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THE NEXT ORDINARY MEETING OF THE

GARVE & DISTRICT COMMUNITY COUNCIL WILL

BE HELD ONLINE ON TUESDAY 2 AUGUST 2022

AT 7.00PM

 

DRAFT AGENDA

 

Members of the public are very welcome to attend Community Council meetings and take part in the discussions  under the guidance of the Chairman

 

  1. Introductions and Apologies

 

  1. Declarations of interest

 

  1. Approval of the draft minutes of the last ordinary meeting held on Tuesday 7 June 2022 and matters arising from the minutes

 

  1. Treasurer’s report

 

  1. AOB from Community Council members

 

  1. AOB from members of the public

 

  1. Screening reports, scoping reports and consultations

            

8. Building warrants, planning issues and licensing issues

 

9. Dates of future meetings

(Ordinary meetings are usually held on the first Tuesday of every month unless stated otherwise)

            Tuesday 6 September 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 4 October 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 1 November 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 6 December 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

 

 

DRAFT Minutes of the Garve & District Community Council Annual General Meeting held on Tuesday 7 June 2022 in Garve Public Hall and on webcam

Community Council members present in the Hall: Kenny Maclean (Chairman), Jennifer Haslam (Secretary) and Caroline Gamble (Treasurer). 

Community Council members present on webcam: Sadie-Michaela Harris.

Also present in the Hall: Cllr Liz Kraft and three members of the public.

Also present on webcam: Tina Hartley (Principal Community Engagement and Development Officer, TG&DDC) and four members of the public.

Apologies: Community Council members Bob Moir & Joe Stewart and co-opted member Hamish Leslie Melville.

The Chairman opened the meeting at 7.00pm and welcomed everyone to our Annual General Meeting and our first hybrid meeting of the Garve & District Community Council.  It’s been over two years since we last met in person and four years since Garve Public Hall hosted our AGM.  Hand sanitiser and spaced-out seating in the Hall was noted!  Our Chairman reminded members of the public that although our meetings are not public meetings, they were still very welcome to attend Community Council meetings and take part in the discussions under his guidance (see section 12 of the Constitution).  Those who can’t attend our meetings can, as always, write to the Secretary by post or email with any issues they wish raised.

Declarations of Interest – we note it is almost a year since the Secretary moved house.  Although she now lives out with our area, Jennifer can remain a member of the Community Council until the next election as per 6.1.2 of the scheme.  The Treasurer is a member of the Garve Litter Busters Group and declared an interest in the Scottish Water project.  Community Council members confirmed that they had read all documents to be discussed tonight before the start of the meeting.

Approval of minutes of the last Annual General Meeting held on Tuesday 1 June 2021 via webcam were proposed without amendment by Caroline Gamble and seconded by Sadie-Michaela Harris.  Approved minutes were then signed by our Chairman and Secretary.

Matters arising – none.

Chairman annual report - This along with the independently audited financial statement and proposed dates of future meetings have been sent to The Highland Council under 13.1 of constitution.  These documents were also sent out via our emailing list, by email to Community Council members and were available in Garve Post Office and on the Community Council website.  Copies were also available on request from the Secretary and hard copies were available at this meeting. 

This is my fourteenth annual Chairman’s report for the Garve & District Community Council and as ever, there has been plenty going on covering a wide range of issues since my last report twelve months ago.

Infinergy - we have been grateful for their regular attendance at our meetings and their updates.

A joint online meeting of all the Community Council’s in ward five took place on 1 November 2021 to discuss housing needs which was attended by the local MSP. 

Remembrance Sunday – a service took place at the Garve War Memorial on Sunday 14 November 2021.  It was a fresh mild dry day, our Chairman was joined by the Secretary who had travelled especially from Alness to join us, Community Council members Joe Stewart & Bob Moir, co-opted member Hamish Leslie Melville and around thirty-five members of the community.  Tea was served afterward in Garve Public Hall where the tables were well spaced out to allow for social distancing.

We were honoured to meet the Lord-Lieutenant for Ross & Cromarty on Thursday 17 March 2022 who came to meet the Community Council members and see some of our projects for herself.

Our website - www.community-council.org.uk/garveanddistrict continues to be well used since it was first launched in March 2013, receiving around 150-200 “hits” per month.  All minutes from April 1994 are available to view or download from our website along with other Community Council documents.  Our emailing list continues to grow, just email us at garveanddistrictcc@yahoo.com to be added to the list.

We have addressed or looked into a number of issues since our last Annual General Meeting such as proposed Battery Storage Facilities, EVC’s and community energy needs/projects, Seasonal Access Officer’s, recycle bins and fly tipping, various railway related issues, the Achnasheen Post Office Outreach Service, dead Deer beside the roads, food waste, blue bins, mains water issues, flood/fire prevention measures, benches, flower tubs, old Cemetery walls, cold weather payments and the future of the energy grant, future of Achnasheen Hall, community car scheme, Platinum Jubilee trees, bus timetables, UK Government onshore wind guidance update, training funds, Garve Hotel and land purchase, Personal Assistant needs, copper landline future, Defibrillators, Data Protection policy update, newsletter funds and old barbed fences.

