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Huge community effort could clinch city status for Elgin

Campaigners are hopeful its rich history and culture will secure city status for Elgin.
Campaigners are hopeful its rich history and culture will secure city status for Elgin.

The document showcasing the unique culture, heritage and identity of Elgin has been submitted in the hope it will secure city status for the town.

Moray Council sent the bid to the Cabinet Office today hours before the 4pm deadline for the civic honours competition being run to mark the Queen’s platinum jubilee next year.

Elgin Community Council has spear-headed the campaign to get city status and has gathered much of the information used in the application.

Chairman of the group Alastair Kennedy thanked all the organisations and individuals who have backed the bid.

Along with his Elgin community council colleagues Alastair Kennedy has been campaigning for Elgin to become a city.

He said: “We’ve had offers of help from the Lord Lieutenant of Moray, Elgin Museum, where two ladies have gone to great lengths to help, and Elgin Town Hall for the community to name a few, and we’ve got a letter of support from the Earl of Elgin.

“We’ve also had assistance from an officer from Moray Council who was crucial to collating the vast amount of information that had been gleaned.

“My colleagues in the community council have put a lot of hard work into giving this bid the best chance of success, but we couldn’t have done that without the enthusiasm and support from the communities across Elgin and Moray.”

City status could bring financial benefits

Members unanimously backed the move to apply for city status at a Moray Council meeting in October.

If successful, it will bring financial benefit to the whole area.

Leader of the council Graham Leadbitter, who is also an SNP councillor for Elgin South, said: “Many discussions have taken place to put together the story of Elgin – our history, famous sons and daughters, sporting and leisure life, our industries, education, health and much more.

Moray Council leader Graham Leadbitter believes Elgin ‘thoroughly deserves’ to become a city.

“Elgin’s story is rich, compelling and stretches back nearly a thousand years.

“City status would be thoroughly deserved.”

Previously bids were sought for the monarch’s golden jubilee in 2002 and diamond anniversary in 2012, which proved successful for Stirling and Perth respectively.

Inverness became a city in a similar contest in 2000.

Photographs of Elgin landmarks, along with a map showing parks, tourist attractions, leisure and entertainment venues as well as the main tourist routes is included in the bid, along with population figures and information on sport centres and shopping areas.

Recommendations will be put forward to the Queen who will make a final decision next year.

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