May 132016

With thanks to Jessica Murphy, Senior Account Executive, Citrus:Mix.

Aberdeen-Inspired1A leading business organisation has kicked off their campaign to enhance the beauty of Aberdeen by planting a fruity addition to a popular city centre greenspace.

Aberdeen Inspired is hoping to build on its success in last year’s Keep Scotland Beautiful initiative, which is celebrating 50 years of community environmental improvement.

The organisation is planting five apple trees in the Roof Garden on top of St Nicholas shopping centre, with the help of Plan A, a group set up by Marks and Spencer to help protect the planet by sourcing responsibly, reducing waste and helping communities.

Gary Craig, chief executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said:

“Aberdeen Inspired is passionate about creating a more vibrant and appealing city centre and we believe efforts like this make all the difference to achieving that.

“The Roof Garden itself is a fantastic example of community groups and businesses coming together to transform an area and make it attractive for all ages and has been received very well so far. Planting the orchard is a further step in keeping that momentum going and will we hope be enjoyed by residents and visitors to the greenspace.

“We have been delighted with our success in Keep Scotland Beautiful in previous years and this orchard is one of many initiatives we have planned to keep that momentum going and continue trying to make a difference to the aesthetic of the city. This alongside the continuation of our floral enhancements, Adopt an Area projects and creative lighting scheme will continue to make a big impact in the city centre.”

Administered by Keep Scotland Beautiful, a member of the RHS Bloom Federation, Beautiful Scotland recognises the efforts of local authorities and communities which work tirelessly to improve their local cities, towns and villages.

Aberdeen Inspired achieved silver gilt status in the competition last year, as well as retaining the crown in the BID category.

Carole Noble, director at Keep Scotland Beautiful, said:

“Keep Scotland Beautiful is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and we are delighted that Aberdeen Inspired is taking part in Beautiful Scotland to help us celebrate.

“For half a century, local authorities and communities have been working together and we sometimes forget the massive impact that a clean and green environment has on people.  But, there is ample evidence that a good local environment can deliver a broad range of associated benefits in terms of physical and mental health and wellbeing, community cohesion and civic pride, and the creation of economic opportunities.”

Aberdeen Inspired is the banner under which the Aberdeen BID (Business Improvement District) operates. It is a business-led initiative within the city centre in which levy payers within the BID zone contribute.

Proceeds are used to fund projects designed to improve the business district. Further information on the work of Aberdeen Inspired is available at

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May 072015

StNicholasWith thanks to Phil Moar, Citrus Mix.

An initiative aimed at instilling a sense of civic pride in Aberdeen has secured nearly £200,000 of funding as it moves forward with plans to refresh the green space on the rooftop of the St Nicholas Centre.

Spearheaded by business organisation Aberdeen Inspired, the Team Aberdeen campaign is committed to fostering pride in the heart of the city by encouraging residents, visitors, businesses and other stakeholders to join together to enhance its aesthetic appeal.

The upper deck of the St Nicholas Centre has been earmarked as the location for the organisation’s next city centre project as it aims to make a number of additions to the space in an effort to encourage more people to use it on a regular basis.

Nearly £200,000 of funding has already been secured, with Aberdeen City Council committing £50,000 to the project. A further £50,000 has been pledged by social enterprise Greenspace Scotland, more than £50,000 will come from Bon Accord & St Nicholas, £20,000 from Aberdeen Inspired and £10,000 from Atkins and Creative Core.

Plans for the once popular lunch-break spot are at an early stage but could include improved seating, innovative planting and improved lighting which all would come together to aid the revitalisation of the area alongside enhancing its appeal to families. A portion of the money secured from Bon Accord & St Nicholas will also be going towards the repair of paving stones in the area.

Gary Craig, chief executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said:

“Over the past months, we’ve been working hard to secure funding that will be used to enhance the upper deck of the St Nicholas Centre and we’re delighted to have nearly £200,000 of that in place already.

“I’d like to thank Aberdeen City Council, Greenspace Scotland, Bon Accord & St Nicholas, Atkins and Creative Core for their commitment to the project and we’re looking forward to working with them all as plans for the space move forward in the coming weeks.

