The Miners Welfare was packed out last night as 100 local people, businesses and organisations came along to celebrate the official launch of “Blantyre Community Action Plan“. What a brilliant night it was.
Hosts ‘Coalfields Regeneration Trust’ and action group ‘Blantyre Futures‘ were delighted to host the collaborative launch event which included attendance from Councillors, Fire Services, Police Scotland, the Council and residents of all ages. Organisers were thrilled to see so many young people taking an interest in an engaging manner.
The audience heard from 5 local groups who were previously chosen by the public to receive funding and were given some background on the public consultation which took place over many months. Now in their 10th month, the Steering group is now in the process of evolving into a non profit, community led action group called ‘Blantyre Futures‘, with many of their volunteers attending the launch.
Visitors heard a rousing speech from Elizabeth Freer on behalf of Blantyre Futures, showcasing the launch of 5 major themes, each uniquely chosen by the public. First announced on a new website on 1st June, these were last night made available to the public offline and will be focused on over the next 5 years. Each area of public concern or suggestion with a view on improving all aspects of community life will now be focused on with potential for more groups to be created.
The audience heard about the wonderful community groups currently active in Blantyre and what a difference each is making and how such efforts only compliment and add to what is trying to be achieved. It was great to see so many local representatives of these stakeholder organisations at the launch.
Coalfields closing speech told of the success of the Blantyre Consultation, with over 1500 local residents opinions collected and prioritised, a figure around 8.5% of all of Blantyre! Further successes were outlined, particularly noting excellent attendance of 3 events and 18 meetings, surpassing over 40 other areas they’ve been involved with, a new record for them! The event ended with the distribution of the actual action plan and appreciative comments about how this was very much the start of an exciting future and of the potential ahead, especially for unlocking funding.
Blantyre Futures Facebook page is now up and running here:
https://www.facebook.com/blantyrefutures with a launch planned in due course. The Community Action plan will be freely available to download from their page and website later in the week.