THE NEXT ORDINARY MEETING OF THE GARVE & DISTRICT COMMUNITY COUNCIL
WILL BE HELD
ON TUESDAY 4 JULY 2017
IN ACHNASHEEN VILLAGE HALL
Members of the public are very welcome to attend Community Council meetings and take part in our discussions under the guidence of the Chairman.
1. Introductions and Apologies
2. Declarations of interest
3. Chairman’s comments
4. Approval of the minutes of the last ordinary meeting held on Monday 12 June 2017
5. Matters arising from the minutes
Matters to be discussed include Highland Council updates, Development Company and Community Ceilidh.
6. Police report
7. Treasurer’s report
9. AOB from Community Council members
10. AOB from members of the public
11. Screening reports, scoping reports and consultations
At the time of writing, no screening reports, scoping reports or consultations have been received by the Community Council.
12. Building warrants, planning issues and licensing issues
At the time of writing, no building warrants, planning applications or licensing issues have been received by the Community Council.
13. Dates of future meetings
(Ordinary meetings are usually held on the first Tuesday of the month unless stated otherwise)
Tuesday 1 August 2017, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 5 September 2017, 7.00pm, Achnasheen Village Hall
Tuesday 3 October 2017, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 7 November 2017, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 5 December 2017, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 9 January 2018, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 6 February 2018, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 6 March 2018, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 3 April 2018, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 1 May 2018, 7.00pm, Achnasheen Village Hall
Tuesday 5 June 2018, AGM followed by an ordinary meeting, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall. Old minute books will be available to view.
Issued at 4.00pm on Thursday 22 June 2017.
DRAFT Minutes of the Garve & District Community Council Annual General Meeting held on Monday 12 June 2017 at 7.00pm in Garve Village Hall are now available in the library section of this website.
DRAFT Minutes of the Garve & District Community Council ordinary meeting
held on Monday 12 June 2017 in Garve Village Hall
Community Council members present: Kenny Maclean (Chairman), Jennifer Haslam (Secretary), Eliza Leslie Melville (Treasurer), Bob Moir, Caroline Gamble and co-opted member Moragh Wylie.
Also present: Val MacIver (Platform PR), Former Cllr Richard Greene and four members of the public.
Apologies: Co-opted member Joe Stewart, Cllr Dr Ian Cockburn, Former Cllr Audrey Sinclair, Fiona Milligan (Infinergy), Martin Macphee (Eneco), Grant Folley and Andy Russell (EDF), June Ross and Katrina Taylor (HC), Robbie Bain (Ward Manager) and Jenny MacPherson (Platform PR).
The Chairman opened the meeting at 8.20pm. This meeting along with the Annual General Meeting which took place earlier this evening was due to have taken place on Tuesday 6 June 2017 but due to local circumstances, Community Council members felt it was better to postpone our meetings until tonight.
Declarations of Interest - Eliza Leslie Melville and Moragh Wylie both declared an interest in the Infinergy project. The Chairman declared a non-financial interest in a planning application. Community Council members confirmed that they had read all draft minutes, consultations and planning applications due to be discussed tonight before the start of this meeting.
Chairman’s comments – Thanks to Jennifer Haslam for providing the tea and biscuits between tonight’s meetings. Elections to the Highland Council took place on Thursday 4 May 2017. Cllr Dr Ian Cockburn and Cllr Biz Campbell were re-elected to Ward 5 – Wester Ross, Strathpeffer & Lochalsh. The Ward boundary remains the same. Cllr Richard Greene was not re-elected and Cllr Dr Audrey Sinclair did not stand again for election. We send our thanks to Richard and Audrey for all their help over the years. Cllr Derek Macleod from Gairloch and Cllr Kate Stephen from Lochcarron were elected. We wish them well. We have sent the new Councillor’s all our minutes from this year to help them get up to speed! The Highland Council’s new governance arrangements are based on three Strategic Committees instead of five. All G&DCC agendas, draft minutes and dates of future meetings are available on the Community Council website www.community-council.org.uk/GarveandDistrict or by contacting the Secretary on email@example.com or at Broadoaks, Grudie Bridge, IV23 2QB. They are also available on the Achnasheen Village notice board or via the Community Council emailing list. Additional copies of the draft minutes are available in Garve Post Office so members of the community can take them away with them. The Community Council website receives around 150 hits per month and we have 69 people on the emailing list. We have learnt that some people are finding the writing a bit small on the hard copies of the draft minutes. This will be improved. Another report is that the minutes are too long, contain too much detail. Other verbal feedback received welcomes the detail, especially as there is no newsletter anymore … you can’t please everyone!
