The loss of a valued colleague

It is with great sadness that I share the news of the passing of a valued colleague from our Education and Children’s Services team.

Debbie Moir, who served with distinction as Head Teacher of Hanover Street School and most recently as a Quality Improvement Officer after being seconded to that role last year, had been receiving treatment for cancer and we have been informed of her death this week.

Our thoughts are with Debbie’s family and on behalf of all at the Council I am sending my deepest sympathies to them, offering the support you would expect at this difficult time.

My condolences also go to all who knew Debbie – not only as a knowledgeable and committed colleague and teacher but as a friend. The loss has been felt throughout the education services and beyond.

Debbie’s contribution to education in the city will not be forgotten and those who worked closely with her have fond memories of a very caring person who put children at the centre of everything she did, determined to ensure the best outcomes for young people. An infectious laugh, quick wit and ability to put others at ease were just some of the many other qualities which shone through and which will be greatly missed.

SPECTRA wins Festival of the Year Award

Congratulations to all the teams responsible (City Promotion & Events; Culture, Partnership & Policy), and all colleagues, volunteers and partners who made SPECTRA 2017 – Aberdeen’s festival of light – such a success.  The festival has now won Large Event of the Year and Team of the Year at The Drum Scottish Event Awards 2017.

SPECTRA is a relatively young festival, but had around 65,000 visitors in 2017 and was up against some long-established events.  Well done and we’re all looking forward to SPECTRA 2018.

Fantastic Success at Beautiful Scotland Awards

An absolutely fantastic night for Aberdeen at the Beautiful Scotland awards!

Our list of winners:-

  • City Category winner and Gold Medal, and Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society Award for our horticulture and green spaces.
  • Powis, Gold Medal and Residential Community category winners.
  • Dyce in Bloom, Gold Medal and Best Urban Community category winners.
  • Brighter Bucksburn, Silver Medal.
  • Cove in Bloom, Silver Gilt Medal.
  • Aberdeen Inspired, Silver Gilt Medal and Visit Scotland Award for Tourism.

The awards are well deserved and testament to all the hard work the team and our many (ever growing) community partners put in, not just to the campaign but to everything they do that goes towards making Aberdeen the amazing place it is. Everyone involved should be very proud of what they’ve achieved. Roll on Britain in Bloom, Champion of Champions!



Barcelona Attack

My thoughts this morning are on yesterday’s terrible attacks in Barcelona and Cambrils. After yet another act of senseless terrorism we, like the rest of the world, can only express our sorrow and sympathy for the victims, our solidarity with the people of Spain and remain vigilant to the risks of terrorism.

Manchester Attack

My thoughts are with everyone affected by last night’s appalling news from Manchester. The targeting of this latest attack is particularly shocking and heart breaking. I know we will all feel the grief and sadness felt by the people of Manchester.

We are liaising with colleagues in Police Scotland. Whilst, this morning, there is no intelligence to suggest an increased threat to Scotland, we must all remain vigilant and mindful of the threat posed by terrorism, reporting anything suspicious.

London Attack

Like everyone else, my thoughts today are with the families of those who have lost their lives, and with everyone affected, in yesterday’s terror attack in London.  Whilst we are always aware of the threat, and work to prevent and respond to it, when attacks do happen the human cost is always profoundly shocking and heart breaking.

For us in Aberdeen, whilst the level of threat has not changed today, the attack is yet another reminder that we all need to remain vigilant and be mindful of the risks posed by terrorism.

Team Aberdeen 

I’m delighted that we’ve lit Marischal College in support of the Dons ahead of their trip to Hampden for the League Cup Final. 

Even our Celtic-supporting colleagues will appreciate that it’s only appropriate that the Council gets behind our home town team as they pursue more silverware. 


Anti-bullying work in the spotlight

The Council is committed to ensuring that the people who work here do so in an environment which provides dignity and respect to everyone and is free from bullying and harassment.

During Anti-Bullying Week, running from November 14th to 18th colleagues from the HR team have scheduled a number of activities to provide information and resources to support our aims in this incredibly important area.

I am certain that we all share the desire to ensure that the Council provides a working environment where everyone feels respected, valued and understood.

The week will also provide an opportunity to raise funds for Stonewall and the Grampian Autistic Society at the drop-in sessions in Marischal College.

Further information on the programme can be found on the Zone: Anti-bullying

On Friday 18 November we’ll mark the end of the week with a ‘Wear Blue Day’, the official colour of Anti-Bullying Week. All staff who can are encouraged to wear blue to show support and Marischal College will also be lit blue that evening.