Looking at Dunoon: where next?

Dunoon B1

We’ve looked at the good, the bad and the downright ugly in Dunoon – and there are plenty of all of them.

The question is what the town can do with itself as it stands on the edge of being irrecoverable.

There is no money to replace the Queen’s Hall. There is no chance that the town centre can be remodelled to address the water. There is no way that the town centre can morph into a fashionable and expensive watering hole, pulling high net worth visitors with an offer of their accustomed lifestyles.

So what does Dunoon do to climb out of economic despond and build a sustainable future.

The obvious answer is, somehow, to build a unique brand playing to its traditional economic focus on tourism. But what might this brand identity be?

What are Dunoon’s advantages?

  • It has the huge conurbation of Inverclyde on its doorstep, served by two ferries shuttling all day, one of them a passenger service from the Gourock railhead right into the linkspan by the pier in the town centre.
  • Its barren urban desert in the area from the linkspan to the Argyll Hotel is effectively open empty space to be assigned a function.
  • Its pier is unique, with two charming Victorian pier buildings screaming carnival – and in a position which makes it the identifier of the town. Pier and presumably buildings are in urgent need of restoration. Argyll and Bute Council has committed to that restoration.
  • The town, on the hills above the town centre, is full of grace, delight and ease.

A prompt can be found in old postcards of the town held at the Castle House Museum, perched atop the very area that principally requires to be addressed.

This area  – the desert on the toes of the Argyll Hotel  was always open – but was a sort of pleasure garden.

It’s still open but its unformed and barren tarmac expanse removes any hint of possible pleasure.

However…

Carnival time

dunoon

Our proposition is to refocus Dunoon – not far from its original purpose – as a permanent carnival town for all ages and for families. Delivering real fun, physical fun, obvious fun. Year round.

The location is the current no man’s land of tarmac desert and the pier, which is alongside it.

The pier is key to nearly everything for Dunoon. Get the pier right and it will signal to the Clyde that Dunoon’s the place for fun, anytime.

So the big job for Dunoon is to get the pier well restored and to give it a focus on fun.

Make a standing year-round carnival of the pier and the tarmac desert.

  • Put brightly painted spectacular wooden swing-boats on the pier – built for adults as well. These shout carnival and would be visible to every ferry coming in to the linkspan.
  • Put a few more judiciously attractive permanent rides on the pier – like dodgems – with hurdy gurdy music [a real pied piper]; and lots of good seating.
  • Convert the area of the former CalMac ferry’s vehicle queuing lines – and as much more as possible – into the rst of the fairground – with achievable but first class rides, treats, visual spectacle and music. [Wikipedia here has a list of amusement rides - have fun finding the right ones.]
  • Make one of the pier buildings an attractive cafe with a limited but first class and always fresh offering.
  • Make the other pier building an indoor amusement place, with the small footprint ‘grab a teddy’ machines for kids and the experiential skills-based simulators – like F1 racing and electronic clay pigeon shooting for everyone.
  • Bring the cafe on the first floor projection of the Queen’s Hall up to good speed. It could not be better placed to service this sort of facility on its doorstep – and provide a dream view of the Clyde.
  • In the summer season, have the bandstand [below] in front of the Argyll Hotel permanently busy – with modern day pierrots – street artists, stilt walkers, fire jugglers, local bands…
  • Accept that there will not be a town centre vehicle ferry – because it is unnecessary – and lay out the area for vehicle queuing lanes at the linkspan into a spatially well organised car park.
  • Dump the portacabins and put passenger facilities on the breakwater.

This creates an instant identity for Dunoon – as lighthearted playtime for kids and adults alike – any time of the year, day and into the evening. Support this with great coffee, great fast food and great ice cream. Home and dry.

Dunoon B16

Add another element to back up the immediately alternative pleasures of Castle House Museum and Gardens – urban walks.

Create a series of walks around the ‘other’ Dunoon – the tranquil, hugely attractive residential areas, with attractive public buildings. Create each walk with the single objective of making everyone love Dunoon. Choose appealing routes with snatches of enticing vistas over the town and the Clyde, with a variety of attractive buildings. Some, like the churches and the museum itself, are open to the public. Some have hidden local history. Provide high quality information on each walk, with  notes on buildings, precincts and retail opportunities. Make sure every walk passes a cafe – people like to stop for a sit down a coffee and a think – and make sure the cafes are first class.

