February 2013

The Search is on for Scotland’s Greenest Communities

Community groups across Scotland are being invited to show off their green credentials and enter a new national Greener Together Community Award scheme.

Chief Constable and NJPB Convener sign off with a positive message for the people of the Highlands and Islands

Today marked the final meeting of the Northern Joint Police Board before the transition to the single Police force (Police Scotland) at the beginning of April.

Highlands and Islands vote of confidence in policing and criminal justice services

The results of the 2012 Northern Constabulary community consultation survey aimed at gauging the public’s perception of multi agency services in the area, reveals an overwhelming affirmation of public satisfaction in police and criminal justice partners in the Highlands and Islands.

Public thanked for input into new vision for Thurso and Wick

Members of the Thurso and Wick communities have helped to develop a new vision for the towns by participating in events known as Charrettes.

Waste to Energy Plant, Invergordon – Council statement

The Highland Council has emphasised that the Council’s challenge in the Court of Session against a decision by a Reporter appointed by Scottish Ministers to grant planning permission for a major waste to energy plant at Invergordon is entirely separate from that being promoted by a neighbouring estate.

Tribute paid to Lochaber Council worker

Tribute has been paid to a member of staff of The Highland Council in Lochaber who died in a climbing accident on Ben Nevis on Monday.

Police name deceased following mountain incident on Raeburn's Buttress, Ben Nevis, Fort William

Police can confirm the details of the deceased following Monday's fatal mountain incident on Raeburn's Buttress on the North Face of Ben Nevis.

Highland Seashore Project launched

A new Seashore Wildlife Project was launched on Saturday (23 February) at the Highland Biodiversity Groups Networking Meeting in the Netley Centre, Inverness.

Chill out on Wacky Woolly Wednesday

School pupils, Council staff and Councillors are being invited to look out their most outrageous woolly jumper and take part in Wacky Woolly Wednesday on 6 March.

Scottish switching scheme launched in Highland

Highland residents have until Sunday 17 March to join in to secure a better deal from energy companies by buying energy together.

Council recognises success of two Highland Premier League football sides

The Highland Council Leaders have paid tribute to the “incredible” achievement of the two Highland sides that play in the Clydesdale Bank Scottish Premier League in sitting at the top of the table, behind Celtic.

Major-General Sir Hector Macdonald Memorial Service

Members of The Highland Council’s Dingwall and Seaforth Ward will be attending the Major-General Sir Hector Macdonald Memorial Service this weekend.

East Ross District Partnership Meets on Friday 1 March

The second meeting of the new East Ross District Partnership will take place at 9.30am on Friday 1 March in the Training Room at the County Community Hospital, Invergordon.

Council welcomes ground investigation works for start of A9 dualling.

The Highland Council welcomes Transport Scotland’s announcement today that a £1.3 million ground investigation contract is expected to be awarded early next month, for the dualling of the A9 Perth – Inverness road.

Council competition encourages Caithnessians to recycle more glass.

There’s still just enough time for householders to enter the Highland Council’s free competition to win a £20 voucher for The Thurso Cinema!

Inverness Leisure seeks community minded board member

Caledonia Community Leisure Limited, the Company which trades as “Inverness Leisure” is seeking a new Community Business Trustee to join their board when the current member Jim Cockburn retires from the Company in the summer.

Northern Joint Police Board member Brian Murphy digs first turf at Fort William's new police and ambulance station

Northern Joint Police Board member and councillor for Fort William and Ardnamurchan, Brian Murphy, was in Fort William today to cut the first turf of the new development.

Results of Community Council interim elections

Nominations were invited from 5 February to 20 February 2013 for persons seeking election to Community Councils serving Acharacle (Lochaber), Ferintosh (Black Isle), Holm (Inverness) and Lochbroom (West Ross).

First District Partnership meeting for Badenoch, Strathspey, Nairn and Ardersier.

Friday 8 March, 2013 will see the inauguration of the new Badenoch, Strathspey, Nairn and Ardersier District Partnership.

Welfare Reform briefing for Highland MPs

The Highland’s three MPs - Danny Alexander (Inverness Nairn Badenoch and Strathspey), Charles Kennedy, (Ross Skye and Lochaber) and John Thurso (Caithness Sutherland and East Ross) - attended a meeting of The Highland Council’s Welfare Reform Working Group today (Friday) to hear the Council’s concerns about welfare reform and ideas for action that may reduce the impact of change.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 22 February 2013

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Friday 22 February 2013.

