THERE'S a need for more shops in Helensburgh - and shoppers want to see increased clothing and food options on the High Street.

We asked Advertiser readers this week what new shop would they like to see open in the town.

There were more than 100 responses, with food and clothing the clear front-runners.

These are similar to surveys by Helensburgh Community Council about the specific empty plot of land between West Clyde Street and the new Helensburgh Leisure Centre.

Although the majority of respondants don't want a large retailer at the site, there was a desire from residents for more and diverse shops locally.

A number of people wanted an Aldi or Lidl, as well as some calling for M&S, and even Harrods.

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And clothing shops, and especially for men, got a mention as well as more affordable outlets such as Primark.

The most popular response to our question was actully not a shop at all.

"Harry N Selina Thompson" wrote: "Not a shop, but a workshop for teens to learn different skills that schools don't teach them, like mortgages, council tax, moving out, home ownership, basic electrics, plumbing, painting... The possibilities are endless."

"I think that's a brilliant idea," replied Morgan Bullingham.

Others called for a soft play area or a McDonalds, both to cater to children. Others suggested a KFC, an arcade or bowling to entertain youngsters.

In the same vein, Lorna Arroll said: "Just a super enormous concrete skate park like they have in Kelvingrove so kids and adults will come at weekends to hang out."

Jill Campbell said: "Definitely agree with below people suggesting a clothing store. Otherwise to buy new clothes it involves a major trek to Clydebank/Singer for people without transport."

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And others called for a return of previous and recently closed facilities.

Rosie Montgomery wrote: "What Helensburgh needs is the general shop at Churchill to reopen. If you live up there with no car, then it must be a right pain in the neck."

Other suggestions included a running or sports shop, a dry cleaners, shoe shop, and a Five Guys burger outlet.

Irene Reeny Speedie cast the net wide and said: "A Next, a mobile phone dealer, a Brewdog, a White Stuff, a Mango, a Zara, a Pandora, etc."

There were also calls for Helensburgh pier to be brought to life.

Stewart Macdonald added his opposition to retail in front of the leisure centre. And he urged maximising the attraction locally for visitors from cruise ships to Greenock before going off to Loch Lomond.

And he wrote: "Let’s rid ourselves of the negativity of those responsible for development of the Helensburgh Pier area (and the opportunity the influx cruise liner passengers could bring) and the lower part of Loch Lomond - presently the not so Bonnie Banks.

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"If public funds are in short supply, the private money is there for the taking, given the right environment and public bodies’ attitudes towards investors.

"This is written while visiting the beautiful town of Pitlochry - which has made the town a honey pot for tourists, and the income it brings to the area."