TRANSPORT SCOTLAND HAS rejected a compromise plea by Aberlour business owners over the extensive road works being undertaken through the tourist season.
It was hoped that a meeting this week between representatives from the roads agency, their agents BEAR Scotland and local business and shop owners would alleviate the situation.
However, following the talks Transport Scotland say that the work will go ahead as planned with completion expected in August – with a spokesman insisting that the “balance of opinion” ruled their decision.
Several shop owners insisted that the long awaited £2million road improvements along the A95 through the village were necessary – but badly timed, coming as they do during the peak tourist season and so having a detrimental effect on their businesses.
Moray’s MSP Richard Lochhead become involved in the row, asking Transport Scotland to look again at their timetable for the work. That led to the meeting this week raising hopes of a compromise – but Keith Murray, who is project manager at Transport Scotland, insisted that the work will continue.
He said: “We do recognise that some people will be disappointed but BEAR Scotland has pledged to do all it can to work with the whole community and spread the message that Aberlour is open for business.”
BEAR Scotland’s Mark Turner added: “We know that some people have concerns about the timetable for the work, but to change that part of the way through would lead to the scheme going into the late summer/winter months, when the worsening weather adds more risk to completing the scheme in a reasonable time.”
Mr Lochhead said that there had been a variety of views on the timing of the works – but general agreement that the road improvements were welcome and necessary, adding: “Aberlour is an important part of Moray’s exceptional tourist industry and I am pleased BEAR Scotland have committed funds to advertising.”