Drive to coordinate community funding bids to enhance rich heritage of Peterhead

A drive to coordinate external funding bids which will enhance and develop Peterhead’s architectural heritage is being spearheaded by Aberdeenshire Council.

Taking forward the Peterhead Regeneration Action Plan, the local authority is encouraging the community to form a collective view towards making joined-up bids for funding for proposed heritage and built environment work within Peterhead, which should bring a range of socio-economic benefits.

Breathing new life into vacant historic properties to support heritage-led regeneration and transformation of the town centre has previously been expressed as a priority by the Peterhead Development Partnership, the Buchan Area Committee, the Choose Peterhead community charrette, Peterhead Community Council, and the Invest in Peterhead group.

Invited community groups and other stakeholders will be attending a discussion session on Thursday, February 20, which will be followed by a public drop-in session.

This forum will feature representatives that have a strong interest in the initiative and will be hosted by Community Enterprise Ltd, which has been specially-commissioned to co-ordinate funding applications.

The drop-in will be held in the New Parish Church Committee Room on Prince Street between 2-6pm and Community Enterprise will make themselves available to the general public.

They will also host one-to-one ‘surgery sessions’ as part of the consultation process, which will include a review of the town centre’s Conservation Area management.
Chair of the Peterhead Development Partnership, Councillor Stephen Smith said: “This important heritage-based initiative has been in development over the past year and this consultation process is another important step towards forming a robust bids process for external funding.”

Chair of the Council’s Buchan Area Committee, Councillor Norman Smith, added: “Since competition for such funding is increasing all the time, it is vital that Peterhead develops a very strong case, so I urge people to again demonstrate their community spirit and take the time to engage with the process and convey opinion on how we can best achieve this overall goal.”

The Peterhead Regeneration Vision and Action Plan 2016-21 is approximately halfway through its adopted period. The Action Plan is taken forward and monitored by the Peterhead Development Partnership (PDP), involving delivery of actions and activities by multiple public sector, business and community organisations. Key partners include Peterhead Community Council, Rediscover Peterhead, Scottish Week, Light Up Peterhead, and Theatre Modo.

The Peterhead Conservation Area covers the historic core of the town and this aspect, particularly its central spine running from the Muckle Kirk at Errol Street through to and including Broad Street, will be the main focus of this project. A Conservation Area Appraisal carried out in 2005 set out a management strategy for the Conservation Area and this is currently being updated.

The ‘Choose Peterhead’ study (2016) was a community-led exercise that used a range of public participation techniques to develop a town centre development plan with a range of short, medium and long term projects. This proposed project will take forward a number of these community aspirations and especially develop the ‘community heritage’ interest, with particular focus on key properties and sites.