With just 39 shopping days until Christmas - yes that’s a fact - at least some Falkirk town centre traders would have been grateful to hear that the timetable to improve the pavements and streets in the area has been upgraded.
Those paying business rates in Manor Street, Kirk Wynd and Bank Street will be delighted the upheaval they have had to put up with over these last few months is at an end a good few weeks earlier than they were entitled to expect.
Of course, like most things, where there is an upside, there is invariably a down side, and this time it will probably leave their neighbours in Vicar Street ruing their location because it’s their turn for the diggers and dozers to park up outside.
From the start of this week, their street has been a no-go area for cars and a challenge for pedestrians to negotiate and - apart for a few days respite between December 23 and January 8 when the contractors are on holiday - will have to put up with the noise and disruption until February 21.
The people behind the Townscape Heritage Initiative which is funding these essential public realm works have apparently come in for some flack for not keeping the shopkeepers up to speed with their plans to resurface the streets and footpaths.
Given the scale of the project, and bearing in mind the other things that are going on as part of the wider THI scheme, that was probably inevitable.
It’s the ‘you can’t have an omelette without breaking eggs’ thing isn’t it?
Still, possibly what they should all be focussing on is that when it’s all done the town centre will look a while lot better and be a lot more attractive to shoppers.