Approval of minutes of the last ordinary meeting held on Tuesday 2 May 2017 in Achnasheen Village Hall were proposed by Caroline Gamble and seconded by Moragh Wylie.
Matters arising – Eneco – Martin Macphee has been in touch to say that the Lochluichart Windfarm will not be generating any power this week because of scheduled SSE Grid Transformer maintenance works at the Corriemoillie Substation. We thank Martin for the update.
EDF – Val MacIver confirmed tidying up on site continues as reported last month. EDF Education & Training panel – more details are available at www.foundationscotland.org.uk/programmes/corriemoillie The Fund opened to applications on Friday 19 May 2017, with the closing date for the first round of applications on Monday 19 June 2017. Decisions on awards will be made in July 2017. Sue Tarr confirmed she believed she was on the panel and induction training for panelists will be held soon.
Mess opposite Grudie Power Station has not improved. Photos were sent to SSE and the matter is in hand.
Infinergy – Eliza Leslie Melville and Moragh Wylie both declared an interest in the Infinergy project and left the room at 8.25pm. The Chairman has been advised that the public open days pencilled in for later this month are to be postponed as the design process for Lochluichart Windfarm Extension two is going to take a little longer than first anticipated. Infinergy still intend to send newsletters to all properties in the Community Council area advising them of the proposed extension and when the public open days will actually be held. Eliza Leslie Melville and Moragh Wylie then returned to the meeting at 8.30pm.
Highland Council updates – Garve bus shelter is still in need of repair despite reports that panels had been ordered by the Highland Council however, Cllr Kate Stephen has confirmed that measurements for replacement panels were taken on Tuesday 6 June 2017. A new bus shelter was installed in Lochcarron last week.
Layby Bins – a bin has again gone missing from one of the layby’s in our area. The Chairman has reported this incident to the Highland Council. Unfortunately, the Highland Council can’t sustain the number of bins that are going missing/stolen from our Community Council area. The Secretary suggested a different colour bin should be placed in layby’s so that if one is seen at a house, people know it’s a layby bin. A member of the public noted that the stand locks may need servicing. The suggestions will be passed onto Cllr Cockburn.
Information Shelters – The Highland Council still hope to build the Information Shelters this year in Achnasheen, Lochcarron and Braemore. They want to build all three at the same time but there are legal issues at one of the sites. Once this is resolved, the project can move forward. A member of the public asked what is a “P” sign indicated. “Parking” according to the Highway Code.
Cllr Kate Stephen is aware via the recent Highland Council election campaign and through our Community Needs Survey that some people in the area would like mains water. Page four of the full Community Needs Survey report states … “while the majority of respondents feel they have a good quality water supply there is a significant minority who don’t.” Cllr Stephen is happy to make new enquires to see if anything is now possible but there has always been a question over costs, demand (not everyone would want to be connected to the mains water) and whether the local supply could cope with an increase in demand.
Cllr Stephen is also aware that some residents would like to see a 40mph speed limit through Lochluichart. Cllr Stephen is happy to make new enquires to see if anything is now possible but she is aware from experience that to introduce a speed limit is not easy. Bob Moir noted that when he lived at Mossford, it was a battle just to get the “slow” signs that remain in place to this day.
In the last few days, the Secretary has noticed some white lines have been re-painted between Gorstan and Grudie. Bob Moir noted that the 20mph road marking and white lines in the car park outside this Hall had still not been re-painted here in Garve. Cllr Cockburn will be reminded. Richard Greene noted that some sections of road might not get white lined if they are due to be surface dressed first. A member of the public has noticed black cables across the road. These cables have been located in several locations in the area and count the number of vehicles using the road. The devices can tell if it is a car or lorry by the distance between axles.
