A community group fears the removal of divisive social distancing measures from a north-east town centre could put some people off visiting.
Turriff is free from bollards and back to two-way traffic following the removal of all of its Spaces for People work.
The move, which includes the removal of a one-way system and pavement-widening measures in the form of road bollards on Main Street and High Street, has been welcomed by business owners.
Turriff Business Association chairwoman, Marj Chalmers, said: “The buzz about the town is good and people are pleased.”
Business owners, representatives and town councillors met Aberdeenshire Council’s road department on Tuesday evening and presented two options to officers, one from the business association preferring a removal of the measures, and one from the community council, advising they should remain.
Mrs Chalmers yesterday described the talks that took place.
She said: “The chairman of the community council was in favour of leaving things as is, but maybe making it more attractive.
“The council went away with those two options and came back with their decision on Wednesday. By Thursday morning the bollards and signs were away.”
The business association has long fought against the measures, which it argued reduced parking, made the town centre unattractive and drove away trade.
Turriff Community Council, meanwhile, was disappointed to see the measures removed.
In a statement, the group said: “The current global pandemic is unprecedented in any of our lifetimes, and we must do things that are unpopular, uncomfortable, or alien to us.
“We understand the position of the businesses in our vibrant town centre.
“Spaces for People was, as far as we were concerned, there to support them by giving people space if they wanted it.
“By not having the measures in place, the choice to go into Turriff is taken away from some people.
“The decision was that the Spaces for People measures are removed, while this is not our preferred option; we accept it as democratic decision.”
Mrs Chalmers added: “The measures were put in to help people maintain a social distance, but it has neither made Covid better or worse here.
“We are not a big city and people in Turriff are very courteous and always make way for each other.
“We will be putting signage up reminding people to be mindful and maintain a social distance.
“The business association and a lot of the public were quite keen to keep the one-way system but to remove all of the measures meant the one-way had to go too.
“We’ve had a lot of good feedback from our The Only Way Is Turriff campaign and television advert, and it’s really pulled a lot of people into the town, but they have spoken about the mess of the roads which is not what we want to be the main topic of conversation.
“Now the measures are away the vibe in the town is more upbeat and hopefully our businesses are set for a good December trading.”