Cllr Douglas Reid Portrait

Festive message from Councillor Douglas Reid, Leader of East Ayrshire Council

This time of year is inevitably one for reflection, looking back over the past year, while preparing for the New Year to come. And this year is no exception.  As with any year it’s not been without its challenges, but it has also brought many reasons for optimism and recognition of some of the positives which we’ve seen in East Ayrshire.

Working collaboratively across the parties has always been a strength and it was good to see us praised for this in an Audit Scotland report.  This highlighted the effective cross party co-operation which brings such benefits in helping us make decisions and implement programmes and actions which benefit all our communities.

This collaborative approach, which extends to our relationships with our partner organisations across the public and private sector is an increasingly vital approach in the face of such a challenging economic outlook.

There are many national and global forces at work which make life very tough for many people. However with innovative thinking and in consultation with our communities we’re making the most of the resources we have to help provide the most needed services to make sure that no one is left behind.

Our Place Based Investment programme, which is now in its third year of operation, has brought tangible benefits to our local towns and villages. The funding has been well used so far to fulfil the desires and ambitions of local communities to regenerate and shape their own areas in a way that suits them best. The programme has another two years to run and we look forward to seeing more of these community led projects coming to fruition.

For those groups which haven’t had PBIB funding we’ve worked with them to find alternative sources, so many other initiatives are now being brought to fruition too. Together with exciting major projects in the pipeline for our town centres, including the Grand Hall and the Galleon Centre in Kilmarnock and Ayrshire Growth Deal projects throughout East Ayrshire, we have more positive changes on the way.

While so many things are happening throughout the world  that lie beyond our control, it’s good to know that here in East Ayrshire we still have people coming together despite their differences to make the most of our local area, helping build prosperity and wellbeing in these hard times and create better opportunities for the future.

I wish you all the happiest possible Christmas and an optimistic and prosperous New Year.

Douglas Reid, 

Leader, East Ayrshire Council