STP ‘Plan B’ meeting provides lively debate

STP Douglas Samways at the exhibition on Wednesday
STP Douglas Samways at the exhibition on Wednesday

A meeting held by Stonehaven Town Partnership to gain the views of the town and present their ‘Plan B’ for Stonehaven saw some lively discussion.

Almost 200 people attended the meeting at Stonehaven Town Hall on Wednesday night (August 27).

An exhibition before the meeting saw people get the first chance to look at STP’s proposal. STP said that the meeting was designed to provide an opportunity for Stonehaven residents, business owners and other interested parties to have an open conversation about what type of development would best suit the town, and examine potential solutions that have not yet been examined.

Speaking at the meeting was Aberdeenshire Council Planning Policy team leader Piers Blaxter and STP chairman Douglas Samways. The crowd also heard from representatives from Ellon and Banff on their dealings with supermarkets.

Minister of Dunnottar and Stonehaven South Churches, Rosslyn Duncan, chaired the evening event.

The first real reaction from the crowd came 40 minutes into the meeting when Piers Blaxter mentioned that the Recreation grounds as a site was rejected. The crowd burst out with applause and again shortly after when Mr Blaxter mentioned that Infrastructure Serivces Committee rejected the Mains of Cowie site.

Discussion to panel saw lively questions from town members including business owners and representatives. Frank Budd from the Stonehaven Tourism Group asked Douglas Samways if he was surprised at the turnout due to the threat of the recreation ground.

Mr Samways replied that he was glad to see so many people at the meeting and that STP were here to gain the views of the town. Mr Agnew representing the trustees of the recreation ground also said that the grounds were not available.

One resident of Stonehaven said: “It seems to me that a lot of people have come here with closed minds, it seems to me that people here want a supermarket for the town but no one has an idea where to put it.”

David Strang Steel from the New Mains of Ury which has Plans for a proposed supermarket and HQ development in Stonehaven said that if his bid was accepted he would look into giving something back to Stonehaven whether it was working with STP, the recreation grounds or a general fund for the town.

Speaking to us after the meeting STP Chairman Douglas Samways said: “The good thing about tonight is the amount of people that turned up and that we had a real discussion. We will continue on the consultation with the people of Stonehaven and I stress that we are here to work and do what the community wants us to do.”

What did you think of the meeting and the plans? Send you views to