I'm backing plans to revive Musselburgh town centre, and I am urging the public to have their say on long-awaited proposals from East Lothian Council.
The strategy was drawn up following comments from 1,200 members of the community two years ago. It aims to make the High Street and surrounding areas more vibrant, attracting businesses, creating public spaces including a town square, and making more of the Honest Toun's historic features.
Last summer during a visit to Musselburgh I spoke with local activists and planners about these exciting proposals. It's a shame it's taken so long for them to come forward for public comment, and I'd urge everyone to take a look and make their views known.
Musselburgh is far too often overlooked yet it has huge potential. It's regrettable that planning permission was given for a 24 hour supermarket on the doorstep of the High Street and its effect is plain to see. The priority for our town centres should be local, independent shops and community spaces so that people enjoy a walk down the High Street and spend money in a way that genuinely benefits local people and businesses.
Vehicle congestion and air pollution are big issues. It's appalling at peak times with half the traffic simply passing through. If we want Musselburgh town centre to be a pleasant place to spend time, walk and cycle around we should be looking at ways to reduce the traffic.