The side benefits

dunoon

The permanent carnival plan achieves a range of other benefits – just like that.

  • The passenger ferry from the Gourock railhead and Inverclyde acquires another specific market – bringing in funseekers to Dunoon, as opposed to ferrying commuters and local shoppers out.
  • The town’s cinema has an expanded market, with the passenger ferry a powerful partner in supporting the exploitation of that market.
  • There is an existing play facility on the coast beyond the linkspan [above] that is suddenly at home.
  • Castle House Museum and its gorgeous gardens are on site, offering alternative attractions.
  • The tacky Queen’s Hall immediately fits in with the ‘fun’ ethos [just maintain it properly] and the first floor cafe it hosts comes fully into its own.
  • The main street, with its rat-run, low-profile gunslinger physicality, fits in too. [Just shoot those awful kitschy railings.]
  • The town centre’s non-existent relationship with the Clyde becomes irrelevant The standing carnival, the focus for visitors and residents alike – providing entertainment not available anywhere else in Argyll or Inverclyde – creates a new relationship with the water from the passenger ferry inwards.

Associated works

There would be bits and pieces to be done to make the town more attractive, functioning better and safer.

Much of this is down to the responsibility and commercial vitality of business owners to refresh, refocus, upgrade and change their businesses as necessary – and to maintain their properties well.

The rest is for the council:

  • to strip out the physical clutter that bedevils Dunoon – remove as many vertical posts as possible: think multi-purpose. A lamp post can be fitted with a collared set of directional town signposts; a collared fitting for flower baskets; and a braced side-fitting to carry standards for major civic events.
  • to remove the awful sections of kitsch railing in the main street. Apart from their visual gimcrackery, these have the capacity to catch and rip clothing; and, worse, they are a safety hazard where someone [guilty] darts across the road in the face of oncoming traffic – and finds these long barriers obstructing immediate safe escape to the pavement.
  • to consider clearing out the ‘traffic calming’, space hungry kerbed projections into the main street, leaving a clean geometry to the street. There is little point pedestrianising the main street since so few of the shops are worth visitors time. A new market has the capacity to change this  but pedestrianisation should follow need. One way traffic should only be ‘through traffic’ with ‘low speed’ lollipops at the Argyll Hotel end entrance; no waiting whatsoever, apart from given early and evening hours allocated for deliveries.

One development is for Police Scotland, in concert with the local authority: a serious Zero Tolerance stance on Dunoon’s crime scenario. The town has been harmed by the influx of known crime families from Clydebank – and any family oriented town cannot afford this to any degree whatsoever.

dunoon

The photographs accompanying this final article in the ‘Looking at Dunoon’ series are designed to show the intriguing and beguiling aspects of the schizophrenic town centre – there to  be protected, maintained, highlighted. perhaps given new and appropriate commercial identities.

dunoon

The nooks and crannies, the sweeping little side street, the hidden gems like the little private garden above – actually on the main street – have much to offer if played to with imagination.

Dunoon 45

Dunoon does have hope and chances.

Who doesn’t want to see it take them; and who wouldn’t be whizzing off for an afternoon or a night on the rides, on the pier?

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40 Responses to Looking at Dunoon: where next?

  1. I have commented on here before and also in the local paper about the local tourist industry ignoring the day tripper market in favour of the coach holidays. These have gone out of favour over the past few years. I understand that pensioners often spent the interest on their savings on such trips. Now interest is so low they do not bother.

    Good suggestions for change in the main Newsie, however, a couple of further suggestions.

    There is supposed to be several millions lying in a Council account to pay for filling in under the pier with stone/gravel. This should be done and the enclosed area of water developed into a marina type mooring place like the one in Rothesay. (£6 for 4 hours during the day and £15 for an overnight stay). Showers and toilets would have to be built of course.

    Argyll St. should be blocked off halfway along to get rid of the rat run. For the sake of the shops the maximum number of short term parking spaces should be provided.

