#MakingDumfries : Square Go
#MakingDumfries is The Stove’s long-term project to shape a grassroots vision for the town centre of Dumfries. “A market town without a market is like a coal mining town with no pit” it states in Julian Dobson’s book ‘How to Save Our Town Centres’ – in recent years many shops have closed on the High Street in Dumfries, but the local cry for ‘more shops’ exposes the chicken and egg reality of shops needing customers and the truth is that Dumfries needs more reasons for people to ‘come into toon’.
Over the week of 28th March The Stove staged a series of interconnected events under the collective banner of Square Go. The centrepiece of Square Go was a 2 day public workshop on Fountain Square outside The Stove which invited local people to engage in conversation on topics relating to the future of the town and then add these ideas to a giant map of Dumfries drawn out on the paving of the square. Leading the Square Go project were a group of artists, designers, architects and planners from The Stove Network and the local area.
Also taking part in Square Go were:
- Eolas architecture pavilion (part of Scottish Festival of Architecture – commissioned by Glasgow Institute of Architects and designed by Paul Pointon)
- Possible Scotland – a project by Lateral North
- Ironside Farrar – Landscape architects commisoned by Dumfries and Galloway Council to create an action plan for the public realm around Dumfries High Street
- ‘A House on the High Street’ premiere of a new film by John Wallace about Dumfries High Street and filmed over the last year framed by The Stove Network’s occupation of 100 High Street.
- Scottish Scenic Routes exhibition.
On Thursday 31st March The Stove took the Eolas pavilion on a visit to the Lincluden community on the outskirts of Dumfries
A compilation of the ideas contributed by people at Square Go for a future Dumfries were displayed in The Stove Café for further comment and discussion.
With grateful thanks to Sebastian Summers, Katie Anderson, Ross Campbell and Galina Walls for the photographs