Is it not our area anymore?

editorial image

Shawlands has been criticised in recent years for a gradual slip in standards.

The local community council have already taken up the issue with the council, who have in turn created an action plan to ensure Shawlands becomes a more appealing place to live and invest.

But there’s one thing, all local shoppers and workers we spoke to felt could be improved immediatley: Shawlands Arcade.

Rudy Colville — a 60-year-old business owner from Shawlands — believes many percieved problems stem from the Arcade, which he believes is “falling apart” and that the area needs help from the council.

“Glasgow city council has to step in. The Arcade should be a focal point. Rates are too high throughout Shawlands.

“At this tough economic time, Glasgow city council has to help shop owners weather the storm, otherwise there will continue to be empty shops throughout”.

Michelle Boyle (20) is a sales assistant from Parkhouse who works in Shawlands.

She told The Extra: “I don’t spend much time here when I’m not working — there’s nothing for me.

“I would much rather take a ten minute bus journey into town. There’s no choice here”.

Graeme (74) and Catherine Edgar (70) have been visiting Shawlands for “more than 60 years”.

Mr Edgar told The Extra: “The Arcade is dragging the area down. I wish it was a true centre to the town – perhaps a cinema.

“There are too many takeaways, there is absolutely no variety or choice anymore”.

Mrs Edgar added: “It’s a shame how far downhill the town has gone, it used to be a nice place to visit”.

Chris Saxton – who has lived nearby for more than 20 years – is pleased with the “overall selection of bars and restaurants”.

However, he, like many others in Shawlands, believes the shopping leaves a lot to be desired.

“Shops don’t last two minutes in the town centre”, he said, “there is such a high turnover and the Arcade is an absolute joke”.

“It’s a snowball effect, until something is done about the Arcade, which lies at the centre of the main street, then everything about it will look more shabby and Shawlands won’t be able to prosper”.

“A few charity shops are good, but there’s nothing but charity shops now. The variety has been ripped out of the town”.

Patricia Hunter, a 44-year-old housewife from Strathbungo, attended the public meeting on the subject.

She said: “The council needs to act now and manage the streets better.

“The cost of parking puts many shoppers off while often, the litter and general appearance is a disgrace”.