    I think there would be some resistance to the permenant fairground on the grounds of noise.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 4

  2. For those that believe in the future of Argyll & Bute as a viable entity, could the local economy elsewhere, as well as in Dunoon, be revitalised by investing in the incremental extension of the Glasgow – Gourock train service?
    Beneath the Clyde to a town centre station somewhere near the Queen’s Hall, then surface south of Dunoon to run down the coast past Innellan before diving subsea again to serve Rothesay, and then run up the shore to Rhubodach, swing west under the Kyles to Tighnabruaich and turn north roughly following the B8000 then swing west to dive under Loch Fyne at Otter Ferry to surface at Castleton before terminating at Lochgilphead.
    Pie in the sky? – or a prudent phased investment that would pay for itself handsomely in terms of boosting the economy of a large swathe of the country, drastically reducing travel times and safeguarding against unpredictable disruption by storm, landslide and blizzard.
    ‘Can’t be done’, I hear them chorus – but is that because we’re in Scotland?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 7

        • Return. But for whom?

          If you open up those areas to development (and I would say that that would have to be a quid pro quo) then a handful of existing landowners benefit. The rest of us continue to pay them exorbitant prices for plots of ground, previously (and in fact, stiil) worthless but in aggregate suddenly worth a Euromillions jackpot at the magical stroke of a planner’s pen.

          I’m all for opening up Scotland to widespread development but we should, as a consequence, have some of the lowest housing costs in the developed world. Neither the mainstream media, our politicians nor the “haves” element of the population will wear that, hooked, as they patently continue to be, on the illusory and entirely spurious benefits of massive house price inflation.

          And once you add rail, rather than road, to the tunnel equation, factor in hundreds of millions rather than tens, vide Glasgow and Edinburgh airports rail links.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

    • I was once informed Furnace.
      I do not think the fact that someone residing outside Cowal disqualifies them from input, Newsie obviously has a very good grasp of the towns failings and potential.
      Some of the suggestions are refreshing, I only hope local councillors, and community councillors take the time to check the suggestions put forward.
      Unfortunately, not in a long time have I heard anyone in this peninsula with answers or the slightest vision to improve a lifeless town with potentially so much to offer.
      Well done Newsie, and I for one will be running a few of your ideas to regenerate Dunoon past as many in my travels as possible.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

  3. I’m sorry to be negative whilst proposing no magic bullet alternative but tourism, the “traditional economic focus”, is a non starter.

    Think Ayr, Prestwick, Troon, Saltcoats, West Kilbride, Largs and, not least, Millport and Rothesay. The doon the watter holiday is no more, no significant holiday trade has replaced it nor ever shall, and of these, only Largs still has a strong day tripper trade. But even Largs is mainly a commuter suburb and retirement town, as it always was. And I’m sure many of the douce burghers of Largs would happily see the town forego the pennies of the day trippers at that.

    Commuting, retirement. Make it nice, That’s about it. Oh, and second homes for city dwellers on the Scandiwegian model; something which seems to be deeply frowned upon in cooncils and in Scottish political circles, being as it’s apparently akin to taking bread from the mouths of orphans (in the second least densely built upon country in north west Europe …?).

    In other words, no change in direction is really required, just do what you do much better.

    Incidentally, how far would the millions frittered away on the new linkspan, not forgetting council officials’ time and focus, have gone towards cleaning up the eysores highlighted by FA? I’d guess that you could have done the whole cleanup and there would still have been quite a few million left over to pay for the zero tolerance policing the article calls for. Spent now. Pity about that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 4

    • Why would folk from Largs not want day trippers? Without them 1/2 the restaurants and pubs would close. One area that has helped is the marina which has brought in out of towners for a few days or so. Mind you Morrisons seems to make good business as they stock up on their goods. The marina at Sandbank is it 1/2 finished or 1/2 started?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

  4. Seems a good use of the area Newsroom. If it was developed it would be the only attraction like this on the Clyde coast. The area between the vehicular and passenger piers would be ideal if filled in and covered, thus leaving the existing buildings for cafés and associated eateries and shops. When they demolished the old pavilion years ago, this left Dunoon with no indoor amusements especially in wet weather. Remember the site of the current crazy golf used to have dodgems, helter skelter, other rides, and the usual sideshows. Nobody has come up with any better idea, other than business units! What the town needs is entertainment, especially in wet weather.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

