Your View: Economy, Efficiency and Rural Sustainability

In the first of our ‘your view counts’ series, Timothy Eagle returns to insideMoray to pose a few questions on matters that should be important in all our communities……

The centre of an historic, diverse mix of urban and rural communities.

DID YOU RESPOND to the Moray Council Budget consultation? Great if you did. It is important.

National governments make national policies but local government enact them, it is local government which has the most effect on our lives, and they are in trouble!

Moray council is facing some of the biggest cuts it has ever faced, it will affect you and me. There is a question in my mind that has been going round and round for a while now which regards the destruction of the very thing that makes Scotland (and within that Moray) the great thing it is.

That is how all these cuts and the increasing political drive for efficiency will affect the very core of what Scotland is, its culture and community!

Moray is a great example of this, it has a larger urban centre in Elgin filled with a diverse range of businesses and people but Moray also has an environmentally diverse landscape filled with tiny villages, larger towns and everything in between. They are our communities.

My kids go to Portessie primary school. It is a smaller school, some will see it as just that a small inefficient school. My question is, is it?

The school’s primary function is to teach our children but in any given community it does much more than that. I have seen grownups and children alike cry and laugh in the school playground. I have seen relationships form and blossom. I have seen discussions on local community problems and discussion on the need to support vulnerable members of them.

In light of a history of closing libraries, local shops and post offices these last few community locations, especially in smaller areas, are a focal point for maintaining what we understand to be community.

So I ask this question, at what point do the national government ask themselves how striving towards economic efficiency will maintain rural and even urban sustainability.

At what point do you realise that whilst it is theoretically possible to save money by merging hospitals, schools and more to do so would be to undermine the very heart of what Scotland is. A rich and diverse landscape full of the most beautiful villages lived in by some of the most welcoming, community engaging people.

Without places of social contact in villages and alike we live in fear of communities fading away, we surely must protect them. After all schools and the like are key indicators of community vitality and sustainability.

In all this talk of independence I can’t help wondering what it is all for if we continue on a quest to destroy our local community. It is easy to say there is no money in the pot, it is harder to look in depth at the bureaucratic, red taped, target driven nightmare that many of our public and private industries have become and work towards what could be a life-saving plan to bring strength and hope to our government, our community and the people.

I would argue we need to resolve our differences and move away from party political divisiveness and oneupmanship to work towards a nation where no matter what side of the fence your on we can work together for a positive future not just for our spiralling cities but for us all.

God bless Moray and all the new councillors that come in this year, because without some radical rethinking by our national governments we could all face pain.

Got a point or two to make? You can do so through ‘Your View’, where you set the agenda in between 300 and 1000 words – send your submission to