|IT'S NEARLY CHRISTMAS
As ever, Wintertainment earlier this month was a great Troon event. It was great to see so many people welcoming Santa's arrival, then lining the streets for the parade. Then it was time for some local Christmas shopping in town, and the cafes, restaurants and tearooms did a roaring trade. I'd like to say a word of thanks to Troon Community Council's Activity Team for again staging an excellent event - well done. I'd like to remind us all that it's important for the survival of our local shops, that we all try to ensure that some of our own Christmas shopping is done in Troon. We are now coming into the festive concerts season in our schools, and it's great to see our young people performing so well. With our Christmas Street lights now up, and the tree now in place at the Town Hall, Christmas really is just around the corner, but already the Council is looking ahead, as evidenced by the recent planning of winter bulbs in front on the library.
In Council land, I attended the Remembrance Service in the Auld Kirk in Ayr, then joined the parade to the Cenotaph in Wellington Square. It was a beautiful sunny day, and it was great to see so many people lining the streets. It seems that the Remembrance Services in our towns and villages all had excellent turnouts, which is great. I then had the pleasure of again attending the Auld Kirk, this time for the presentation ceremony granting the Honorary Freedom of South Ayrshire to the Royal Regiment of Scotland, and to welcome home the officers and soldiers of the Royal Highland Fusiliers 2nd Battalion from their 3rd operational tour of Afghanistan. It was great to see the soldiers march through Ayr, and to see the crowds waving their flags and applauding as they marched by.
As a member of the judging panel for the Robert Burns Humanitarian Award, I am presently going through the list of nominations for this award, which will be granted in January at a ceremony in the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum in Ayr.
Also in Council land, we are working on setting the Council budget. This is never an easy or popular task, and it just gets harder as the financial challenges increase. These are tough times, and tough times mean that tough decisions require to be made. This is no different from the reality that faces family budgets - as times get hard, we have to reconsider what we can afford, and cut our cloth accordingly. It's not all doom and gloom though - as I write this, I am off this evening to another opening of one of our refurbished primary schools, having attended another one only a couple of weeks ago. No doubt the children will lay on a wonderful performance for us, and I am looking forward to it.
(Ward 1 - Scottish Conservative & Unionist Party)
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