“We want to really encourage people to make more use of the space and we want to introduce little changes to the area that will breathe new life into it. A big part of this will be adding to the greenspace that is already there and we’re currently looking at innovative approaches to planting that will hopefully bring something different to this specific part of the city.

“We feel there is real potential to enhance this area and help it become a space that people will be able to enjoy for years to come. This could be as a location for individuals to enjoy on their lunch break or simply as an attractive connection walkway from Union Street to Upperkirkgate. The potential for the area is already there and it is our aim, along with support from a number of our partners, to allow it to flourish.”

Aberdeen Inspired is the banner under which the Aberdeen BID (Business Improvement District) operates. It is a business-led initiative within the city centre in which levy payers within the BID zone contribute. Proceeds are used to fund projects designed to improve the business district and driving footfall to the zone.

For further information on the work of Aberdeen Inspired visit

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Jul 212014

By Ken Hutcheon.

Provost Skene's House by Stanley Wright

Provost Skene’s House – Credit: Stanley Wright

The date for lodging any comments/objections to the Marischal Square and/or Provost Skene Developments has now passed with 146 formal comments/objections having been received by Aberdeen City Planning Dept.

The Council are now considering whether to have a public hearing regarding this development.

The Planning Committee will meet next Thursday 24th July to decide.

Unfortunately it appears that leading councillors are confident they can push this present development plans through WITHOUT a public hearing. If we can get enough councillors to understand that they should be voting to support the wishes of the people that put them in power we can achieve a public hearing to get the developers to think again.

The developers can surely produce a far more innovative design that will open the magnificent view of the shining granite of Marischal College and the historic frontage of Provost Skene’s House for generations of Aberdonians and tourists to the city.

To condemn the centre of Aberdeen (the silver city) to a series of boring square boxes which hide the beauty of Marischal College and Provost Skene’s House is a terrible act of vandalism by our council.

Anyone who is understandably concerned regarding this development should email the Councillors for their area to suggest they vote to hold a public hearing. Over 1100 Aberdeen citizens stated at the exhibitions of this development they do not want these plans to go ahead.

To find your councillor and their email address, the easiest way is to put your postcode into the Aberdeen City Interactive map.

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Jun 232014

Provost Skene's House by Stanley WrightBy Ken Hutcheon.

The Marischal Square Development objections closing date may be gone, but MUSE developers have further plans in mind.
Proposals to remove the historic archway, stairs and wall in front of Provost Skene’s House are being considered. The plans can be viewed here.

This is despite the fact that on MUSE’s own website it states:

“Provost Skene’s House will be at the heart of the Marischal Square project……. The role and setting of Provost Skene’s House will be given special consideration in the new development. It will be protected from the demolition then re-opened at an appropriate time.

“Money is being set aside for conservation work.”

There is also a picture of Provost Skene House as it is now, complete with arch and surrounding wall, on that page. Presumably the money that is being set aside is for the removal of part of the frontage of Provost Skene’s House.

You still have time, till 3rd July to comment on, or object to these changes.

You will find more information on my website at Note reference for this plan is 140755.

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Nov 012013

By Duncan Harley

St Nicks in the building ofThe old Aberdeen Council office building formally known as St Nicholas House is being torn down piece by piece after less than fifty years.

At today’s prices, the £2m cost of the 1965 project may seem small fry to many Aberdeen residents, who are more used to municipal architectural bills on a far grander scale.

Granite-built projects such as Marischal College, which lies just across the road from the part-demolished 1960s concrete multi-storey office block, often last for hundreds of years at a far lower cost per century.

Of course, in its day, St Nicholas House was seen as the way ahead in terms of municipal architecture. Scottish Secretary Willie Ross officially opened it on the first of May 1970. The retiring city architect, George Keith, was present at the opening. Seemingly St Nicholas House was one of the “outstanding features of the considerable role Mr Keith played in the design of post war Aberdeen.”

