...for the moment anyway. In recent years the town's community councils have not been shy on putting in submissions to planning applications in each other's areas, Nairn South and the former Doctor's Surgery (now the Vets) are just too of many that spring immediately to this observer's mind. It was a little unusual then to see reluctance from NWSCC at their regular monthly meeting last night to make any submission. The majority attitude was that it was in Nairn River Community Council's area and that was that. Mention was made of how members of the public in the NWSCC might be just as interested as the NRCC area residents given the significance and scale of the retail development and the ongoing discussions on social media. NRCC last week came out against the proposal and there is more on the discussion at their meeting in today's Nairnshire Telegraph.
Last night, there was a call for a submission to be made however by member of NWSCC, Andrew Randerson, who made an impassioned plea for all those that support the application to go onto the Highland Council e-planning pages, register, and state their approval. His appeal was not without support on the Council and the public benches last night. NWSCC did not make a decision however, and may communicate amongst themselves on the matter in the near future.
There are several reasons why the NRCC have said that they can not support the recent planning application for increased development at the Sainsbury's site on the Forres Road.
1 A decision was made many months ago that no more development would be supported until the Town infrastructure was sorted. This includes the sewerage system; fresh water provision and the A96 congestion amongst others.
This is consisent with the agreed position taken by both the NRCC and the NWSCC, if I remember correctly.
2 The Sainsbury's application in 2010 was approved on condition that - None of the non-food retail unit(s) shall sell clothing, footwear, watches, jewellery, fashion accessories or toys - and - No part of the development shall be used as a café, restaurant (other than staff café or restaurant), post office or pharmacy. Reason (conditions 2-4): To help
to protect the vitality and viability of Nairn town centre and the continued provision of local retail facilities elsewhere in Nairn.
Why bother with conditions at all if we jump to disregard them at the request of a "favoured" provider or providers?
3 The SUDS arrangements are to be discharged into the Auldearn Burn; a stream already in danger of breaching several times each year - remember when it did quite dramatically in recent times? This could easily endanger the residents at Balmakeith Park or should we just disregard these people? I would have thought that certain members of the NWSCC would have had more respect for the people of Nairn even if the do reside outwith our area.
As mentioned elsewhere the NRCC will not regard any polls unless all of the electorate are given the opportunity to respond and not just those active on "social" media. The recent polls were, I believe, not endorsed by that Community Council.
I can understand 2 and 3 but position 1 seems like we shall cut off our nose to spite our face.
It's too late to save the high street.
I walked down at 10 to 5. Two weeks pass Saturday & I could have counted the foot fall on one hand.
A change for my teenaged days when it was still teeming with folk at that time of the Day.
So what difference would a couple of more retail units would make to our town.
Even if one is a fast food outlet.
They've talked about regeneration of the town centre for years.
I haven't seen much progress there.
To true the high streets is dead already
Regeneration don't see much sign if that a couple of retail units can't make it any worse that it is already even if ones is a fast food outlet.
If people are so desperate for fast food get it in the town centre, then the clientele can pay parking charges along with everyone else. It wouldn’t be my choice of eatery but at least it would increase footfall in the town.
In the days when the town was busy what shops and businesses were open then to keep the town busy? The town wasn’t a rapidly expanding dormitory town for Inverness then.
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