Another topic that is a regular one not just over the last twelve months but over many years has been the road network.  The various road issues have included potholes, “The Trench”, grass cutting, white lining, signage, surface dressing works, Stromeferry Bypass and other local road closures, traffic/speed surveys, speed/roadside cameras, crash barriers and fences, overnight parking, overhanging tree branches and fallen trees, winter gritting and grit bins, Level Crossings and SORN vehicles.  With having a trunk road as well as Highland Council roads in our area, we have a lot of liaising to do with different people and organizations.  I’m sure roads will continue to be a regular topic of our discussions. 

The various issues have been discussed at ten ordinary meetings held since the last Annual General Meeting lasting around fourteen hours.  The Community Council has also considered one screening report, eight consultation documents, four building warrants and fifteen planning applications since the last Annual General Meeting. 

Coronavirus restrictions continued to affect our work with the first virtual meeting of the Community Council being held in June 2020 however, virtual meetings do save you having to travel on a cold winter’s night!

I would like to thank all the Community Council members for the continuing support they give me and may I thank them on behalf of the community for all the hard work they do as Community Council members.  It should always be remembered that Community Council members VOLUNTEER their time to represent their community.

We must thank Jennifer Haslam, who oversees the Secretarial duties.  We must also thank Caroline Gamble who, as Madam Treasurer oversees our accounts. 

A thank you must also go to (Cllr) Dr Ian Cockburn who regularly attended our meetings until he retired recently and kept in regular contact via email.  I must also thank the various local groups who keep in touch with their updates, it’s all very much appreciated and helpful.

Finally, but by no means least, a thank you must go to the people of this community for their continued support of their Community Council.

Those present had no questions on the Chairman’s report.

Treasurer’s audited report – This audited report for 2021/2022 has, as usual, been available in Garve Post Office and on the Community Council website over the last few weeks.  Copies were also available from the Secretary or at this meeting.  Those on our email list have received a copy.  The Treasurer noted expenses for 2021/2022 were similar to the previous year, little to no Hall hire costs compared to other years has helped to keep overall expenses down.  Those present had no questions on the audited accounts.  The audited accounts for 2021/2022 were then formally proposed for adoption by Caroline Gamble and seconded by Kenny Maclean, unanimously agreed.  Thanks to auditor and Treasurer.  The auditor still needs to be paid (£80.00), the Treasurer and Secretary will attend to this when they are next both in the bank, apologies to our auditor!  It was agreed we transfer £137.30 from the reserve to the treasurer’s account to clear the end of year debt. 

Our Chairman was concerned to read that there has been another case of fraud against the LCT bank account.  They have now had two or three incidents, all of which the bank’s fraud department are aware of.  The bank refunded the money immediately.  The Treasurer, like our Chairman felt this was all very concerning and notes Carol Smith (LCT Company Secretary) suggestion that we keep a close eye on our own Community Council bank account.  Community Council member Bob Moir suggested (via email) that perhaps digital banking would help in this regard.  The Treasurer and Secretary will look into this when they are next both in the bank.

Election of Office Bearers – all office bearers stand down at each AGM but can stand again if they wish.  Jennifer Haslam proposed Caroline Gamble continue as Treasurer.  Sadie-Michaela Harris seconded and all agreed.  Sadie-Michaela Harris proposed Jennifer Haslam continue as Secretary.  Caroline Gamble seconded and all agreed.  Jennifer Haslam proposed that Kenny Maclean continue as our Chairman.  Sadie-Michaela Harris seconded and all agreed.  Community Council members also unanimously agreed that our Chairman continue to deal with any press enquiries and Community Council website administrator.

Dates of future meetings – it should be noted 1.2 of standing orders (ordinary meetings are held on the first Tuesday of each month accept January and July when no meeting shall take place).

July 2022 – no meeting

Tuesday 2 August 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 6 September 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 4 October 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 1 November 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 6 December 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

January 2023 – no meeting

Tuesday 7 February 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 7 March 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 4 April 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 2 May 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 6 June 2023, AGM followed by an ordinary meeting, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

The dates of future meetings were proposed by Kenny Maclean and seconded by Jennifer Haslam, unanimously agreed.

