by Colin Campbell
ALONG the Inverness riverside we now have the cheering spectacle of Eden Court theatre coming back to life again. Although the entertainment and activities it can offer are severely limited, it is fully lit up, ablaze with lights and a darkened shell no longer.
Visually, that makes a difference to the riverside. For months the theatre has been a dismal sight. Now it is a cheering one.
And any signs of revival and normality are more welcome than they have ever been before.
It is not just tripping the light fantastic to say that in this uniquely difficult winter, where everything that brought people together in celebration has been cancelled, we should be using the uplifting powers of illumination to maximum effect.
What other alternatives do we have to try to give the city centre some kind of special midwinter festive feel? Absolutely none.
All the more reason to press for the Riverlights programme to be given the go-ahead by Inverness councillors, some of whom have been stalling on the proposal.
What is being proposed would lighten and brighten the centre, would make it a more appealing and welcoming place to visit and would lift morale and mood.
The money would come from funds already saved from the cancellation of the Winter Festival so overall not an extra penny would be spent.
The Riverlights programme would involve “eyecatching light shows and projections mounted at city buildings and locations”.
That could involve Inverness Castle, Abertaff House, Inverness Town House, St Andrew’s Cathedral, Inverness Museum and Art Gallery, the Northern Meeting Park, and Eden Court Theatre.
This would be more than a lights show. It would in its way be a fightback against this damn virus and the stifling grip of glaur and gloom it threatens to exert on Inverness this winter.
There should be a clear message sent to those councillors who are dithering over the precise detail of what is planned.
We need something novel, imaginative and different in the city centre, even if it is never repeated. We desperately need something to even partly compensate for all the festive events that have been lost.
So enough of the “Christmas is cancelled” drone of despair.
Unleash the power of light across the city centre through the Riverlights programme and in the weeks ahead help drive out the dark shadow of the plague.