A890 Stromeferry Bypass – although this section of road is out with our area, we take an interest as it affects both local residents and tourists alike. The Highland Council has appointed Geo-Rope Ltd to undertake maintenance works to the rock face. Works are planned to begin on Monday 10 July 2017 for around 8 weeks approximately 1km west of the avalanche shelter. The works will require traffic management on the single-track road which may require short road closures.
Flooding on the trunk road in Garve - an on-site meeting between Community Council members (Bob & Jennifer), Cllr Cockburn and Network Rail representatives took place on the morning of Wednesday 31 May 2017. BEAR was unable to attend. It was confirmed that a new drain has now been dug above the railway so water flows into existing drains instead of down the embankment. Network Rail hope this will resolve the issue. BEAR have again been out with the Gully Sucker to ensure all road drains are clear and road edges cleared. It was noted the stone wall appeared damaged recently.
Network Rail issues – Bob and Jennifer also took the opportunity at the on-site meeting to discuss other issues of concern. Railway fencing east of Garve – (Ref 170213-000380). This fence between the road and railway will be kept maintained by Network Rail. There is no room for a metal barrier between the road and railway. Network Rail acknowledged that you could have a team of workers there every day and someone would still go into the fence. Garve Railway Station Gate – a catch will be installed on the open gate. Garve Railway Yard – Contractors do have a responsibility to keep the yard clean and tidy. Our concerns will be passed on. Garve Railway Station Bridge – as previously advised, the bridge is inspected every six months and is structurally sound despite appearances. What appears to be spots of primer have recently been applied to the bridge. When the bridge does need to be worked on, it would be taken away to a foundry. Pictures of both Achnasheen and Garve bridges have been taken by the Chairman for our own records. Garve Railway Station Car park sign – this suggestion will be passed on. Both Bob and Jennifer thought the meeting had been worthwhile. Network Rail had been understanding of the views expressed and took on board points made and would pass on any issues to Scotrail if necessary.
We have learnt in the last few days that two cyclists have fallen off their bikes at the Garve level crossing. At least one of them has admitted on social media that they did notice the sign advising them to dismount.
Phonebox removal – press reports appear to confirm that the Achanalt and Aultguish phoneboxes and telephones will be retained. The Garve phonebox and telephone will be removed in due course.
Relocation of Lochluichart Postbox – Jake Diamont from Royal Mail writes … “there has been a discrepancy on who owns the land where we are planning to install the postbox which has regrettably caused a slight delay with the installation. Our senior collections manager is still liaising with the local council, who are performing statutory ground searches. I anticipate that this job will be completed six weeks from today.” (Monday 5 June 2017).
Community Ceilidh – We received word on Friday 19 May 2017 from Carol Smith, Company Secretary at the LCT that our application for £774.50 had been granted in full. Therefore, Garve & District Community Council are again holding a Community Ceilidh for everybody (all ages) in the Community in Garve Village Hall on Saturday 19 August 2017 from 8.00pm until 11.00pm. Doors will open at 7.30pm. Music will once again be provided by “The Captain Stupendous Ceilidh Band”, back by popular demand! Soup and hotdogs will be available from around 9.00pm and those attending are welcome to BYOB and plastic glasses. As the capacity for this event will be 60, FREE tickets will need to be obtained on a first come first served basis from any Community Council member by Monday 7 August 2017. No ticket will mean no entry on the night. A raffle will be drawn at the end of the night raising funds for Lucky2BHere who supply Defibrillators and give life support training. Donations for prizes would be welcomed which can be handed in on the night. There will also be a bottle stall raising funds for the Garve & District Community Council funds. A flier will be hand delivered by Community Council members to every house in the area in due course. All fliers also appear on the “CC News” page of the Community Council website.
