Define and articulate a clear vision for the region and local towns

Define and articulate a vision for the region and the local towns.

Engage the community and local businesses in defining this vision. Listen to their contributions.

Keep the vision simple and easy to communicate but regularly reinforce it.

And then make use of businesses and the community to implement the strategy.

If I take tourism as an example:

- Significant investment has been made in the railway. Funds are approved and allocated for hosting the tapestry and the associated building.

- However, I fear that as a region we may not yet be a position to fully capitalise on these benefits. The missing link is a clear articulation of what we would like the region and towns to be for tourists.

- A small investment of mainly time and potential consultation, engagement, workshops, brainstorming with the community and businesses would help to define what good looks like. 

- Only then can the steps to achieve it and smart investment decisions be made.

- This would give the distinct advantage of having the community and businesses behind the vision and investing in it to make it happen in a a co-ordinated  and collaborative way. 

For example:

- who are we looking to attract?

- how do we attract them?

- what would interest them and what else do we expect they would like to do when they are here?

- how do we get our message out about what we have here? How do we promote the South of Scotland as well as the North is promoted?

- what do we already have? How can we signpost it better? How can we build on this? What else do we need in terms of permanent attractions and temporary events?

- where else has achieved what we are looking to achieve? How did they go about it?  Are there any existing models that we could use. For example,  Dumfries and Galloway seem to have been particularly successful with there tourism and events

- how do tourists get here? Where do they first arrive? Once they are hear how do we make it as simple as possible for them and guide them through the tourist journey we envisage for them?

This may sound condescending or attempting to teach the council to suck eggs. However, as a member of the community, I see a real opportunity for the region, particularly from a tourism perspective, but I am not aware of a clear articulation of the vision or co-ordination of activity that would encourage private and business investment that would generate extra revenue for the region.



Why the contribution is important


- having the community and local businesses to strive towards implementing the vision will be cost effective for the council

- community and local business support in defining the vision will instil more of a sense of individual responsibility, ownership and pride.

- this will help to improve the reputation of the council as a supporter rather than blocker

- important to capitalise on the benefits available from the investments already made and those planned in the near future

- a small investment in the right things will provide a healthy return

by Rgardiner on January 15, 2018 at 09:09PM

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