A NEW page on a social networking website, which is a strong advocate of Arbroath Seafront Spectacular and the organisers, is gaining support.
The ‘Bring Back the Arbroath Seafront Spectacular’ Facebook page has already received the backing of over 220 people and several comments have been posted in support of the Arbroath Events committee which organised the popular annual show.
This year’s event at Victoria Park attracted some 15,000 patrons and boasted a wide range of entertainments, stands and stalls.
However, critical comments about the pricing structure appeared on a web page set up by local man Shaun Sievwright and was bolstered by about 140 folk, many of whom posted unflattering comments.
This week, however, the Against Seafront Spectacular web page was deleted.
Unfortunately, not before the organising committee, comprising Jean Stewart, Ann Birse, Wilson Robson and Howard Cargill, had taken a fair amount of unwarranted flak before deciding enough was enough and they called it a day, revealing in last week’s Herald that they would not organise any more shows.
Their decision was met by disappointment from the majority of people within the community, including MP Mike Weir, MSP Graeme Dey, councillors and many local folk who were sad that there would not be another Seafront Spectacular.
Hopefully, the show of support might persuade the organisers to reconsider their decision although so far they have declined to comment.
The originator of the Against Seafront Spectacular page has asked that he be allowed to make one final statement on the issue.
He said: “Having started the page people are now turning this into a personal attack on me.
“It is appropriate that I do make one apology and that is if the organisers misconstrued the page as an attack on them as volunteers. I have always strongly said congratulations on the work of the event
“The only reason the page was set up was because families felt that they couldn’t afford to go or that people would go but struggle to have anything to spend when they got in.
“If you look into why I started this page then it was a completely selfless act to allow people to air their views. After all, this is the 21st century and people are able to have their say.
“I simply don’t think that the page is the real reason behind the event being stopped. So why don’t we work as a community and allow this event to continue, that includes the organisers.”
Councillor Jim Millar commented: “The Seafront Spectacular really has lived up to its name over the past eight years providing excellent entertainment as well as a platform for local performers to showcase their talents. Crucially, many local charities and organisations, have received generous donations from Arbroath Events, who run the Spectacular.”
“Given the often unfounded and inflammatory criticism that the event has come under on a social networking site, the news that a page calling for the return of the event has attracted much more support is very much welcome, and in my view validates the high regard that people have for the small committee of Ann Birse, Jean Stewart, Howard Cargill and Wilson Robson.
“This committee works hard all year to organise a show that boosts the local economy and has given a great deal of pleasure to many thousands of people.”
He concluded: “I also welcome the news that Shaun Sievwright who started the ‘Against Seafront Spectacular’ campaign, has announced he intends to delete his site.
“It is deeply regrettable, however, that the damage has been done, with Arbroath Events stating they will no longer organise the Spectacular.
“Given the level of support offered to Arbroath Events, I would urge the committee to ignore the negative comments, and reconsider their decision not run the event again.”