Painting over the cracks

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A fire-ravaged part of Carnoustie High Street got a lick of paint as the town prepares for the arrival of a national civic beauty contest.

The boarded up shells of the former laundry, grocer and fishmonger which burned down in January benefited from a colourful sunflower motif, just in time for the arrival of the Keep Scotland Beautiful judges next month.

The work was carried out by two members of Carnoustie Theatre Club, Andy Gilbride and Jerry Swinley.

Carnoustie Community Council chairman Jim Simpson explained how it came about: “A boarded up shop front in the High Street wouldn’t be good for the competition and after seeing Carnoustie Theatre Club’s production of ‘Calendar Girls’ we thought we could paint a mural of sunflowers there.

“There’s three categories, horticulutral achievement, environmental responsibility and community participation.

“Basically the categories are all marked by the judges and I have to supply a portfolio and then the judges come along and mark everything.”

This year the community council has shouldered even more of the burden. Jim said: “Last year Angus Council supplied 20 or so hanging baskets and we supplied the remainder with money from businesses and individuals.

“However, this year with all the cutbacks Angus Council is not doing any hanging baskets and we are supplying them all and we have had a big response from the public again.

“We’d like to think we could improve on our bronze medal last year. The community council has been doing a lot of work behind the scenes with Angus Council, making sure that things picked up on last year don’t happen again.”