Councillors pave the way for sponsored street names

STREETS IN MORAY could soon be sporting familiar business names if the local council have their wish to raise much needed funding by ‘selling’ the rights.

The issue was discussed yesterday at the planning and regulatory services committee when revised policies and procedures were discussed on the future naming and numbering of streets in the region.

Committee members were advised that the naming of a street or bridge could present the local authority with a fundraising opportunity through commercial sponsorship. The idea being proposed is that companies might pay for a name of their choice – although it would still need to comply with general principles and be approved by Councillors.

Jim Grant, head of development services, told members that while sponsorship opportunities would likely be limited, any additional income generated would be welcomed given the current financial situation being faced.

He said: “Sponsorship payments may vary but it is thought that those of commercial interest could achieve a payment of £20,000.

“I am particularly thinking of distilleries and things like that – long-standing industries that may wish locations close to them being named after them.

“I think it unlikely to come about very often – but I think it is worth having in the policy to allow us to do that.”

Committee member and councillor for Fochabers/Lhanbryde, David Bremner, said it was a good idea and an example of “somebody in the council thinking outside the box”, adding: “It is important that elected members retain the final say though before anything changes.”

The committee approved the idea should be added to the policy and procedures, paving the way for future discussion and agreements with suitable business interests.