The Garve & District Development Company – became a registered Company on Tuesday 9 May 2017 (565505). The Chairman wished to place on record his thanks to Caroline for her help as a fellow Founding Director and Jennifer for her help with the administration and to all the Community Council members for their support. Applying to become a member of the new company is already underway after a flier was delivered to every house in the Community Council area. Membership application forms were available at this meeting and are also available in Garve PO and on the Community Council website. The Founding Directors are following the same process used when the original membership of the LCT was established in November 2011. There are currently 32 ordinary members and one associate member, all of whom have a copy of the articles of association. A call for Member Director nominations went out to members on Tuesday 6 June 2017. Some members of the public felt that there should be more community involvement in the process, an opportunity to discuss the future direction of the Company. Community Council members felt there had been community involvement ever since the community indicated it wanted a Development Company last summer in the Community Needs Survey. There had been two sets of fliers this year to every house in the Community Council area, a public consultation over the articles and the item had been discussed at every Community Council meeting this year and minuted accordingly with advice taken from Development Trusts Association Scotland (DTAS) and Robbie Bain, Ward Manager. Members of the Company have been kept updated. Both Caroline and Kenny (the founding Directors) welcomed the feedback but felt a public meeting would be better after 23 June 2017 once it was known if any member wished to be a Director.
Val MacIver left the meeting at 9.40pm and was thanked for attending.
Defibrillators – All five Defibrillators have now been installed in our community at Garve Village Hall, Inchbae Lodge Inn, Aultguish Inn, Lochluichart Church of Scotland and Achnasheen Village Hall. Emergency services including the local Mountain Rescue teams, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire & Rescue Service and the Scottish Ambulance Service have been informed along with life support trained members of the Community. The Community Council website, Robbie Bain and all four Ward Councillors have all been updated accordingly. Carol Smith, Company Secretary at the LCT has offered to put a note on the LCT website and social media page to help spread the word. Several media outlets have carried this story. As the project is now complete, the Chairman will fill in the LCT Feedback form.
Wester Ross Biosphere – A question was raised about membership. Natasha Hutchison has confirmed that local businesses and local groups including Community Council’s based within the Biosphere area are very welcome to join. They are unable to accept members outside the Biosphere area at this time, but those people can follow developments on social media or the website - www.westerrossbiosphere.com There is a possibility that those from outside the Biosphere area may be accepted as members in the future. The Biosphere have teamed up with groups in nine different European countries to access a share of 1.5 million Euros for a project that aims to boost tourism in an environmentally-friendly way.
2017 Joint Community Council meeting – following feedback from other Community Councils, the joint meeting will now be left until the autumn.
Police report – Another serious accident took place at Gorstan Junction on Sunday 14 May 2017 involving two vehicles. This is the second accident this year at the Junction. Press reports inform us that an individual who drove at around 60mph through roadworks where there was a temporary 30mph speed limit in place on the A832 just east of Achnasheen has been fined £75 and their licence endorsed with nine penalty points after being found guilty of careless driving at excessive speed. Up to six workmen were carrying out repairs on the road at the time of the incident. A caravan appears to have been abandoned in a layby at Loch Chullin. Another caravan appears to have been abandoned in a layby in Achnashellach. The Police are aware of both caravans.
Treasurers report – The Defibrillator fund was £13,020.00 minus £24.00 and £20.00 Hall Hires, £10,000 for the five Defibrillators, £2,700 Fraser Mackenzie electrical = £276.00 The Treasurer’s account is minus £40.00 Hall Hire, £29.59 ink, £22.98 ink and £8.04 postage. Income from LCT £250 to be passed onto the Development Company’s new board once elected plus £774.50 for the Ceilidh. All benches have now been installed so an invoice from John Grant will be due shortly along with an invoice for tonight’s Hall hire.
Audited accounts for the last financial period (1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017) are available on the Community Council website and at the Community Council meetings.