Many city residents were looking forward to its demolition. The blowing up of the building was a favoured option, and camera enthusiasts are reported to have been enthusiastically checking out vantage points all around the city in expectation of the event. However the building’s tightly contained position within the city centre precluded destruction by an explosives team, and the current demolition carries on piecemeal.

Aberdonians are this week invited to comment on plans to re-develop the site. Gordon McIntosh, Director of Enterprise and Planning, has described the new proposals by Muse Developments, as “exciting.”

If you care about the future of your city, take a look at the consultation exhibition at Aberdeen Art Gallery. It runs until November 2nd and is free to view. Employees from Muse Developments Ltd and the Aberdeen City Council will be on hand to advise and listen to your comments.

Until 8th November, you can have your say online. Relating to Marischal Square, views are being sought on transport options for Broad Street. An online questionnaire will be open until 22nd november.

A more detailed scheme to re-develop the site is expected to be lodged with the City Planning Department in a few months.

Comments to the Marischal Square Working Group can be sent via Councillor Marie Boulton, Depute Leader of the Council at :

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May 022013

Voice’s Old Susannah takes a look over the past week’s events in the ‘Deen and beyond. By Suzanne Kelly.

Tally Ho!  This past week there was an astonishingly great fashion show by Gray’s School of Art second and third year fashion students, held in The Seven Incorporated Trades of Aberdeen.
It was professionally organised, smoothly and elegantly run (with a great reception), and the work on show was by any standard advanced beyond the expected level.  More on that elsewhere in Aberdeen Voice.

Let’s take a bit of a break from Mr Trump this week I think.  Besides which, he’s about to issue writs to the Scottish Government and I’m really scared!  If Donald doesn’t want windfarms, Donald will take us to court!

When a law abiding man like that takes legal action, you know he’s not doing it frivolously.  I’m sure he’s got a point:  hardly anyone’s signing up for golf at Balmedie, and it’s almost as if the 6,000 jobs that were created might be in peril. 

This lack of golfers could be due to the sandstorms, hailstorms, rain and cold weather, but far more likely people are staying away in case they’d have to see a wind farm offshore.  If I’m going to spend £195 for a round of golf, then have a £100 lunch for two consisting of a few burgers, fries and coffees, I don’t want to be looking at windfarms, either.  For that kind of money, I want Led Zeppelin performing live.

I hear the Mayday march might be cancelled this year.  Since all of the labour force is now doing so very well under the Coalition Government, the unions decided there is no need for any display.  Things are almost as great as when the entire town marched against Kate Dean.

There is also to be a party and events in Union Terrace Gardens that afternoon, but since it is so full of criminals and drug smugglers, I’m sure we’ll all be too afraid to go there.  If only we could have had the granite web.

The beautiful granite-clad concrete web may be toast now, but then again, we look set to get some very fetching, brand new glass-box office buildings soon.  Really, how do these trendy architects come up with these great designs?

These happening, nearly modern buildings will replace St Nicholas’ House.  The complex will blend right into the local architecture of Marischal College and won’t stick out like a dated pastiche predictable cheap sore thumb whatsoever.  No doubt these glass box office buildings will look absolutely state-of-the art near the Milne Triple Kirks glass box office buildings and won’t seem old dated and dirty in 3 years or less.

Given the seagull and pigeon populations, this may be a good time to open a window cleaning business.

Norwich decided to encourage some peregrines to nest in their city centre

Speaking of Triple Kirks, poor Stewart certainly has had his difficulties lately.  He may have failed to get Scottish football teams to vote with him despite his use of reasoned debate, but at least he showed the city centre wildlife he was boss.

You may remember how Stewart Milne, saviour of Scottish Football and tasteful developer arranged to have the long-settled peregrine falcons ‘discouraged’ from nesting in the Triple Kirks site when he took it over.  Well done Stewart.

Unlike clever, business-orientated Aberdeen, Norwich decided to encourage some peregrines to nest in their city centre.  The people of Norwich surprisingly find their rare peregrines and the newly-hatched chicks a source of interest, tourism, pride and education as they and the wider world watch the birds on cctv.  More info here: .

The RSBP believes there are fewer than 1400 breeding pairs in the UK.  With as many as that around, it is no wonder the previous Aberdeen City Council administration didn’t discourage Milne from discouraging the birds.  We need more office buildings you see.