    • Absolutely. Making the shoreside part of the operation a covered facility is a great idea – would offer a fun challenge to architects on what it might look like.
      And what about an annual unique cycle race in the town, using the steep little streets up the hill for climbs and downhills; and using the horizontal roads at all levels – threading the town and away out to Innellan or Toward.
      There will be cycling buffs in the town who could design a cracker of an event. Seriously decent prize money from a sponsor and some big names for the inaugural event would give Dunoon’s film, television and media contacts leverage to crank up interest within that sector. Television coverage chasing the route and at vantage points would show off the town’s strengths and make it a visiting option.
      But it would be a mistake to do this prematurely – not until the town’s offer to visitors is capable of living up to the expectations this sort of event and this sort of media attention could raise.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

  5. Could you build a band stand in castle gardens and use the natural curve of the road down from museum to build a seated area and use it for outdoor concerts, might be able to have it covered by a roof that looks like a sail.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

  6. Day trippers provide regular and potentially year round income.

    Refurbish the pier and those iconic buildings and offer it or part of it to Nardinis on an initial rent free basis.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 4

  7. Newsie, “Make a standing year-round carnival of the pier” – this is joke right?

    Your answer to Dunoon is to try to coax/persuade/cajole some numpty private investor to lose a shed load of cash by installing “wooden swings”, “hurdy gurdy” and dodgems???

    Even by your poor standards this is pretty pathetic. Ask yourself this – would you travel to Dunoon because it had wooden swings, a hurdy-gurdy and dodgems????

    Wooden swings???? Just how old are you Newsie?? These ‘ideas’ are simplistic nonsense. A year round carnival town – just what you need when the rain is hissing down over the dreich winter. That’ll bring the crowds flocking back, they’ll be queuing up to get on the ferry at Gourock so that they can get a shot on the ‘wooden swings’.

    Complete utter nonsense of course – beaten only by ‘Wakeham’s wanderings’ about a tunnel from Gourock to Lochgilhead via Dunoon Rothesay, Timbuctoo, Tighnabruaich and Otter Ferry. “think of the return on investment” Aye right!

    Is it a full moon tonight?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 18 Thumb down 6

    • Ever the cynic, Simon. What do you see as the future for urban centres like Dunoon, Rothesay and Campbeltown that were oriented to the development of sea transport and have now been left to a very noticeable extent ‘high and dry’ ?
      Nice new houses might replace some of the dereliction, but it’s surely the relative isolation that has to be faced up to, if there aren’t to be substantial and intractable pockets of urban deprivation, and if you have the foresight you might realise the mind-boggling long term cost of that.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 5

      • Your “high and dry” comment is spot on. The world has moved on from the old steamer days, but some cling on to this vision of hope that the day trippers will come back and spend their money. Well, we went to Dunoon recently on the passenger ferry and we are not likely to make a return visit any time soon. It was a beautiful evening and we looked for a welcoming restaurant in vain, so like most of the others we just went to the chippy and headed back to the ferry.
        Your train tunnels idea may suit some, but most people live their lives around their cars and for this reason I see a greater need for road tunnels. There has to be a major re-think about Scotland’s travel systems, there is so much unnecessary mileage with the associated waste of fuel and the environmental impact. The government talk about renewable energy figures and have road systems that treble journey lengths.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

    • The wooden swingboats suggested are a matter of aesthetics and brand.
      The pier is a traditional gem, unique joyful – and wooden.
      Local artists might each design one. This would make them even more unique – as well as being fun to be in.
      This would promote the creative community in Cowal – which is extensive – and link to Cowal Open Studios, another organic benefit.
      The traditional answer to Dunoon is to throw cheap tat at it.
      It would be quite mad to stick fibreglass swingboats on a pier restored to the wonder it will be – but if that floats your boat, Simon…
      Dunoon can do almost nothing to recover the quality of what has been lost or to replace the junk it’s been given. This proposed solution has made its strategy and criteria clear and rests on them. This proposition is that Dunoon can ADD quality through this initiative, not suffer another short term cheapo.
      Maintenance is the foundation of quality and it is the failure to maintain – in both public and private sectors – that has largely brought Dunoon to where it is today.
      So yes, wooden swingboats would need maintenance – but they would proclaim the Dunoon brand from the spectacular wooden pier – and they would be a delight.
      You seem to be conditioned to believe that Dunoon cannot be delightful. We disagree.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 7

      • Newsie, you are one severely deluded fantasist if you think for one moment your ‘re-generation suggestion’ has any basis in reality.

