Brechin hub idea to be closely investigated

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Members of Angus Council’s neighbourhood services committee agreed to probe further into the idea of a community hub in Brechin.

Following an initial eight-week feasibility study, members agreed on Thursday to utilise the remaining funds from the Scottish Government to allow for further investigation into the idea of creating of a community health, social care and emergency service hub in the town.

According to the report by Alan McKeown, strategic director for communities, the initial study was completed “with the involvement of Angus Council, NHS Tayside, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue and Scottish Ambulance Service, together with representation from Voluntary Action Angus and the independent sector.”

It is now expected that a 16-week validation exercise will be carried out. The cost, which early indications put at £102,000, is to be met with funds from the existing allocation of hub enabling funds. An initial amount of £191,577 was given to the council for enquiries into the creation of a hub, and there is currently £151,900 left.

Mr McKeown explained: “The exercise would include validation of key parameters for business case purposes, of design parameters and of site parameters.”

The report further outlines the expected cost if the project was ever to go ahead, with a cost ranging from £7.2 million to £16.6 million, and potential savings ranging between £3.1 million and £12.5 million over continuing with existing buildings.

In his report, Mr McKeown stated: “The project, if viable, is intended to act as a springboard for further regeneration in the town and should complement rather than challenge the services/facilities that will be provided by the new Brechin Community Campus in the west of the town.”