As there is clearly not enough building work going on to placate important local contractors, some still cling to the possibility of turning Union Terrace Gardens into a parking lot/shopping mall, which we so desperately need.  What other explanation is there for the continued existence of the limited company which is the Aberdeen City Gardens Trust?

They’re still listed as an active company at Companies House, with directors Tom Smith, Lavinia Massie and of course Colin Crosby.  (I wonder how they managed to get so much positive Granite Web coverage in Chamber of Commerce publications?  Perhaps as a board member, Colin could help field the answer to this mystery.)  Then again, Colin is also on the Aberdeen Harbour Board, which now seeks to expand into the remaining coastal greenbelt.

An ambitious man, Colin; he’ll make us all rich yet.  Well, some of us rich anyway.

Between the ACGT, ACSEF, the Harbour Board, the Chamber of Commerce, Brewin Dolphin, and the board of Robert Gordon’s College, it’s a wonder Crosby hasn’t dropped any balls.

 we are all so weak-willed we’ll do whatever is made easy for us to do

For some reason I’m reminded of an episode of Dr Who in which invading aliens try to build monstrosities all over any green space they could all in the name of profit, although I can’t think why that should spring to mind just now.

Yes, it’s men like Colin who disprove the otherwise sound, logical government experiment in Nudge Theory.  I’m sure we all know what this important Nudge Theory is, but I’ll get onto it with a definition or two anyway.

Nudge Theory: (modern English jargon phrase) Behavioural theory that people are inherently lazy and need to be pushed into doing what is best for them.

The Nanny State lives on, and thank goodness for that.

It’s like this:  only the Colin Crosbys, Stewart Milnes and other rich businessmen aren’t lazy – the rest of us are.  Worse, we are all so weak-willed we’ll do whatever is made easy for us to do.  This highly-scientific theory is now a government triumph!  Result!  Not only is it part of the reason the country’s doing so well, but it’s also going to  be launched as an initiative!

And you thought there was no good news around.

The BBC covers this marvellous development, and supplies examples of what might otherwise sound like idiotic psychobabble.  For instance, if manufacturers put a label on a bottle of wine to the effect that the average person drinks one glass of wine a day, we’ll all follow suit and do just that.

School children will start eating healthier at lunchtimes too.  Why?  Because we’re going to put the tastier junk food items in locations that are more difficult to reach than healthier options.  This logic is brilliant!  You can see examples of how this works in the shops today.  Since lad’s mags, fags and booze are kept out of reach no one buys them because they’re too lazy to do so.

It’s clear this Nudge Theory is going to take off; it’s so easy to understand.

This scheme is going to make the government millions as well as make all of us safer and less stressed by having to think for ourselves.  I personally look forward to having my laziness used to steer me into good behaviour in this subtle manner.  It’s not at all Kafkaesque or Orwellian for the government to spend our time and our money on getting us to fall into line and be good.

But the really good news is that this will be a ….

Partnership Model: (modern English jargon) A business entity or company formed by government and private enterprise.

Well, since forming in 2010 the brains behind this great Nudge Theory scheme have really come together to ambitiously turn this scientific theory into a money-spinner.  Old Susannah has to wonder if people are inherently lazy, then what sets the people behind this Nudge Theory Partnership Model and their work to go into business with their scheme apart from the rest of us lazy, weak-willed populace.

I guess that they’re just smarter, better, brighter than we are.  Only to the worst kind of lazy cynic would this great humanitarian scheme look like a brazen wheeze and ploy to earn money for old and unnecessary rope.

Here’s what the BBC, lazy as they are, were able to find out:-

“It could become the first of “dozens” of elements of Whitehall to be spun out, as Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude plans to shake-up the Civil Service.