Highland Council’s reassurance over provenance of school meals

Staff, parents and pupils in the Highlands are being reassured about the quality and safe consumption of the fresh meat and processed food used in school meals in the Highlands.

Council Leader speaks at EU conference.

Leader of The Highland Council, Councillor Drew Hendry will tomorrow (Friday 22 February 2013) participate as guest speaker and debate at a conference on “The Future of Funding the EU and EU Funding in Scotland”.

Motorists advised of temporary road closure for Inverness Campus works.

On Monday 25 February 2013 temporary traffic restrictions will be introduced on Caulfield Road North, Inverness.

Caithness councillor to step down

Highland Councillor Robert Coghill, who represents Landward Caithness, has given notice of his intention to resign, with effect from Thursday 28 February. Councillor Coghill, who helps run a farm at Halkirk, is standing down on medical advice.

Six groups invited to progress Community Challenge Fund bids

Six Highland community groups have been selected to progress bids for funding from The Highland Council’s new Community Challenge Fund, which will provide £1 million for community projects exploring new ways of delivering services at a local level.

Council invites Highland people to find out why Play Matters

For people where play is an important part of their work or local community, a seminar has been organised on Monday 4 March in Inverness.

Inaugural meeting of Inverness East District Partnership

The multi-agency Partnership will meet in full for the first time on Friday 1 March as part of the new ground-breaking arrangements under the Integrating Care in the Highlands partnership between The Highland Council and NHS Highland.

Police remind drivers with abnormal loads to use designated laybys following delays on Kessock Bridge today.

Shortly after 09:00 hours today (20 February 2013) two Heavy Goods Vehicles carrying abnormal loads crossed the Kessock Bridge after failing to stop at the designated Abnormal Load Laybys.

Kessock Bridge: Changes to traffic management

Important changes to the traffic management set up on the A9 southbound approach to Kessock Bridge are about to take place.

Ballifeary Residents Urged to Recycle

Residents of flats in Ballifeary are being encouraged to make use of their blue bins to recycle their paper, cardboard, cans and plastic bottles.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 20 February 2013.

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Wednesday 20 February 2013.

Kishorn Port masterplan and public open day

One of Scotland's leading sites looking to service the offshore renewables market is launching the second phase of its masterplanning process with a public consultation event.

Campus contractor prepares for bridge installation.

Inverness Campus contractor Morgan Sindall is working with Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) to ensure all final arrangements are in place before installing a new cycle and pedestrian bridge over the A9 in the coming weeks.

CnaG launches the 2013 Students’ Summer Placement Scheme

Up to 25 students will have the opportunity to spend the summer months working on the Comunn na Gàidhlig (CnaG) Summer Placement Scheme.

Councillors request Windfarm site visit

Today (Tuesday 19 February) The Highland Council’s South Planning Applications Committee voted to have a site visit before debating an application by Scottish & Southern Energy Renewables to erect 83 wind turbines on Garrogie Estate near Fort Augustus.

Do more online with The Highland Council

The Highland Council is making it easier for people to access council services and make payments by providing more of its business on the Internet.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 19 February 2013.

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of day 19 February 2013.

Landfill Community Fund applications approved.

Caithness Rugby Football Club are celebrating after their application for £10,000 from The Highland Council’s Landfill Community Fund was approved by the Caithness and Sutherland Area Committee.

Mid Ross Partnership update

The new Mid Ross District Partnership met for the first time on Friday 8th February.

Boost for Pulteneytown Advice Centre

At today’s meeting of The Highland Council Caithness and Sutherland Area Committee members awarded Pulteneytown People’s Project, Wick, £90,506 from the Deprived Area Fund which will be used to provide services to local people through the Advice Centre.

Local communities gear up for Wick and Thurso Charrettes

Primary and secondary pupils and students from the North Highland College are among the many people that are preparing to set out how they want their towns to be developed in the future.

Tribute paid to Skye nursery assistant.

Tribute has been paid to a nursery assistant at a Skye primary school who was killed on Saturday when she was struck by a rally car as she watched the Snowman Rally at Glenurquhart Forest, Balnain.

River Ness Flood Scheme: pedestrians and cyclists advised of pathway closure.