Correspondences - Correspondences received by Email - ePlanning – new planning applications at 28 April 2017; Uisdean Menzies – Catering quote; Tim Stott, principal planner at the Highland Council – WestPlan consultation; Dorothy Edwardson, HM Fire Service Inspectorate – Fire service inspection; Natasha Hutchison, Wester Ross Biosphere – update; ePlanning – new planning applications at 5 May 2017; Quentin Banting – Draft Lochcarron Community Council AGM minutes and ordinary minutes for May 2017; Joe Stewart – G&DCC membership; Highland Council Policy – Rail concession changes from Sunday 21 May 2017 (Bus pass no longer entitles the user to discounted tickets on trains); Mark Ruskell MSP – 20mph consultation; ePlanning – new planning applications at 12 May 2017; Carol Smith, Company Secretary LCT – Ceilidh grant application successful; Pam Gowie, Lucky2BeHere – Receipt for Defibrillators; Robbie Bain, Ward Manager – Weather warning; Chris Hamilton – Community Council meetings held in Achnasheen; Iain Ramage, Press & Journal – Phonebox removals; Jocelyn Seligman – Grudie Forest; ePlanning – new planning applications at 19 & 26 May 2017; two emails from Jake Diamont, Royal Mail – Relocation of Lochluichart Postbox; John Beaton, Inclusion Scotland – Disability Consultation (received via HC policy); two emails from Jane Holloway-Jones, ESN Acquisition Manager – proposed EE mast near Aultguish; Martin Macphee, Eneco – update; Highland Council Policy – Licensing legislation for fireworks displays; Val Cameron, Ross-Shire Voluntary Action – Develop Village Halls/Community Buildings (email passed onto Garve/Lochluichart/Achnasheen Village Hall committees); The Highland Council WestPlan – consultation extension.
Four correspondences received by post – a letter from Mary Caldwell, Forestry Commission Scotland regarding a Land Management Plan application for the Ben Wyvis & Strathpeffer woodland, a letter from Sue Tarr regarding the Development Company, Nick Harvey, Campaigns Manager at Seafarers UK and Edward Mountain MSP.
We also received 33 applications from people applying to become members of the new Development Company, 17 by email, 16 by post. All but four members have supplied an email address.
A question was raised by a member of the public about Grudie Forest. Sue Tarr on behalf of the local energy group was able to answer by saying that the group had expressed an interest in buying the Forest but had now, after discussions and further consideration, withdrawn that interest.
AOB from Community Council members – The Secretary wondered how many people use the local Railway Stations. In 2015/16, Achnasheen Railway Station was used by 3,700 passengers, Achanalt Railway Station was used by 312 passengers, Lochluichart Railway Station was used by 608 passengers and Garve Railway Station was used by 4,676 passengers according to the Office of Rail and Road statistics.
The SWI will be 100 years old this year. The Federation are planning a garden party in Contin. The Garve & Lochluichart SWI’s ten members are planning an afternoon tea in Garve Village Hall on Saturday 24 June 2017, 2.00pm-4.00pm. Everyone in the Community would be welcome to come along and help the ladies mark the centenary. Posters advertising the event are going up in the community and there is already a note on the “Local Events” page of the Community Council website. Garve Coffee & Book’s dates are also available on the same webpage.
It was agreed some time ago that the Community Council archive should be cleared out at least once a year. Correspondences from 2012 will be reviewed.
Press reports inform us that “The Loop” is a 108-mile cycle challenge that will take place on Saturday 8 July 2017. The challenge starts and finishes at Garve Hotel and follows the main road from Garve to Achnasheen, then onto Gairloch, Dundonnell and Braemore before returning to Garve via Aultguish. The cyclists will have recovery and medical back-up. More information is available on the Highland Velodrome Trust’s website - www.hivelo.co.uk
The Treasurer noted there are some potholes in the Lochluichart Church layby. There is also water gathering at the BT cover at the Gorstan Junction again. This will be passed onto Cllr Cockburn.
Caroline noted that although out with our area, the ruts inside the corner at Craigdarroch had been improved and there didn’t seem to be so much rubbish on the Bran verges recently, both of which she welcomed.
Bob Moir noted the fence at the Football pitch and the potholes in Matheson Road were still not repaired. We will ask Cllr Cockburn for an update now the elections are over!
AOB from members of the Public - A member of the public asked when is the CELTMAN! Extreme Scottish Triathlon taking place? This Saturday - http://cxtri.com Part of the Triathlon is a cycle from Shieldaig to Achnashellach via Gairloch, Braemore, Garve and Achnasheen.
