Ian Yuill

Liberal Democrat councillor for Mannofield, Airyhall, Braeside, Broomhill, Garthdee, Kaimhill and Ruthrieston Learn more

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NEWS RELEASE : Liberal Democrats respond to City Centre and Beach decisions

by Ian Yuill on 12 November, 2021

Aberdeen’s Liberal Democrat councillors have condemned a decision to make major changes at the beach and in the city centre – including excluding buses and cars from central Union Street – despite these proposals being backed by just four councillors at a council committee meeting on Friday 12th November.

Commenting on this, Councillor Ian Yuill, Leader of the Liberal Democrats on Aberdeen City Council, said, “The decisions before the Committee were the most important the Council has faced since I was first elected over 27 years ago. They will affect our city for decades to come. Yet the vast majority of councillors had no say – these proposals were voted for by just four councillors and only passed on the Convener’s casting vote.”

Ian Yuill added, ““Its shameful that the Conservative and Labour councillors proceeded to make this decision after hearing a plea from a representative of the Chair and Vice Chair of Aberdeen’s Disability Equity Partnership for more time to be allowed for people to be consulted about the proposals.

Turning to the proposals for Aberdeen Beach, Ian Yuill said, “The Liberal Democrats remain totally opposed to spending any council funds on building a stadium for Aberdeen FC. We wish Aberdeen FC well but do not believe public money should be used to build a stadium at the Beach for the football club.

In relation to the temporary “Spaces for People” changes in the city centre, Ian Yuill said, “When these changes were introduced, people were told they were a temporary response to the pandemic emergency. Despite that assurance, the Conservative and Labour councillors voted to keep the central part of Union Street closed to all vehicles – including buses. The Liberal Democrats believe that the City Council should have kept its word, removed all the Spaces for People changes and reopened the central part of Union Street to all traffic.”

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   10 Comments

10 Responses

  1. Eleanor Leslie says:

    Dear Ian

    I totally agree with all you have said. I am a taxi driver. If the council would listen to the people of Aberdeen also the disabled and elderly who are absolutely disgusted with 5h3 council.

  2. Aileen In ex says:

    I disagree about Union Street being pedestrianised.
    The Council should think about older people and young and older disabled.
    They say it will bring people to the City.
    If buses took people nearer to Marks & Spencer’s, The Square. People have to visit Opticians. Hospitals and Restaurants, all this should be easy accessible.
    As for eating outside in space from Bridge Street to Market Street. We don’t get the weather here. I have a disabled daughter and know what like it can be without transport. Also for myself. There’s people over 90 travel on the Buses and expect to be taken as near to where they are going. Everybody hasn’t money for Taxis.

  3. D McArthur says:

    It’s shocking that major changes to the city can be approved by only 4 councillors. Why was it not debated at a full council meeting?
    Whilst the council claim to want to regenerate Union Street the current restrictions are driving people away and out of the city centre altogether. Another example of the incompetence is shown by them now closing Broad Street for that pathetic excuse for a Christmas Village when they already have the closed central area of Union Street that could have housed it. So more road closures will further hamper bus routes further discouraging people from using public transport. So much for the environment ehh and during COP?
    Finally the council are descriminating against the disabled or those with limited mobility as they can no access central Union Street due to no public transport being allowed.
    I thought the council should be trying to promote the city, but if your like me it’s easier to go shopping in the suburbs than go into the city centre.

  4. Marie Cruden says:

    I totally agree that public money should not be used to build new football stadium at beach. Also the money spent on beach front should only to modernise what is already there. Street lighting new fence along the prom. Repair sea wall on sea front to protect water damaged areas.
    City centre remove the ugly wooden seats steam clean the pavements. The town centre looks dirty and it is depressing. It all needs modernising especially the shop fronts. There is over 20 empty shops on Union Street. No more shopping centres. As the trinity centre has many empty units. Union Terrace gardens should have been raised to Union street height so it could have been a nice big Square. Keeping people coming into the centre of town. So it didn’t die like it has.

  5. Ian Martin-Beattie says:

    Ian, is there nothing we can do to stop these councillors that seem to ignore the wishes of the people of Aberdeen, and seem to have no idea which initiatives would actually be beneficial for Aberdeen, and which are worthy of the investment of public funding?

  6. Eileen Leslie says:

    Have the four councillors who voted to pedestrianise Union Street ever gone down to Guild Street to see the chaos caused by all the buses having to travel along there? This area is already gridlocked with cars and lorries without adding buses. It is a nightmare! Disabled and elderly people like myself need easy access to Marks & Spencer, the only department store we have left in Aberdeen, and of course the Bon-Accord Centre. This will be impossible if buses are not allowed on Union Street between Bridge Street and Market Street.
    As for building a new stadium for Aberdeen FC, why not just do up the existing one? Public money should not be used to fund the building of a new one on the beach front. Give us back our Crazy Golf, repair the broken steps and put in more lighting on the stretch of the Prom between the Beach Ballroom and the Bridge of Don junction. The Beach Ballroom could do with a bit of refurbishment but that is all that is needed down at the beach.

    These four councillors are letting down the citizens of Aberdeen and are ruining our once beautiful city. They should be ashamed of themselves

  7. I wilson says:

    If our local newspaper does not write a front page condemning the action of these councillors then their bias will be obvious for all to see.
    Come on P&J editor do your duty, tell the people of Aberdeen what is going on in their city.

  8. John Flood says:

    This cries out for a straw poll. The man in the street has little or no say in decisions taken by a handful of councillors. Time to consult the public and not to ignore the general opinion as has happened too often in the past.

  9. Naomi Mandel says:

    I agree with everything that everyone has already said in their comments.
    HOW can it be right, or remotely acceptable, that only 4 councillors, out of the 45 that comprise the city council, be allowed to make SUCH an important decision. What about what the citizens of Aberdeen want? Have these councillors forgotten that they are here to represent the citizens of Aberdeen?
    As has already been stated, many citizens of Aberdeen continue to be unable to access various city centre facilities, due to the ongoing “pedestrianisation” of Union Street, most notably elderly people and those with various disabilities.
    By thus disenfranchising many of the citizens of Aberdeen City, and perhaps those who would want to visit from outwith Aberdeen, surely that constitutes a breach of the Equality Act 2010?
    The city itself looks like it is decaying. These are words that a regular visitor from Glasgow said to me, pre pandemic. It looks much worse now, with so many empty buildings and some sort of attempt at pedestrianisation. This pedestrianisation is now looking very worn, and very tacky, and, as has been said above, was only meant to be temporary. I’ve yet to meet anyone who thinks it s a good idea, or even wants it.
    A pal recently told me she is coming to Aberdeen in March. she has never been here before and is excited at the thought of looking around and seeing Aberdeen City. I shuddered at the thought, knowing what she will be greeted with.
    The City, as it is now, is an embarrassment, compared to how proud and beautiful it once was.
    And as for what is planned for the beach area, again, I’ve yet to meet anyone who thinks will be great for the City, AND is happy for SO much money to be spent (i.e. wasted!) on it.
    Instead, as has already has been said above, money should be spent on doing up what is already there and thus preserve what is best, and unique about Aberdeen.
    And yes, this decision is FAR too important to be left to just 4 councillors. Yes, this MUST go to a fully Council meeting to be fully and properly debated.
    Also, the citizens of Aberdeen MUST be able to have their say, a meaningful say, not a tick box exercise.
    The citizens of Aberdeen must be part of something that affects everyone, and their children, and generations to come.
    After all, it is the citizens who will continue to stay away.

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