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The truths they don't want you to read....

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Back home

Building siteIt is good to be back home, apart from the weather, the cold and the absence of cold drinks around the pool.

But you can't have everything.

A tour through town on the busiest week of the year shows that the visitors to the Celtic Festival are in fine form, despite having to negotiate the building site that is the town centre.

With tourists looking to gain an impression of Stornoway, having diggers surrounded by security fencing blocking most of the pedestrian precinct gives the impression of down-town down-market Pyongyang rather than a busy island town.

I've been trying to find if there was a deadline for the works to be compelted - given that they were decided upon, tendered, accepted and funded in a two month period, due to the sudden appearance of some Scottish Government funding - and I am told that there was no consideration of the works taking place through the busiest time of the year. But that might just be a Councillor covering their backside.

I'd like to think that the work will be done soon, but looking at it, it is difficult to judge how long it is likely to take. A wild guess might be that it will be completed just after the tourists leave.

I really hope it is worth it when it is completed.


Anonymous said...

Don't hold your breath, I hear UBC are about to go on there hols.

Flirty Gerty said...

I own and run a local tourism business and I am furious at the state of the town - the main square, the mess outside Murdo Maclean, the path to the Woodlands Centre from the Bayhead Bridge and the scaffolding over Heb Jewellery/Church St. and further along over the old Smiths Shoe Shop.

This was the 15th HebCelt Festival and a great chance to build a fantastic reputation amongst visitors. All wasted.

They couldn't have messed it up more if they had set up an Office for Visually Intrusive and Disruptive Building Works (Stornoway) (July 2010) Branch.

I'm sure that when we ask, we'll get the usual 'limited grant deadline' and 'works over-run' excuse but FFS! The retail businesses in town (not mine) depend upon footfall and custom during these weeks to keep them alive during the dreich winter months. That's real business, real work, real jobs we're talking about - all wasted from a lack of parking, lack of space and mess.

And will the coves responsible do anything but wring their hands when the shop-fronts of Stornoway go dark and close up this winter? Not a chance. Too busy calculating their pension benefits.

Anonymous said...

The town centre is a disgrace at the moment. Tourists are greeted by a place that is torn apart, no public loos, dirty, unwelcoming and weather beaten.
It's great that our great and good are doing so much to promote and support these Islands....

Anonymous said...

Why dont intelligent people stand for election to this council, or is that frowned upon...Why dont we just twin Stornoway with Helmand?

Dr Evadne said...

And of course, anyone who dares to complain about the mess..for example a tourist, they get full blast from pompous Cllr McCormack or some numpty from the Stornoway Trust. Every summer there is some magnificent own goal in terms of attracting visitors; museum closed, sports centre closed, town centre closed, bogs closed, Sunday...closed. When visitors bother to write to complain, the twats at the council should take note and be grateful that someone actually gives a toss. Or perhaps the council don't really want anyone to visit.

Pick up a copy of Events or The Heb and its full of private firms trying their best to make a go of it and provide tourists and locals with facilities and hospitality that is suitable for century spite of this council. Get stuffed Maccormack or whatever your bloody name is!

Anonymous said...

Dr Evadne for Convenor!

Anonymous said...

What about the carpark extension at the old fuel depot? How can it take over three months to knock down an office and spread a layer of tar?
Methinks someone is taking the pish here!

Anonymous said...

Inverness Caley Thistle put up two stands at their stadium in a couple of months...I take it that it wasn't Uist Builders(or whoever) that managed that. I've been waiting months just for the joiner to come and make a plan for me...I'll be 85 before he starts on it. I think people should employ tradesmen from Ullapool etc ...that would get our local friends into a fizzle. As a local myself, I know how they work. You have to keep chasing these guys all the time yet still....

Anonymous said...

Whether we get the councillors we deserve is an open question, intelligent or not. What is evident from this thread is that there are people who are willing to comment, usually uber-critically and often offensively, on a whole range of subjects but only from the anonymity of their PCs.
Sure, Dr Evadne (or Flirty Gerty, or Anonymous 1, 2 3 or 4) for convener.
But there's the little detail that you need to identify yourselves, get people to nominate you, and then get votes.
There's no shortage of opinions from these people, and an evident high level of self-regard. Can't we persuade them to test it against other peoples' regard?

Dr Evadne said...

As a doctor, I am often asked 'why don't you put your name down to become a convenor?'. My Reply to these well meaning folk is that I would have more chance of an invite for herring & tatties with Liz & Phil on board the Hebridean Princess.

Which Cllr are you 5.41pm?