Councillors welcome progress of £1.8m sport and leisure scheme for Stonehaven

The Stonehaven community will have its say and decide how £1.8m will be spent on sport and leisure locally.

Monday, 20th September 2021, 2:15 pm
The investment in sports and leisure infrastructure in the town has created a “real buzz”

Members of the Communities Committee at Aberdeenshire Council heard an update on the participatory budgeting process known as ‘Voice Your Choice’ at its latest meeting.

The process is led by Live Life Aberdeenshire (LLA). To support this, a reference group was formed including representatives of LLA, the council, Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership, and a range of community and sports groups.

More than 100 suggestions were submitted during August via the council’s online Engagement HQ portal.

Workshops have been held with a range of sports clubs who are members of the Stonehaven Community Sports Hub to look at the ideas submitted, as well as exploring opportunities for increased collaboration.

Committee chairwoman Councillor Anne Stirling described the project as ‘a great example of what can happen and is happening in Aberdeenshire’.

Stonehaven and Lower Deeside Councillor Sarah Dickinson said: “This investment in sports and leisure infrastructure in the town is very welcome and there is a real buzz around it, with some great ideas coming forward through the clubs and the community for consideration as options.”

Banff and District councillor Glen Reynolds also welcomed the project and the way it had been implemented as ‘a fantastic illustration of best practice’, while North Kincardine councillor Colin Pike asked that every effort be made to ensure all members of the community would be able participate in the upcoming voting process and details be kept of projects not be taken forward at this time.

Focus groups are to be organised to raise awareness of the voting process and arrangements will be made to ensure people can vote online or in person.

The options were shared with Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee at its meeting on Tuesday, and a further report will be brought before the Communities Committee in October.

A public vote on the fully developed options will take place during October, and it is hoped work will start on the successful projects by March 2023.