Project looks forward to 2015

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Aberdeenshire Council’s Regeneration Action Plan for Fraserburgh will continue after an Infrastructure Services committee (ISC) endorsed an update report which revealed the project is making good progress.

In 2013, Aberdeenshire Council agreed its regeneration strategy would focus on Fraserburgh, as the area of most need within the region.

ISC allocated funding of £400,000 to support the strategy.

The Regeneration Action Plan encompasses a range of environmental, economic and social projects for Fraserburgh, in collaboration with public and private sector partners.

Highlights of the Action Plan so far are plentiful and varied.

The Fraserburgh Super Saturdays project was recently announced as runner-up in the urban regeneration ‘SURF’ awards which recognised the positive impact the Saturday shopping project was having on the town centre.

Furthermore, the Super Saturdays team released its ‘miFraserburgh’ free smartphone app which provides promotional information on local deals and events for residents and visitors.

The town also hosted the Scottish Windfest on Tour festival of water sports and extreme sports in August, which inspired positive publicity and showcased Fraserburgh’s beautiful coastline to an international audience.

The Fraserburgh Cinema project, run by the Fraserburgh Junior Arts Society and Film Mobile Scotland, will continue to work with the council’s regeneration team.

Most film screenings to date have been sell outs, and the Junior Arts group are recuperating a small profit.

Other regeneration projects are also making good progress.

Construction of the Fraserburgh Harbour Pontoons has been brought forward and the first grant payment is currently being processed.

A total of £75,000 has been allocated to the pontoon project, which supports an application made by Fraserburgh Harbour Commissioners to the Aberdeenshire European Fisheries Fund (AEFF).

In addition to stimulating the local economy, the regeneration plan seeks to improve employability.

Employment services such as job clubs and skills training have generated huge interest, with more than 150 people finding full or part-time work.

The foundation work of 30 sustainable homes is nearing completion on Fraserburgh’s Denmark Street, as part of the Scottish Government’s Greener Homes Innovation Fund.

The houses are being built using environmentally-friendly construction methods, and will also benefit residents, helping families save up to £1,000 a year on home running costs.

Plans for The Big Clean-up project, which will include chewing gum removal and unblocking drains, are currently being costed.

Service budgets will be topped up with regeneration funds, and the cleanup will cover many parts of the town including Saltoun Square, Kirk Brae and High Street.

ISC chairman Councillor Peter Argyle said after the meeting: “Everyone involved in the Fraserburgh Regeneration Action Plan is doing a fantastic job.

“The decision to continue supporting the project into 2015 is an exciting one.

“The recent SURF award nomination for the Super Saturdays team was a great accolade and well-deserved recognition of the team’s efforts.

“I look forward to seeing the harbour pontoon provisions taking shape next year, and the economic benefits that these will bring to Fraserburgh,” he added.