Town merits new ‘voice’ to reflect its growing status

The growth of Ellon over the period I have lived in the town has been nothing short of explosive, making for a very different requirement in respect of leadership from the days of the 1970s when it was pretty cosy, and therefore easy to manage.

When I first came to the town just a few months shy of 40 years ago the population was just over 2,500.

This is in sharp contrast to the 11,000 who now habit the town.

The administration was generally good, though many at the time deprecated the loss of its provost, giving as they imagined the town a status it no longer enjoys.

At the time I thought little of the loss, indeed like most I saw the position as an expensive luxury, serving no useful purpose in the great scheme of local government.

We have, in fact, been without such a post for nigh on 40 years, and you might say survived quite well thank you, or so we like to think, or been led to believe.

My new take on the situation is, however, slightly different, as I now can see a case for more dynamic leadership in a town which has grown like topsy since losing the position of a civic leader in the shape of a provost.

Currently we have four Aberdeenshire councillors who serve the town well enough, though none of them are designated the kind of social remit that I believe Ellon’s new status demands.

Similarly Ellon Community Council does not enjoy the type of remit I am thinking of, more rightly concerned with keeping its collective eye on the many planning issues that come before them.

No, the time has come to at least talk about a position that oversees the social calendar of this rapidly growing area, giving us the kind of status that would be of long-term benefit, putting us on the map on both the local and national scene.

The logistics I leave to those who would be responsible for the administration of the position, though this could be a small committee, comprising serving Aberdeenshire councillors and representatives from the community.

It would by necessity be an elected position to be filled every four years, though not a political position, we have enough of them.

No, this would be a social position, but an important one in the continuing growth of Ellon.

Interestingly, I am not the only person to be thinking along these lines.

A number of individuals living in the town have raised it with me, which is partly why I have chosen to go into print, neither is it a slight on any of the existing councillors from either the ranks of Aberdeenshire, or the local community council.

They have quite enough on their plates without taking on additional responsibilities.