“A spokesman for Mr Maude said: ‘We are in a global race for the jobs and opportunities of the future. To get Britain back on the rise we must find innovative ways to deliver better services more efficiently’. [Old Susannah wonders if Mr Maude was too lazy to make his own statement to the press, and had to be ‘nudged’ into releasing a statement by this spokesman]

“’It’s great news that the world-renowned ‘nudge’ unit is spinning out from central government. As a mutual they will combine the benefits of private sector experience and investment with the innovation and commitment from staff leadership.  This accelerates our drive to make public assets pay their way. We hope to support dozens more new spin outs over the next few years. This is a whole new growth area and Britain is leading the way.”

Well, I’m impressed.  We’re going to make money out of exploiting people’s natural fecklessness.

The government will join with a private company (no doubt one completely unrelated to any government ministers, tax avoiders or big business interests or lobbyists.  Then, they’ll sell the scheme back to the government, which will demand government offices buy into it.

Lazy?  I guess you could say fecklessness is off and running as a way to make profits.  Or something like that.

Group Four changed to G4S, and did a splendid job running the Olympics

I wonder what this great wheeze will wind up earning for the taxpayer over the years?  Undoubtedly we’ll all be better off.  Otherwise, they’ll just tell us we’ll be better off, and we’ll be too lazy and/or too stupefied by our one glass of wine a day to bother to find out the real story.

If I could only motivate myself to do some work, or even to open another BrewDog.

Ages ago the Government started privatising everything, and look how well that’s turned out.  For instance, Group Four security started running various prison services.  These went so well, Group Four changed to G4S, and did a splendid job running the Olympics without any problems at all.  Could the government complain if things went wrong?

Not really – the contracts were sewn up very well, government and private sector overlaps tended to help each other out or at least look the other way if problems arose, and lobbyists were always on hand with sweeteners to keep the cogs well oiled.  And so it will be with the private/public money-spinning Partnership Model, which will industriously make money out of the fact we the people are lazy.

Nudge Nudge wink wink indeed.

With the Mayday march about to take place, I think we should extend an invitation to the brave, pioneering, hard-working men and women behind Nudge Theory and the Partnership Model to come and join in.  I have no doubt that if our teachers, carers, volunteers, firemen, etc. could meet the Nudge professionals, they’d understand just what real hard work is.

I was going to write about the latest in relation to the standoff between the press and the government over press regulation.  I was going to write something about Trump, windfarms, and golf, but I realise that I’m just too lazy to do so.

So it’s off to watch some television until I fall asleep, and hope the government will give me some clear pointers on what to do and what not to do, but without me having to even know I’m being steered to do the right thing, as decided by the Nudge Theory think-tank.  As long as I don’t have to think too much, or do much, that’ll suit me fine.

Time for my one glass of wine.

Next week – more fecklessness, or possibly some recklessness.

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Jun 222012

By Bob Smith.

A quine ca’ed Annie Lennox
His kickit up an affa stir
Rubbishin the “gairdens” plan
Some fowk are in a birr

Gweed on ye Annie quine
Fer ca’in the plans jist crap
Ye’ve ruffled a fyow feathers
Widdie’s gang are in a flap

Ye’ve ivvery richt ti hae yer say
An hark back ti the 60’s folly
Fin biggin bliddy concrete trash
Wis thocht maist affa jolly

St Nicholas Hoose fer a stairt
Faa drimt up iss ugly wart?
Syne they blockit aff George Street
Planners didna gie a fart

Yon college doon bye Holburn
Wisna pleesin ti the ee
It seenwis aa knockit doon
In case students hid ti flee

The fauchie new Uni library
Some think it anither boob
A square biggin made o gless
A muckle giant Rubik’s cube

Oor toon is in an affa mess
Fer ‘eers hisna bin weel run
Noo if things still gyang agley
Shout “Annie Get Yer Gun”

©Bob Smith “The Poetry Mannie” 2012

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May 172012

There was jubilation in Aberdeen today after the SNP and Lib Dems were sensationally returned to power. Samuel Clemens writes.

The March referendum result having trumped the local elections that followed it in May, the first act of the reinstated council will be to  overwhelmingly  approve the City Sky Project.
This ambitious plan by international tycoon Donald Duck and Axsef will raise the entire city to the roof level of St Nicholas House.