        The world has moved on from this failed sea-side market model of the 60s and 70s. We live in a digital age, and in an age where air travel and good weather is relatively accessible for most people. And your answer to compete with that is “brightly painted wooden swings – for adults as well”.

        Mallorca, Algarve, Nice, Sharm El Sheikh etc, will be quaking in their boots: they might have endless sunshine, banana boats, jet-skis, kite-boarding, wall-to-wall restaurants, bars and clubs – BUT THEY DON’T HAVE WOODEN SWINGS!!

        You are either on a fishing expedition, a numpty or a bit of both. Have a nice day :)

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 17 Thumb down 5

  8. I hail the ideas offered for the ‘maintenance’, as much as any idea of ‘regeneration’ of Dunoon. It is a gem of a place, yet desperately sad now.

    But this is where we are and where we must start from; the suggestions offer hope, an item in short enough supply. Robert Wakeham’s way out ideas on a new vision of transport are also welcome, because, whatever is done to the poor old (but still delightful) A83, Argyll is pretty much an effort to access. The whole of the Clyde estuary needs a vision, and a transport strategy is key to that: let’s work on it!:

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  9. To Simon, and others – yes, constructive criticism should be welcomed, but exactly what are your ideas for The Pier? English seaside piers are enjoying a boom, with, yes, dodgems and fairground rides! Please let us all see your great ideas for the area. At least Newsroom has suggested something.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

  10. I think Simon et al are missing the point. The days of the Doon the Watter week in a hotel or rented house are pretty much passed although the holiday let side is surviving. Days out are still in vogue but need different facilities and attractions.

    Dunoon has never, as far as I am ware, ever tried to attract day trippers perhaps things will be different when the BID23 manager is appointed.

    Yachtsmen (& women) have been totally ignored as a source of visitors save for Sandbank Marina which is well out of the town.

    The wooden pier cannot be repaired as the greenheart teak is no longer available so it has to be underfilled with masonry as has the pier at Rothesay.

    There are activities from pony trekking to quad bikes available and both are on bus routes. The area is awash with WWII sites and history but few information boards.

    Several years ago the forest tracks above the town were host to a car rally. The same network of paths could equally be promoted for mountain biking. The views are spectacular.

    It seems to me that there many possibilities here but I also have a problem with the chair-o-planes whatever they are made of.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

    • Jim B: point of fact – greenheart isn’t teak, and it is still available (although I imagine it’s very expensive, given its high strength & durability in marine structures).
      So ‘underfilling with masonry’ is not inevitable, and historic piers can be repaired or rebuilt without destroying their character, if the work is adequately funded and competently managed.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  11. Actually JimB I don’t think I’m missing the point at all but thank you very much all the same.

    Newsie article and her ‘suggestions’ emanate from an individual who reckons she has the answer to everything and is arrogant enough to publish it. (talking of arrogance she now uses the Royal ‘we’ in some article…)

    The days of mass doon the watter tourism are truly gone. People are much more mobile than they were 40/50 years ago and have higher aspirations for their fortnight’s holiday.

    I was in Millport recently – all faded grandeur with shops closed, charity shops, and rather sad looking crazy golf and bouncy castle set up. And they do have moorings for yachts and two Cal Mac car ferries servicing their travel needs

    I do however agree that there should be facilities for yachts in and that there should be better information on the sites around the town. I’ve cycled from Dunoon to Innellan/Toward along the hills and they too deserve better publicity. I’ve also walked the same hills on a circular trip from Dunoon towards Toward – cut-off over the MoD property to Inverchaolain Church and from there over the Coffin Trail and back to Dunoon via more Forestry roads. I never saw this high level walk advertised just worked it out myself from OS maps.

    So like you I think there are alternatives to Newsie’s dystopian vision of ‘painted wooden swings for adults’ as a means of attracting visitors to Dunoon and to Cowal. Better info, more activity offerings, (the recently announced Kayak Trail will have bases at Dunoon and Toward) and better customer service. I travelled to see the Film Festival and apart from technical hiccups the festival was really good and it was different. The hotels and B&Bs could probably do more to attract independent travellers and activity seekers but that’s their choice and their business.

