Thursday, 30 October 2014

Figures of Light

Planners together - Sarah Boyack (left) and Henry McLeish (right)
Planners together
Sarah Boyack and Henry McLeish
You know, I felt so proud this week when I heard that Sarah Boyack MSP had thrown her hat in the ring and announced her candidacy for the Leadership of the Labour Party Branch Office in Scotland. As we expert planners will know, Sarah like us is a town planner, as was Henry McLeish, Scotland's second First Minister, famous for a pigs-in-the-trough incident that blotted his copybook. I recall that the Sunday Herald encouraged him to 'rent in peace' after his resignation. That incident gave planning the highest possible profile and that was terrific for the profession! Wasn't it?

You see, every planner has an inner desire to make the most of every situation - a drive to shake off the shackles of convention and rise above the humdrum. It's part of the expert planner's DNA and perfectly natural for someone like Sarah Boyack, who probably has very few talents other than planning, to aspire to lead the Labour Party Branch Office in Scotland, to enjoy the cut and thrust of First Minister's Questions and ultimately to become First Minister.

As an expert planner I do hope that Sarah Boyack rises to the top table and is successful in her latest venture. It will be an incredible boost for RTPI Scotland and will genuinely give them something worthwhile to boast about.

It's one of the great things about the society in which we live that people, and indeed companies, organisations, architects and planners with absolutely no skills or talent can prosper and grow in the modern Scotland.  You know, I've heard it said that leadership figures simply emerge through being understood and respected as 'figures of light'. People who have a kind of 'forcefield' around them. We've seen many in Scotland in recent years and they have all shared this incredible charisma - Jack McConnell, Wendy Alexander, Iain Gray and Johann Lamont to name but a few. I'm absolutely certain that Sarah Boyack will fit like a glove into this panoply of brilliant people that Scotland looks up to.

Best wishes from Auchterness! I'll be back soon so cheeriebye for now.

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