Monday, 21 September 2009

John O' Groats - a retail paradise!

You know, despite the best efforts of the Post Office and their workforce of malcontents and luddites, I received my personal issue of Planning this morning. Part of me is always proud to receive this publication - as a planner you are naturally proud and humbled to be able to serve communities in need - but at the same time I'm really embarrassed to be associated with 'The Journal of the Royal Town Planning Institute'. Dreary articles by self-serving dogsbodies trying to make it up the slippery pole of the Institute hierarchy for the most part. But this week I spotted something that was inspiring and truly original.
the great idea
Apparently a consultancy called GVA Grimly (who I had never heard of before) have announced a masterplan for the redevelopment of John O' Groats - that's right, the most northerly place on Smart Alex's Scottish mainland. You know, working in remote areas like John O' Groats or Auchterness is not easy - private investment is sometimes hard to come by - and so I was absolutely amazed to see that this proposal rests on the idea of John O' Groats becoming a 'destination focal point' - how well that sounds - I'm impressed to say the least! Turning the most remote part of Scotland into a shopping centre is a stroke of genius - I wish I had thought of that.

I must find out who the brain behind this staggering project belongs to. I will call to see if he can help me out in Auchterness. Great stuff - I'll be in touch!


Mary Fisher said...

Dave, thanks for another exciting post. I've never been to John O' Goats, but the idea of improving a town with new shopping malls seems to be great! It's always disturbing for me to go somewhere where they don't have an ASDA supermarket. I think that people will always enjoy shopping - so towns with enough shops will always be busy.

Dave Thompson said...

Thanaks Mary - how right you are. I just wish I had thought of this simple solution to the problems of our remote areas - every best wishes - Dave