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Last Updated: Monday, 26 November 2007, 11:00 GMT
Carbuncle 'crown' for Coatbridge
Coatbridge town centre
Coatbridge is the third Lanarkshire town to receive a Carbuncle
Coatbridge town centre in North Lanarkshire is Scotland's most dismal place according to the Carbuncle awards.

The less-than-coveted title is one of three handed out by the Prospect architecture magazine.

The casino at Glasgow's Springfield Quay got the award for worst building and Pollok's Silverburn Centre was voted worst planning decision.

Coatbridge is the third town in North Lanarkshire to be labelled a Carbuncle.

Nearby Cumbernauld has won the infamous "Plook on the Plinth" prize twice. Neighbouring Airdrie has also been honoured in the past.

Members of the public put forward their nominations for each category earlier this month, from which a panel of judges drew up a shortlist.

The final winners have been selected by a public vote.

Those at Prospect magazine should get out of their ivory tower and come and tour my Coatbridge and see it's a great place
Elaine Smith MSP
Coatbridge and Chryston

Prospect editor Penny Lewis said: "Coatbridge could be a great place, it has a proud history and plenty of people living close to its centre.

"However, poor planning decisions and uninspiring urban design and architecture has destroyed the character of the place."

Elaine Smith, MSP for Coatbridge and Chryston, told the BBC Scotland news website that the award was an "insult to the good people of the town".

She said: "I think the Carbuncle awards are particularly unhelpful for towns like Coatbridge that have risen from the ashes of their industrial past and really improved themselves.

"The people of Coatbridge are extremely friendly and proud of their industrial heritage and have worked hard to make the town a good place to live."

'Positive change'

The local politician also had a message for those behind the Carbuncle awards.

She said: "This is nothing more than a patronising publicity stunt. Those at Prospect magazine should get out of their ivory tower and come and tour my Coatbridge and see it's a great place."

The Carbuncles were set up in 2000 and are held every two years.

Organisers argue they stimulate debate and opinion and encourage local authorities to improve town centre planning.

However Councillor Thomas Maginnis, convener of North Lanarkshire's regeneration committee, said: "We do not believe the Carbuncle awards offer anything positive to the towns they choose to include.

"The council and its partners have invested tens of millions of pounds in Coatbridge town centre, and more is still on the way."

He added: "It's very easy to be critical. It's much harder to deliver positive change. But that's exactly what we are committed to doing."

VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Coatbridge residents have their say on the award



SEE ALSO
Coatbridge up for Carbuncle award
24 Oct 07 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Rebirth for 'dismal' town centre
11 Apr 06 |  Scotland
Officials condemn 'Carbuncle' tag
21 Oct 05 |  Scotland
'Plook' award shortlist announced
06 Oct 05 |  Scotland
Cumbernauld wins carbuncle award
21 Nov 01 |  Scotland

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