Plea for residents to use local shops

Bishopbriggs town centre.

Bishopbriggs town centre.

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Council leader Rhondda Geekie is urging residents to use local shops in the run-up to Christmas, to ensure they “not only survive but thrive”.

Christmas lights are soon to be switched on in Kirkintilloch, Bishopbriggs, Bearsden and Milngavie, and, says Councillor Geekie, “wonderful” local outlets and special offers are among compelling reasons to shop in East Dunbartonshire town centres.

The call comes during Scotland’s Towns Week, organised by Scotland’s Towns Partnership, at a time when online sales and competition from out-of-town malls and city centre shops pose a major challenge to many west of Scotland local shopping circuits.

Milngavie and Bearsden are among towns which have developed a local Business Improvement District (BID), which involves Christmas plans and other special events throughout the year.

Meanwhile, the East Dunbartonshire Council is developing strategies for Bishopbriggs, Bearsden and Milngavie town centres, and people are being urged to get involved.

An online survey is live (link is external) until Wednesday, November 30, and workshops are taking place at –

Bishopbriggs – Wednesday, November 16 at Bishopbriggs Memorial Hall, 6.30pm-8.15pm

Milngavie – Thursday, November 17 at the Fraser Centre (Milngavie Precinct), 6.30pm-8.15pm.

A series of what are intended to be improvement works – including the controversial “shared spaces” scheme – is already underway in Kirkintilloch as part of the council’s master plan.

Councillor Geekie said: “I would invite everyone who lives or works in East Dunbartonshire’s town centres - and indeed everyone who visits - to use local shops and businesses as much as they can.

“Looking beyond the festive period we want to do all we can to ensure the continued vitality of our town centres, which is why it’s so important for people to give their views on Bearsden, Bishopbriggs and Milngavie town centres.”

“I would urge everyone with an interest in their towns to have a say via the online consultation or at workshop events.”

Anyone who wants to get involved in either the Bishopbriggs or Milngavie town centre workshopsis aksed tro send an e-mail to development.plan@eastdunbarton.gov.uk (link sends e-mail) to book a place