Keith Stuart, former councillor and now European ambassador to China said:

“Only 25,004 people voted for Labour in the elections, whereas 50.001% of voters voted for the City Sky Project in the referendum.

“Since Labour campaigned on a pro UTG ticket, it’s only democratic that they should be removed from power, made to empty their desks, have their phones confiscated, and be escorted from the city by Union Square Security Guards.”

Of the City Sky Project, Deputy Council Leader John Fletcher explained :

“Labour had intended to demolish St Nicholas House and replace it with a garden. That scheme would have cost millions of pounds and only had 99% of its funding in place.

“Then Donald Duck came along and suggested raising the entire city to the roof level of St Nicholas House, as an elegant alternative to demolition. He even offered to fund the first £5m himself. A scam like this only comes along once in a lifetime, and we all felt it was a visionary concept that could really revitalise the city centre.

“As soon as this is imposed on the people of Aberdeen I’ll be relocating to Brighton, where I can lead an alternative lifestyle.”

International Tycoon Donald Duck has strong ties with the city because his German grandmother once owned a Scottish Terrier named Jock.

Well respected accountants Price-Whatnohouse-Kline-Beecham have eliminated the need to consult specialist construction surveyors by guesstimating the project at an affordable £500m. A spokesperson said:

“We are merely acting on the instructions of our client, Donald Duck. He calls the shots.”

The balance of the funding will be raised under the tested system of CIF, or Crony Increment Funding. Council protégé Callum McChild deftly explained the workings of this complex funding mechanism,

“Under this scheme the entire city will be leased to an unregistered charity vehicle named Axsef World Domination Fund Limited for a period of not less than 525 years.

“The cost of the development will be recouped by increased business rates in the two new towns that will be constructed within the CIF zone to the North of Aberdeen. These are to be named Peterhead and Fraserburgh.

“The increased business rates will be in effect for a period of 25 years.  Although it is a certainty that this will repay the loan, any remaining debt will then in theory be recouped by confiscating and auctioning the homes of everyone living in the city or its suburbs. But that part will never happen; never in all my six years as a teenager has something like that occurred.”

Lord Provost Humptress Dumptress, who represents the ward of Steven Wiggy Construction Limited, claimed that all her constituents were in favour of the project.

“Aberdeen would have been the laughing stock of the entire Universe had it rejected The City Sky Project. The alternative is that St Nicholas House is painted bright orange with F*CK YOU stencilled down the side of it and left to stand forever, and the Art Gallery will almost certainly fall down of its own accord.”

Mike Sheepdog, Spokesman for the annoying tree-hugging luddite NIMBY Occupy movement spin-off, Friends of Aberdeen, thumped his chest and shouted


Bohmenian cafe owner Steve Bakewell disagrees with Mike Sheepdog,

“There is an alternative.  I have plans drawn up to reopen St Nicholas House as a macrobiotic cafe.  As you can see from these drawings we’ve incorporated a giant spiral staircase around the exterior which we also plan to reupholster in tasteful crushed velvet.  There will be outdoor balconies every third floor with canopies to protect patrons from all the seagull shit.”

Esteemed International Architects Diddly Squat Rankturd, who designed the world revered tourist attraction An Overgrown Field are to head up the project. Donald Duck explained,

“Yeah, this is a great deal for you limeys, these guys turned a bunch of grass into some wild flowers and folks flocked to see it from all over the world.

“It was inspirational. Charles Rankturd is jetting in to have brunch with some students at Gray’s, because Zooey thought that would be a good photo op.”

Aberdeen Voice got a sneak peak at the plans and can confirm that everything, with the exception of St Nicholas House, will be demolished in order to prep the area. We then asked 100 people in the vicinity of Cornhill Hospital how they felt about seeing the entire city being reduced to rubble.

  • White Heather Wifie felt that the city was old, dirty, covered in chewing gum, and should be replaced with something new.
  • Gilcomston Tramp said he never used the city and didn’t see the point in it.
  • The Guitar Wifie from St Nicholas Centre complained that the city was only used by drunks and junkies, and wasn’t safe to visit anymore.
  • Aye Aye Wifie fae King Street said she had a problem getting her stolen shopping trolley up and down stairs especially when it was full of Yorkshire Terriers.
  • A man with seagull feathers in his hair felt that the city was an eyesore and clearly past its sell by date.

