THE POOR performance of Arbroath’s Christmas lights over the festive season may have been down to power supply boxes and cables, according to a local councillor.
David Fairweather, who says he has been inundated with complaints from local residents about the erratic nature of the lights, held a meeting with two senior council officers and Councillor Peter Nield to get the bottom of the problem.
And it transpires that council staff and Tayside Contracts believe an issue with power supply is causing some of the illuminations not to light up when they are hung around the centre of town.
Councillor Fairweather now hopes that with an idea of what the problem could be with the Christmas lights, that disappointing displays in the town will be a thing of the past.
He told the Herald: “All lights for the burgh are checked before they are installed and this year we also had brand new lights provided for the West Port.
“But I know on three separate occasions, half of them went out and I had numerous complaints about others that were not working properly.
“Myself and Councillor Nield told officers about these problems and we know they were working hard with Tayside Contracts to resolve it, even on Christmas Eve and Hogmanay, though the resulting effort ended in disappointment.
“We are told it may be a problem with the power supply boxes and cables in the town.”
For the next festive season, it has been suggested that up to £50,000 could be taken out of Arbroath’s Common Good fund to make the next display the best the town has seen.
And now Councillor Fairweather is hoping businesses, community groups and other residents will do their bit to make sure Arbroath stays lit up over Christmas and New Year.
He added: “It is generally thought that the council provides our lights, but that is not the case.
“It is unfortunate that businesses, community organisations have not contributed any money over the past three years as any donations would have been matched from the Common Good Fund.
“However, this year it is intended that a large amount of funding from the Common Good can be used to give Arbroath the lights it deserves.
“Any business or organisation interested in donating will have their money match funded and we would be delighted to hear from anyone who wants to help out.
“If we want good lights year after year, the town needs to raise the money to buy and maintain the lights to make sure each Christmas is not a disappointment.”
Anybody interested in donating to help with Arbroath’s Christmas lights can contact David Fairweather on 07766073823.