Stranraer councillor slams council colleagues for lack of waterfront support

Stranraer and North RhinsMarion McCutcheon
Stranraer and North RhinsMarion McCutcheon

LABOUR councillor for Stranraer and North Rhins, Marion McCutcheon, has hit out at Tory, SNP and non-aligned councilors for refusing to back Labour’s calls to lobby the Scottish Government to return the Stranraer Waterfront to a national priority.

Under the Labour-led Scottish Executive, the regeneration of Stranraer waterfront was categorised as a ‘national priority’ and they had agreed in principle to allocate £8 million of funding. However, in April 2008 the SNP Government downgraded the waterfront project to a ‘local priority’, which meant the £8 million was no longer available and responsibility transferred to the Council.

At a meeting of full council on Thursday, Labour called on all councilors to back proposals for the Council to write to the Scottish Government to demand that the waterfront project be returned to a national priority. However, no other Wigtownshire councilor supported the calls, which meant that the proposal was voted down.

Labour’s councilor for Stranraer and North Rhins, Marion McCutcheon, said: “I am bitterly disappointed that councilors from other parties, independents and non-aligned refused to back Labour’s calls for the waterfront regeneration project to be returned to a national priority. This would have meant the reinstatement of £8 million cash, which would have given the regeneration a massive boost. I am particularly angry that no other local councilors from the Stranraer area supported us. They should be ashamed at walking away from the waterfront regeneration and not fighting for this cash that is rightfully ours.

“Local people have watched as the regeneration in Stranraer has stalled. They are fed up of endless talk, and want to see action and I am furious that they have been let down again.

“Other long standing local councilors need to take some of the responsibility for the decline of our area under their watch, and they will now need to explain why they refused to back Labour’s calls for this £8 million to be reinstated.”