A representative of the Federation of Small Nutcases said,

“Our members are in favour of the project, and so is everyone else.”

“It is heartening to hear that not only will St Nicholas House be preserved, but that it will be reinforced to act as a symbolic supporting pillar for the revitalised city.”

Herr Flick, spokesman for Axsef, revealed how police had to be called in after annoying tree-hugging luddite NIMBY Occupy movement spin-off, Friends of Aberdeen kidnapped his family, stole his plasma television, barbecued his dog, scrawled the world “PIG” on his wall in blood, called him a w**ker online, and hurt his feelings.

Although clearly shaken he bravely explained, “The entire inside of the structure will be one enormous arts centre, capable of holding over one million people, designed in the theme of a shopping mall. Art and shopping are integral to one another.

“Our PR company conducted research that revealed art and shopping are two sides of the same coin. This vibrant fusion of them will create a cafe culture and determine our entire weather system for thousands of years to come. The city will benefit from hosting prestigious events like Fame Academy and The World Dwarf Throwing Championships.”

The Office for Spoilt Brat Future Prime Minister said in a statement that Spoilt Brat felt that Aberdeen was lacking in connectivity.

“To get from one side to the other you have to pass through the middle or go around.  Once the City Sky Project is completed it will also be possible to bungee jump over the side then ride an elevator back up.

“People will start to move around more exploring these sorts of tactile possibilities. It’s all about connectivity, that’s why vibrant cities like Disneyland and Alton Towers are such a commercial success.”

Councillor Josh Corblimey thought that this had the potential to be just like Space 1999,

“We could have robots and stuff, and everyone could eat that mashed potato stuff that you mix in the packet and microwave.  In fact everyone would have access to microwaves, and we could communicate with each other using them.

“Microwaves would be like phones, and we could all wear suits of tinfoil, fly around in jet-packs and make popcorn. Imagine if someone farted whilst flying their jet pack? It would be ace. But I see the need to make education our priority. Happy days!”

We dug up Ex-Aberdeen Manager Ally McGab who came close to winning the World Cup with Scotland in 1978. He commented:

“The people of Aberdeen need to think big, but remember it’s a game of two halves Archie.”

Celebrity Scottish President John West Salmon was craned into Aberdeen for five minutes where he gave the project his endorsement 110% while presiding over the public execution of unpopular crazed renegade Mike Sheepdog.

Aberdeen Voice comments:

The people of Aberdeen have no choice but to welcome this ambitious scheme. The fact that the referendum was rigged is irrelevant, that’s all in the past, now we must move on with our lives and embrace the future. And the sky is the limit!

( Add your own view on this exciting venture in the comments box below )

Mar 012012

With thanks to Fuad Rehimov. 

On 26th February members of the University of Aberdeen’s Azerbaijani Society and others from the local Azerbaijani diaspora held a 2 hour demonstration at the St Nicholas Centre as part of the international Khojaly genocide awareness campaign.

 The demonstration marked exactly 20 years since 613 civilians were massacred in what was one of the most brutal and horrific acts of the 20th century, yet often referred to as  the forgotten massacre.

“The Khojaly massacre occurred during the armed conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, a region inside Azerbaijan with a substantial ethnic Armenian population. After capturing most of the region and expelling ethnic Azeri inhabitants, Armenian forces, with the assistance of the Soviet Army’s 366th motorised regiment, which was stationed in the regional capital of Khankendi (Stepanakert), carried out a veritable bloodbath among the Azerbaijani population in the town of Khojaly. “

The Armenian barbarism towards Khojalians is almost impossible to describe. Armenians claim that genocide was committed on them by Ottomans a hundred years ago, but how can they explain the atrocities, the inhumane crimes they themselves committed against Azerbaijani civilians in Nagorno Karabag, a mere two decades ago?

Fuad Rehimov told Aberdeen Voice:

“The French Government adopts a law which threatens to punish people who don’t accept Armenian genocide, but they never say a single word about babies who were killed in cold blood.

