Council assurances on HRI

Buchan area manager Chris White with the Peterhead Town Centre report.
Buchan area manager Chris White with the Peterhead Town Centre report.

A leading council official has told the Buchanie that residents of Peterhead will be consulted before a decision is made on town regeneration.

Consulting architectural firm HRI were due to deliver a comprehensive report about a range of initiatives to the Buchan Area Committee last month but the presentation was delayed.

Local residents have expressed concerns that their views will not be considered before money is allocated by the council.

Now Aberdeenshire Council’s Buchan Area Manager, Chris White, has said: “The HRI work is being closely looked at by colleagues in economic development and should now go in front of local politicians at Area Committee on April 22.

“Immediately after that we will be looking to get ideas and involvement from all interested parties.

“This will involve a public consultation which we intend to host in a town centre site the following week.”

The report will map out key proposals for a £500,000 regeneration package for Peterhead.

But it was returned to the Inverness-based company for ‘improvements.’

Earlier this month Peterhead resident Stephen Calder wrote to the Buchanie to express his concerns.

He said: “For months now, unbeknown to the majority of Peterhead citizens, meetings have been taking place between ‘stakeholders’, council officials and HRI architects to influence the much awaited report into the regeneration of Peterhead town centre.

“Surely the residents of Peterhead are ‘stakeholders’ in our own town?

“Why have we been deliberately excluded from influencing a report into the regeneration of our town centre?”

Aberdeenshire Council will hope Mr White’s comments can go some way to easing the concerns of residents.

HRI were hired as consultants after the findings of last year’s town centre survey were compiled.

The survey showed that there is an appetite for regeneration of the town centre among Peterhead residents.