Eyemouth residents have put together a vision of what needs done to improve the town and with its ever increasing reliance on tourism, new visitor signs are a good place to start.
A group of local people have been working on new Eyemouth signs on the A1 with Councillor Michael Cook and Scottish Borders Council officials and agreement has finally been reached. All they need now is to find the £2000 for the new brown visitor signs explaining what the historic port has to offer.
The new signs will be the first visible evidence of the work going on behind the scenes to give Eyemouth a boost.
Barbara Prater, chairman of Eyemouth Community Council, said: “It’s a huge step forward.
“The Vision group are moving forward with ideas which will make the town a better place but the ideas that we are moving forward to achieve are the ideas offered by the people who came to the consultation meetings earlier this year as well as the ideas which the original group had.”
All those ideas have now been correlated and put into a series of categories and follow up events are taking place this Friday, September 26, from 5.30-7.30pm and Saturday from 11am-1pm, in the Hippodrome (former Fishermen’s Mission) on Harbour Road.
There is a real ground-swell of enthusiasm about Eyemouth’s potential and Scottish Borders Council has commissioned a draft plan for how the Harbour Road area could be developed in the future.
Local architect Alan Swan drew up a radical long-term plan for the area, moving the fishing over to the Gunsgreen side of the harbour leaving Harbour Road for tourism and residential development.
This long term plan would involve a change in emphasis at the old fish market, part of which is occupied by the Maritime Museum run by Eyemouth International Sailing Craft Association (EISCA).
Eyemouth Harbour Trust recently cleared the chill units from the fish market site opening up the area and Berwickshire Maritime Trust are interested in the site around the top end of the harbour where one of EISCA’s many boats ‘Bertha’ currently stands. Bertha is believed to have been designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel and is the oldest operational steam driven vessel in Britain.
However, her current berth on Eyemouth’s Harbour Road was never meant to be permanent and while there are no imminent plans to move her she will be moved from there eventually.
Now it’s a case of putting together all the ideas for Eyemouth that have been put forward and working out what will be possible and in what order to focus on the different elements.
“It’s a fresh vision for Eyemouth, now we have to work on the community ideas and bringing those ambitions to life,” added Barbara.
Alan Swan is confident about the town’s future: “The interest in building a better future for Eyemouth is palpable and is reflected in the vigorous revival of organisations such as the town council, the Chamber of Trade and the establishment of new organisations such as Eyemouth Initiative.”