Another member of the public mentioned that the West Coast Trail sign is pointing up the wrong road at Gorstan. This will be passed onto Cllr Cockburn. Traffic stopping on the slip road at the Gorstan Junction was also noted. Could double yellow lines be the answer?
A third member of the public asked if Garve Village Hall had any plans for renovations? An email will be sent seeking clarification.
Screening reports, scoping reports and consultations - Five consultations received. One from Forestry Commission Scotland advising us that they were consulting on their land management plan (2017-2027) for the Ben Wyvis & Strathpeffer woodland. Comments from Community Council members had to be received by Forestry Commission Scotland before tonight’s meeting so Community Council members were informed by email about this consultation. Community Council members had no comments.
One consultation from The Highland Council – West Highland and Islands local development plan (WestPlan). The Highland Council intends to use WestPlan to guide where development should and should not occur over the next 10 to 20 years in the West Highland and Islands. The plan is available at www.highland.gov.uk/whildp The deadline for comments is 21 July 2017. Community Council members had no comments.
One consultation received from HM Fire Service Inspectorate. HM Fire Service Inspectorate will be undertaking an inspection of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) in the Highlands. They aim to be looking at the way in which the SFRS supports and works with local communities. Deadline for comments is Saturday 30 September 2017. Community Council members had no comments on the consultation but a member of the public noted that you can have your property checked by the SFRS. More details are available at www.firescotland.gov.uk/your-safety/for-householders/home-fire-safety-visit.aspx or by calling 08000 731 999. We will request posters for our community and put a note on the website.
One consultation from Mark Ruskell MSP – 20mph consultation. Mr Ruskell was elected to represent Mid Scotland and Fife 2003−2007. He was re-elected again last year. His consultation proposes reducing the default speed limit on restricted roads from 30mph to 20mph, whilst giving local councils the power to retain specific streets as 30mph zones where suitable, e.g. as designated through routes. More details are available via www.parliament.scot/gettinginvolved/104723.aspx Closing date for comments is Monday 7 August 2017. Community Council members agreed that from an administration point of view it made sense.
A consultation from Inclusion Scotland. They are hosting a Highland project to increase the number of disabled people and their organisations taking part in local decision making. They are sending out a new online survey based on the findings from their recent workshops held throughout the area.
Building warrants, planning issues and licensing issues - There is one new building warrant currently being shown on the Highland Council website for our area. 17/01084/DOM2 is for the construction of a new dwelling house, 200 metres north of Tigh Fiodha, Silverbridge. This relates to planning application 16/04230/FUL.
One new planning application has been received by the Highland Council since our last ordinary meeting. 17/02465/FUL is for the change of use of the disused filling station in Achnasheen into a tearoom. Deadline for comments to the Case Officer by Friday 23 June 2017. The site was sold earlier this year and the previous owner passed on our Chairman’s contact details to the new owners. The new owners have asked his advice on petrol regulations and sewage arrangements on site. He gave his advice for free however, because he has advised the applicant, the Chairman declared a non-financial interest in this planning application and left the room at 10.30pm. Community Council members studied the maps and paperwork and decided they had no comments to make. The Chairman then returned to the room at 10.35pm.
At our last ordinary meeting, we noted a variation of premises licence at Garve Hotel. The applicant wished to amend the on sales hours and the off sales hours and change the premise Manager’s name on the licence. The variation application was granted by the Highland Licensing Board at its meeting on Friday 9 June 2017.
Dates of future meetings - (Ordinary meetings are usually held on the first Tuesday of the month unless stated otherwise)
Tuesday 4 July 2017, 7.00pm, Achnasheen Village Hall
Tuesday 1 August 2017, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Tuesday 5 September 2017, 7.00pm, Achnasheen Village Hall
Tuesday 3 October 2017, 7.00pm, Garve Village Hall
Members of the public are very welcome to attend Community Council meetings and take part in discussions under the guidance of the Chairman. A copy of the Constitution that every Community Council in the Highlands has to work to is available on the Highland Council website.
The Chairman thanked everyone for coming and for the flexibility in their diaries and closed the meeting at 10.45pm.
This website was last updated at 4.00pm on Friday 23 June 2017.