    The truth is of course that there is no one answer to the problems of a declining sea-side holiday town that both time and customers have passed by, And whilst I’m all for debate, simplistic solutions like the nonsense spouted by Newsie in the article above are just that, simplistic. Certainly not worthy of serious consideration and it will never happen in a million years as no private investor is quite as daft as Newsie is.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 3

  12. Dunoon receives 2400mm of rain per year. This may have something to do with the loss of tourism dollars. Today’s tourists look for sunny places to spend time & money.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

    • Not sure that that’s true. Annual rainfall is very much affected by local topography around here and how the hills affect the moisture laden prevailing winds.

      A weather station at Benmore, NOT Dunoon, reportedly gets 2400mm per year, making it wetter by far than “wet” Fort William which has 1900mm (but which in turn is very close to areas regarded as having the highest rainfall in Scotland at over 4000mm).

      Notoriously wet Greenock, almost the same distance away from Dunoon as Benmore, also gets about 1900mm whilst Paisley gets only 1200mm. I suspect Dunoon gets something closer to those two but there’s no local weather station to give a precise figure, apparently.

      Arran gets between 1500mm and 2550mm depending on location but the “tourist dollars” continue to roll in quite nicely.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

      • I remember my geography teacher at Dunoon Grammar School, Mr Cannon, telling us that there was a weather station at Ardenslate which measured the annual rainfall in Dunoon at 80 inches. When the houses were built it was discontinued and they took the readings from Benmore. The average there was 90 inches per year.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  13. PM – The western highlands in Scotland are among the wettest areas in Europe – 4557mm/180″/15 feet a year. By contrast the eastern side of Scotland has less than 870mm per year.

    So while Paisley according to you “only gets 1200mm” that’s still almost 50% higher than eastern Scotland average.

    But even taking your most optimistic figures for rain in Dunoon of between 1200mm and 1900 that’s the equivalent of 4 -6 feet of rain every year. And the point is that the west of Scotland has a temperate climate that means it’s wet a lot of the time and hardly conducive to a year-round carnival.

    And as an aside if Arran continues to bring in the tourist dollars that’s just as well because its population like Bute and Islay has been falling over the past decade.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6

  14. Sitting in a rather nice restaurant in Manchester on a wet Thursday evening my thoughts turned to Dunoon.

    Opposite was a nondescript 1980s building with a shop on the ground floor and several windows in the upper floors which looked as if they had not been cleaned for some time. As I ambled round the centre of this vibrant city to walk off my indulgence my eyes were drawn to the upper floors and empty shops all in a state of distress spoiling the whole experience.

    Like small communities large cities have benefitted from various grant incentives to improve their realm and town centres. What they have been unable to do reverse the contraction of retail shops against the onslaught of supermarket and online shopping attractions.

    While niche activities have created opportunities for some communities like Whithorn, Scotland’s book town, most towns are wallowing in uncertainty.

    Is it not time to break out from this mentality and accept that these grants are of little lasting effect. Instead owners of property must be told in no uncertain way that with ownership comes responsibility. Owners of commercial properties must be forced to keep their properties well maintained and clean. Owners of empty shops must be obliged by law to change their window displays every month.

    If you maintain you properties you should’ve entitled to a reduced rates charge.

    If a place looks spruce people will come and look at it. As a tourist I have been in countless places in Europe which look nice but can’t get a decent coffee or buy a memento of my visit. But thousand every year are still directed and go to these places because they are pleasant.

    Time does not permit a detailed development of this idea by me but surely it’s worth a consideration with an appeal to the Scottish government and Parliament to bring forward a Dunoon regeneration Act based on the parable of the talents. The Act could have a sunset clause to establish if it could be made nationwide or was a failure borne of a diluted old man supping too much vino.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  15. And still nobody has come up with any brilliant regeneration ideas for Dunoon. There must be some good ideas out there? I am sure that someone on here quoted something around £10.000 annual rent for the Argyll Street old Victoria Wine shop, some months ago. That is a huge amount to have to make in profits, just to pay a rent.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

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