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 yesterday (Monday 18 February).
The money will go towards building a pavilion with four changing rooms and associated facilities. Currently the club use a pre-fabricated hut gifted to them soon after the club was formed in 1962 which is now coming towards the end of its useful life. The new pavilion will allow for two games to be played at the same time and will have facilities for both male and female players.
Visitors to Handa Island, one of the largest seabird colonies in north-west Europe just off the Sutherland coast will benefit too as Councillors also approved an application by the Scottish Wildlife Trust for £10,000 to be used to upgrade footpaths and improve drainage.
The Island comes alive each summer as some 100,000 seabirds gather here to breed, including guillemots, razorbills, kittiwakes and small numbers of puffins on the cliffs. Arctic and great skuas nest on the moor, some very close to the trail. Despite its remote location as many as 7,000 people visit Handa between April and September each year.
As a landfill operator, the Council distributes its Landfill Community Fund to local conservation, biodiversity, public amenity and park projects.
Area Leader Councillor Deirdre Mackay said: “This year our Landfill Community Fund will generate £75,000 which makes it a good source of funding for projects. I know that the Caithness Rugby Club have done a lot of development work and membership is growing so the new pavilion will make a big difference.
“Handa Island is a key tourist attraction and visitors contribute significantly to the local economy of North West Sutherland. We want to encourage visitors but it is also important to make sure we protect the vegetation and make sure breeding birds are not disturbed. Making the paths more robust and hard-wearing will give visitors better accessibility and at the same time give protection to the birds and vegetation.”
For further information about the Landfill Community Fund is available by contacting Neil Downie, Transport, Environmental and Community Services, Council HQ, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness Tel: 01463 702651 email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Application forms are available to download from The Highland Council’s website.