Pedestrians and cyclists are advised that the riverside footway between the Bowling Club in Riverside Street and Glebe Street, Inverness, will be closed from late today (Friday 15th February), re-opening late Friday 22 February.

17-year-old arrested in connection with a large fire at Dingwall's Royal Hotel

Following Police enquiries into the circumstances of a large fire at the Royal Hotel, Dingwall on 11th February, a 17 year old male has been arrested in connection with the incident.

Public sector bodies and housing associations invited to clue-up on Renewable Heat Incentive, reduce carbon emissions and cut costs

A free seminar on 4 March 2013 is set to show Scotland's public sector how switching to renewable woodfuel heating can help them to cut heating costs and reduce their carbon emissions.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 14 February 2013

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Thursday 14 February 2013 are as follows:

Crane incident closes Kessock Bridge for 45 minutes

At 10 am today (Wednesday), a mobile crane became entangled in the temporary barrier at the Kessock Bridge resurfacing works.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 13 February 2013

The Highland Council’s snow clearing / gritting route policies and area maps are online for 2012/13 at www.highland.gov.uk/gritting.

Lunchtime wildlife talks

The Highland Council is pleased to announce that it is running a series of free, short talks on Highland Biodiversity as part of the Year of Natural Scotland 2013.

Be your best ‘Safer Highland’ Rock Challenge

More than 315 schools throughout the United Kingdom took part in last year’s UK Rock Challenge competition involving upwards of 25,000 young people.

Interim elections for four Highland Community Councils

Nominations are invited from persons seeking election to Community Councils serving Acharacle (Lochaber), Ferintosh (Black Isle), Holm (Inverness) and Lochbroom (West Ross).

Police prepare for crackdown on speeding motorists - ACPOS

The head of Northern Constabulary's Road Policing Unit is urging drivers to cut their speed on the roads and drive within the law as officers prepare for a new crackdown on those who fail to heed the warnings.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 12 February 2013

The Highland Council’s snow clearing / gritting route policies and area maps are online for 2012/13 at www.highland.gov.uk/gritting.

Kessock Bridge: drivers praised but warned against complacency

Traffic flows on the Kessock Bridge have been better than expected today, with delays reaching 20 minutes at worst.

Update of Fire at Royal Hotel Dingwall

Emergency services are continuing to deal with a building fire at the Royal Hotel in Dingwall.

Fire at Royal Hotel, Dingwall

Housing and Property Service officers of The Highland Council are securing alternative accommodation for 9 homeless clients who had to be evacuated from the Royal Hotel, Dingwall, when fire broke out overnight at the House of Multiple Occupation.

Millburn pupils clean up during SCOPE litter campaign

The Highland Council’s school litter project finished last week at Millburn Academy with volunteers and local businesses getting behind the week long campaign collecting over 17 kg of waste, half of which was able to be recycled, including 115 plastic bottles and 60 drink cans.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 11 February 2013

The Highland Council’s snow clearing / gritting route policies and area maps are online for 2012/13 at www.highland.gov.uk/gritting.

Dunnet Area Sculpture Proposals, Drop-In Session and Exhibition

As part of the Planning and Development Service’s £100,000 upgrade of its existing visitor facilities at Dunnet Beach and Dunnet Head, Sculptors have been commissioned to design Interpretive artworks to help promote these distinctive and unique places, and to raise their profile.

First Inverness West District Partnership meeting

Friday 22 February 2013 will see the inauguration of the new Inverness West District Partnership

Dingwall Academy to Host Wildlife Volunteers

A host of wildlife volunteers from across Easter Ross and the Highlands will converge on Dingwall Academy next Wednesday evening (20 February).

B9006 Construction of Culloden Road widening and new access to the Inverness campus.

As part of the construction works currently taking place on the east side of the A9 at Beechwood, there is now new traffic management in place on the B9006.

Highland shares in extra £1m funding assistance for harbour repairs

The Highland Council has welcomed news that it is to receive up to £150,000 worth of assistance from the Scottish Government towards the costs of repairing two East Ross harbours, which were badly damaged in the storms of 14/15 December last year.

Healthy returns on Inverness Common Good Fund

Members of The Highland Council’s City of Inverness Area Committee have been advised that Inverness Common Good Fund is performing well, despite the challenging economic climate.

New station arrives on time for Conon Bridge

The Highland Council has warmly welcomed today’s opening of Conon Bridge railway station and the return of rail services to the community more than five decades after the original station closed.

