Does the council plan to move out of town centres?

There is an interesting motion, put forward by two of my independent colleagues, to be debated at this week’s full council meeting. It seeks an assurance from Highland Council to retain offices in our city and town centres as a clear commitment to their economic success. It comes as the council considers a rationalisation of its various office premises across the Highlands. Although on paper moving staff out of town centre premises may result in cost-savings it would also remove hundreds of people that use the shops around them. The potential economic costs on the wider community could be enormous. We need to look at the future of our town centres, in particular Fort William, as a whole rather than in a piecemeal way. We need a long-term vision for our High Street, which considers all the factors that affects it future. Alas, such a joined-up approach seems to be ignored when it comes to some of my Lochaber colleagues.

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