Friday, August 07, 2009

Nairn - Capturing the hope and the despair

Morning Gurnites, I was going to start the day with a reminder that there has been a lot of material published on the Gurn this week and that it was worth a scroll down to see some of this, especially the letter from Shuan MacDonald. However a comment from Nairnbairn on another thread achieves this purpose and thus, we post that comment in its own right.
'This and the preceding blog once again capture both the hope and the despair that so many of us feel about what is happening in Nairn. Shaun Macdonald's impassioned plea - and the comments it has inspired - show the imagination and the positive thinking that is typical of those many people who want to see Nairn become a better and more attractive place. Such sentiments inspire hope.
Then in the very next blog, we read of the reality. Proof that - as had been predicted - closure of the local planning office has sown confusion among officials (and even developers' agents!) and caused inconvenience to residents. Local concern that this Water Lane proposal may herald similar unwelcome development bids on other "spare land" in future. And a not unreasonable suspicion that yet another High Street landmark (Woolies) might end up as flats.
So hope rapidly turns to despair. While the positive thinkers offer ideas (arts centre, galleries, whatever), the developers are busy trying to exploit the opportunities that arise because of the absence of a coherent plan and vision for the regeneration of Nairn.
What will it take to mobilise the town into taking creative, positive, constructive action to revive the town centre? As Shaun pointed out, some (Book & Arts, Jazz, etc) are doing what they can. But where is the civic leadership which this town needs?
I was reminded of lines from a TS Eliot poem:
"Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow..."
And the title of the poem from which this comes....?
"The Hollow Men". '

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