Wanted – town team spirit
In a bid to capture and further stimulate the enthusiasm evident at the recent Fort William town centre meetings, The Highland Council along with the Friends of the Old Fort are inviting willing volunteers to band together to make a difference to their town.
The Fort William charrette was an event aimed at identifying what people wanted to see in their town, in the short to long term and drawing up an action plan to help deliver that vision. The meetings were well attended by a diverse range of people including property owners, agencies and keen individuals both young and old. Wide-ranging ideas came back in response including thoughts of more access to the waterfront, tidying up shop fronts, creating town gateways with public art among other suggestions.
One of the key outcomes from the two days of discussions was the will to see a ‘town team’ established which would help undertake general works in the town to improve the environment for local people and visitors alike.
In order to assess the number of people who may be interested in this and also to determine what works people think need done, a public meeting is being held at 7pm on Thursday 19 June in the Council Chambers, Lochaber House, High Street, Fort William.
Highland Council Area Leader Councillor Thomas MacLennan said: “There was a lot of interest and enthusiasm at the Fort William Charrette, from young and old and it was encouraging to see so many people who didn't want to just moan about their town, but had some good ideas and wanted to see it change for the better. If you want to improve this town get involved, come along on the 19th to Lochaber House and let’s get things underway.”
Norrie MacLean, Chairman of Friends of the Old Fort, said: “Things are really beginning to happen in this town, all in a positive way. It is great the leadership that is being shown from the council and now it is time for action. I would appeal to anyone with an interest in improving our town centre environment to come along to the meeting where we can start to piece together a plan for action. We can then roll our sleeves up and set about the job of beautifying our town.
“It is amazing what can be achieved when a community pulls together. If a little group like FOOF can succeed in improving the Old Fort and the gardens outside the Belford Hospital, just think what a larger town team could achieve.”