Projects approved for capital discretionary funding

Two projects have been approved for capital discretionary funding by the Council’s Resources Committee.

Members approved a contribution of £100,000 over 2 years towards the Falls of Shin Community Project, subject to a full funding package being in place. The money will support the development of a new Visitor Centre and Restaurant at the Falls of Shin in Sutherland. The previous visitor centre was destroyed by a fire in May 2013, resulting in the loss of seasonal jobs and tourist income to the area.

On behalf of Ward Members, Cllr Deirdre Mackay welcomed approval of funding for the project. She said: “The Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust are really achieving things and making a significant difference to the community. Tribute must be paid to the focussed work of KoSDT officers and also the energy and commitment of its Board of Directors.

“The Falls of Shin project will be a game changer for the area and I am delighted that Highland Council is offering full backing in the form of this funding award.”

Members also agreed the award of a maximum of £28,763 from the Capital Discretionary fund to help reconstruct the Merkinch Welfare Hall in Inverness, which aims to provide social and economic benefit to people in the community.

Merkinch Enterprise are undertaking to restore the Hall and convert it into a mixed use community facility, with a boxing gym and fitness room with office space at a total cost of around £810,000.

The funding will be advanced only in the event that existing funders are not agreeable to increasing their retrospective contributions to meet the stated increase in project costs and council funding would be conditional on other funding being in place.

Cllr Richard Laird welcomed the funding approval saying: “This project will bring a long-derelict landmark building back into productive use. It is an important regeneration project for Merkinch and the Council's decision today should ensure it happens.”

Chair of Resources Committee, Cllr Bill Fernie said: “Both projects would deliver significant social and economic benefits to their local communities.”

26 Nov 2015
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