River Ness Flood Alleviation Scheme update

Works on the River Ness Flood Alleviation Scheme are progressing, with current activity focused on Huntly Street and Glebe Street.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 8 February 2013.

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Friday 8 February 2013.

Council Tax freeze for sixth year in a row

At a special meeting today (Thursday) The Highland Council has agreed to freeze the Council Tax for a sixth successive year and confirmed a budget of £548.436 million for 2013-14.

A9 Kessock Bridge – Introduction of the new Traffic Signals on the three approaches to the Longman Roundabout.

The new traffic lights on the three main approaches to the Longman Roundabout

Highland Council winter road condition reports for Thursday 7 February 2013.

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Thursday 7 February 2013.

Interim Election of Holm Community Council, Inverness

Residents in the Holm area of Inverness are being encouraged to bolster the ranks of the Community Council. An interim election is taking place to fill the four vacant positions from a total membership of nine.

Proposed renewal of the Business Improvement District for Inverness

Ballot papers for the Inverness Business Improvement District (BID) renewal election will arrive on the doorsteps of 676 voters in 447 premises today (Friday).

New temporary site identified for coach parking in Inverness city centre

A new location has been identified in Inverness for a temporary drop off/pick-up point for coaches carrying tourists and cruise liner passengers.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for Wednesday 6 February 2013.

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Wednesday 6 February 2013.

City forum discusses mitigation plans for Kessock Bridge resurfacing

More than 80 people attended the Inverness City Transport Forum on Monday (4 February) at Inverness Town House to hear presentations by Transport Scotland and The Highland Council on measures being taken to cushion the impact of the Kessock Bridge resurfacing and the River Ness Flood Alleviation Scheme.

People in Highland encouraged to be green on the move

Thanks to an £54,373 investment from Zero Waste Scotland, new recycling bins are set to appear across Highland, making it easier to recycle away from the home.

Council backs regeneration of Inverness city centre

The Leader of The Highland Council Drew Hendry and Leader of the City of Inverness Area Committee have given an assurance that tackling anti-social behaviour in Inverness City Centre is a top priority for the Council.

Wick High School hits litter collection target and receives £750

The Highland Council’s school litter project came to Wick last week with volunteers and local businesses getting behind the campaign at Wick High School.

A9 Kessock Bridge – Introduction of permanent route changes

The commissioning process of the new traffic management arrangements to reduce delays as the result of the resurfacing of the Kessock Bridge from 11 February is now underway.

£750 for Glen Urquhart High School as they clean up during week long SCOPE litter campaign

The Highland Council’s school litter project came to Drumnadrochit last week with volunteers and local businesses getting behind the campaign at Glen Urquhart High School.

First Mid Ross District Partnership meeting

The new Mid Ross District Partnership will meet for the first time on Friday 8th February.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for Tuesday 5 February 2013.

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council s Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Tuesday 5 February 2013.

Nairn Academy takes part in SCOPE litter campaign

The Highland Council’s school litter project came to Nairn last week with volunteers and local businesses getting behind the campaign at Nairn Academy.

Travellers are encouraged to be prepared and stay safe during severe weather.

Sever weather warnings are in place over the next two days and it is expected that blizzard conditions will cause significant disruption across the region, particularly affecting higher routes including the A9.

Council warns Highland businesses – don’t be caught out by scammers.

Highland Council’s Trading Standards are warning all Highland businesses to be on their guard against rogue ‘charity’ publishers and operatives that use deliberately misleading sales talk to sell advertising space over the phone or by email or text.

Last chance to submit nominations for Scottish Education Awards 2013

People in the Highlands are being urged to enter local schools, nurseries or individuals into the Scottish Education Awards 2013 before the deadline for submissions on Friday 22 February 2013

Milestone reached in delivering advice to support major developments in Highland

A pioneering advice service from The Highland Council planners has proved to be popular with the developers in Highland.

Highland Council winter road condition reports for 4 February 2013.

Road condition and gritting treatment reports by The Highland Council’s, Transport, Environmental and Community Services for the morning of Monday 4 February 2013.

A9 Kessock Bridge – Route changes in advance of Major Works.

Work starts on the major refurbishment of the A9 Kessock Bridge on Monday 11th February 2013 for 17 weeks.

New guide published to help communities manage funds

Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has published a guide providing advice to community organisations for managing funds generated from renewable energy projects.