THIS week we asked Forfar Dispatch readers what they feel the town of Forfar needs to improve and received a mixed response.
While some feel that Forfar is in need of more leisure facilities such as a new swimming pool and a cinema, others felt that the town is full of things to do.
Carol Ferguson said: “The town needs a cinema, people from all over Angus travel to Dundee for the cinema so surely one in Angus would be a success.”
While her views were backed up by some, Graham Scott said: “There used to be cinemas in all of Angus’s towns.
“With videos, DVDs and downloads you would have to be mad to set up a cinema outside a major city these days.”
Michelle McCallum and Susan Blackburn both felt that a bowling alley would benefit the town especially given the closure of Megabowl in Dundee last month.
Other suggestions included the reintroduction of a bingo hall and a casino.
One of the main things people are calling for is a new or improved swimming pool. Karen Watson, Karen Roy and Vicky Torrie all said that they would like a new pool with better parking and changing facilities.
Jennifer Wilton also wants to see a better pool, she said: “I’ve been to other places who have one large pool divided in half so that schools, clubs and classes can use the pool at the same time making it available to the public at all times.
“A lot of us would like to use the pool but cannot do this due to lack of access – the swimming pool is for everybody.”
She also had some criticisms for the weekend opening hours. She said: “If you want to go after 2pm at the weekend you can’t as it is closed to the public.
“Most people don’t work at weekends so would use the facilities. They want custom but don’t make it available. A revamped leisure centre complete with swimming pool is what Forfar needs!”
Swimmer Ellie McCallum added: “For us who swim for Forfar Falcons, the training in that pool is really poor compared to the pools we have competitions in.
“Think of the size of the town and then we have a little tiddler of a pool, it’s a shame.”
Mark Webster harked back to earlier days in the town when he said that he would like the Youth Club to be brought back.
While many said that they would like to see better facilities in the town others would like to see a better variety of shops.
Bob Fleming said: “There are so many shops closed these days, we should definitely have a few new clothes shops.
Marley Laurie and Gary Milne took a different view as they feel there is plenty to do here in town.
Marley Laurie said: “I actually think there’s loads to do in Forfar. I’m in two different clubs and would be in more if I had the time. My kids are in different clubs as well.”
Gary Milne also believes that Forfar has a lot to offer, but feels more should be done to promote different activities. He said: “Forfar already has a lot for people to do, but organisations, clubs and local government are doing a pretty poor job of letting people know what is actually available to them.
“Local clubs are stuck wondering why their numbers are dwindling but a lot of them are doing very little to attract new members and keep existing members.
“ The local council also provides a large number of facilities and activities for all age groups – and okay they’re not top class facilities – but should still cater for the needs of most people.
“These are difficult times and local people as well as the council are strapped for money, so moaning about new facilities isn’t going to get anyone anywhere, everyone needs to use existing facilities to prove that there is genuine demand for improvements or new facilities.
“ Increased attendance to exercise classes and general use of the facilities will in turn increase the club/organisation/council income which may in turn lead to something being done about the problems that many are so keen to highlight.
“Members of clubs, and people who use local facilities need to voice their concerns but should also together with each other, helping to come up with a solution for a particular issue – surely that might get some community spirit back in the area?
“I think Forfar is a good town, and Angus a good area, but they could do with an injection of new life, we need to pull together as a community, use and help develop local clubs and explore what’s actually on offer.”