“If it is just politics, then it’s very dirty and very ugly politics which has no morals. If I were Armenian, I would feel shame for the barbarism that my nation committed.

“This picture was taken by Russian correspondent Victoriya Ivleeva on 1st March 1992 in Hojali, Azerbaijan.

“There is a girl without arms on the road with her slaughtered family on the left.

“This atrocity was committed by Armenians. You can see an Armenian car with the marauders’ plate in the town of Azeri.”

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Feb 242012

By Mike Shepherd.

The polling cards are out for the Union Terrace Gardens referendum and you have until March 1 to vote. The hype means you’ll have been bombarded with leaflets, pamphlets, news items and radio adverts.
If ‘connectivity’, a ‘21st century contemporary garden’, or ‘street-level access’ are key factors in deciding your vote, look no further; vote for the City Garden Project.

If you are undecided or swithering then read these very good reasons for voting to retain Union Terrace Gardens. 

1. Your vote will preserve the look and feel of the Granite City. Union Terrace Gardens are an integral part of the heritage of Aberdeen. Planned by the same architects who designed the Art Gallery and the frontage of Marischal College, they show an architectural harmony in the city centre which would be destroyed by a modernistic City Garden.

2. Your vote will not result in a ghastly modern structure replacing our park. Although described as the City Garden, it is in fact a mixture of buildings, flyovers, underpasses and parkland. The design has a passing resemblance to 1960s-style new town architecture. At one public meeting, someone said that the underpasses in particular were likely to end up as urban no-go areas. I have even heard a supporter of the scheme conceding that it will look dated after about five to ten years.

3. Your vote will stop a multitude of new glass box office blocks being built in the city centre. Council documents show that consideration has been given to plans to build a central business district in the city centre and encourage office block construction. The building of the City Garden Project, “will encourage development in the city centre sooner, and on a bigger scale, than might otherwise be the case without public investment in enabling infrastructure.”

4. Your vote will improve our much-loved park. Jimmy Milne, oilman and MD of Balmoral Group, has said:

“I and many of my business contemporaries, are committed to establishing a fund which will help bring the gardens back to their former glory. Without destroying our heritage, and without putting Aberdeen City further into debt, it would not be difficult to breathe fresh life into the park. Improved access, new planting, cleaning and restoration, park wardens and live events could all be relatively easily and cost effectively achieved.”

5. Your vote will ensure that the mature trees in Union Terrace Gardens will be saved. All 77 trees will be kept, including the twelve elms, some of which are at least 200 years old.

6. Your vote will stop our Council borrowing £70m they can’t afford. Aberdeen City Council, £562m in debt, is being asked to borrow £70m through a risky tax scheme to help fund the City Garden Project. If there is insufficient money to pay back the loan, Council funds will be required to service it.

7. Your vote will avoid significant disruption and pollution in the city centre for the near three years it will take to build the scheme. The technical feasibility study for the project estimates that the equivalent of 3,947 dump trucks of earth and 4,605 dump trucks of granite will be excavated from the Gardens causing ‘large environmental impacts from noise, transport, dust and energy use.’

8. Your vote will avoid the major traffic problems caused by the movement of heavy lifting equipment, dumper trucks and lorries in and out of the city centre. It is estimated that the City Garden will take almost three years to build. It is likely that there will be major traffic problems in the city for much of this time. City centre business will be impacted by this and may never recover.

9. Your vote will avoid much, if not all, of the Council’s cultural activities being displaced to the underground building in the City Garden. The council funds institutions occupying cosy, intimate venues such as the Music Hall, Lemon Tree and Belmont Cinema. A review of council-funded cultural activities will be made with a view to possible relocation to the underground concourse.

10. Your vote will avoid any consideration that the future of the HM Theatre could be in doubt. Two major performance venues will be built in the City Garden only yards from HM Theatre. Councillors have asked if this will have an impact on the future of HM Theatre. No specific assurances have been given.

Aberdeen could change forever if the City Garden is built, and probably not for the better.

We have the chance to keep the leafy, green heart of the Granite City.