of the belief that the town centre could be regenerated on the back of the goodwill of the resident supermarket. Over the last 10 years the supermarket has changed hands some three times and on each occasion any positive move towards regenerating of the town centre has been delayed. Nairn used to be a town on the fringe of Moray Council, now it is on the fringe of Highland Council and consequently has been for 20 years at the butt end of any expenditure or formal planning process. Nairn has a Victorian history of being a gentile tourist seaside town which has systematically been destroyed over the years under the false belief that the town would self-generate once a by-pass was built. 20 years on there is still no bypass. Nobody is against change and progress provided it is sensibly and sensitively managed. BUT now the belief is that a massively over-developed site on the edge of town, built on Common Good Land, will generate funds that will be put towards the regeneration of the town centre. If anybody actually believes that the funds generated will be spent on Nairn Town, despite assurances in Council minutes that it will be ring fenced - cuckoos and clouds spring to mind!! The leadership of the Town has been dissipated by regional re-organisations and there is no formal whole-Town representation at community level. These are clearly political issues that are not going to be resolved by money alone but staking a claim to some funding from this allocation might drive the community to take charge of the vacuum created by our political masters'

'Because Nairn was a thriving town and is now being ruined by lack of investment in the High Street'

'Nairn was once known as the Brighton of the North. The High Street has declined significantly over the years and is now very tatty and although the beaches and surrounding countryside are beautiful, the High Street is an eyesore that blights the town.'

'Nairn is very much a holiday destination but like most small communities, over the past 10-20 years has started to show its age and could do with a make-over to help support the many hard working businesses who continue to struggle to keep it an attractive place for local shoppers as well as our visitors. It needs a lift to ensure its continued virility, making it a 'must' for holiday makers and Nairnites alike.'

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