Any other Annual General Meeting business – following a couple of instances over the years of proposed amendments being sent via email less than 24-hours before our next meeting which could easily have been missed, the Secretary wished to propose the following text be added to our list of additional standing orders … “Proposed amendments to the published draft minutes must be received in writing by the Community Council Secretary either by post or email within 14 days of the draft minutes having been published.  For the avoidance of doubt, the draft minutes will be dated when they have been published.  Proposed amendments received after 14 days will be noted but not considered”.  Everyone in the community was informed either online or offline on Sunday 22 May 2022 of this proposal to ensure everyone was aware and we asked for feedback on this proposal at this AGM or in writing if anyone in the community was unable to attend.  Dot Ferguson, Senior Ward Manager wrote to us on the evening of Sunday 22 May 2022 making sure we aren’t allowing members of the public to amend or approve our draft minutes.  Our Chairman replied … “We wouldn't let a member of the public propose an amendment to the main body of the draft minute or approve the draft minute but I don't mind a member of the public asking for an amendment if they attended that particular meeting and we've accidentally misrepresented what they said in the draft minute.  We are proposing a time limit of 14 days as some people do leave it until the last minute.  Is that ok?”  Dot confirmed that was fine and thanked our Chairman for his clarification.  Sue Tarr in attendance at this meeting felt the proposal wasn’t necessary.  Mike Franklin in attendance at this meeting wondered if 14 days to produce draft minutes plus 14 days to make any proposed amendments made much difference.  Our Chairman felt a total of 28 days was better than receiving proposed amendments less than 24-hours before our next meeting.  Our Chairman noted a verbal comment made to him last week that they were surprised such a rule wasn’t already in place and our Chairman also noted that a 14-day consultation period was standard in planning applications.  It was proposed by Jennifer Haslam and seconded by Kenny Maclean that the rule be introduced from tonight for six months and reviewed at our December 2022 ordinary meeting, unanimously agreed.

Date of the next Annual General Meeting - Tuesday 6 June 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

The Chairman thanked everyone for attending and closed the Annual General Meeting at 7.30pm.

This set of minutes were first published (in draft form) at 4.00pm on Friday 10 June 2022.

 

DRAFT Minutes of the Garve & District Community Council ordinary meeting

held on Tuesday 7 June 2022 in Garve Public Hall and on webcam

Community Council members present in the Hall: Kenny Maclean (Chairman), Jennifer Haslam (Secretary) and Caroline Gamble (Treasurer). 

Community Council members present on webcam: Sadie-Michaela Harris.

Also present in the Hall: Cllr Liz Kraft and three members of the public.

Also present on webcam: Tina Hartley (Principal Community Engagement and Development Officer, TG&DDC, present from 7.30pm until 9.05pm but did have to pop out during that time) and four members of the public.

Apologies: Community Council members Bob Moir & Joe Stewart and co-opted member Hamish Leslie Melville.

The Chairman opened this meeting at 7.30pm following the conclusion of the AGM and welcomed everyone.  He reminded members of the public that although our meetings are not public meetings, they were still very welcome to attend Community Council meetings and take part in the discussions under his guidance (see section 12 of the Constitution).  Those who can’t attend our meetings can, as always, write to the Secretary by post or email with any issues they wish raised.

We were sorry to learn that Shona Mackenzie, a former resident of Lochluichart and Garve has passed away in Nottingham.  She was a daughter of the late Alick and Margaret Mackenzie and a sister to Billy and Donald.  Our thoughts are with the family.

Best wishes to former Community Council Chairperson Helen Grainge who has been unwell recently and Willie Urquhart who has been in Hospital.  We also send our regards to Val MacIver, an old friend of the community who the Secretary bumped into in Alness recently. 

Our Chairman wished to thank everyone for their birthday wishes.

Declarations of Interest – the Treasurer is a member of the Garve Litter Busters Group and declared an interest in the Scottish Water project.  Community Council members confirmed that they had read all documents due to be discussed tonight before the start of this meeting.

Approval of draft minutes of the last ordinary meeting held on Tuesday 3 May 2022 via webcam were proposed without amendment by Sadie-Michaela Harris and seconded by Caroline Gamble, unanimously agreed.  Minutes are available at Garve Post Office, Achnasheen Village Noticeboard, on our website or via email.  Hard/electronic copies are also available on request from the Secretary.  Approved minutes were then signed by our Chairman and Secretary.  Sue Tarr in attendance at this meeting thanked the Community Council for considering her proposed amendments at our last meeting and informed us that although she is on our emailing list and had received notice of this meeting, she had not received the draft minutes for last month’s meeting.  We were not aware of any such issues but would look into the matter.  (Post meeting note – having checked our sent email folder, everyone on our emailing list including Sue were sent the draft minutes on Sunday 8 May 2022).

Matters arisingProposed Battery Storage facility - https://meetings.ili-energy.com/lochluichart-energy-storage-project/ no updates.

Infinergy – www.lxxwindfarm.co.uk/ no further updates.

Marion McDonald at Foundation Scotland has been in touch to say the EDF Corriemoillie windfarm Education and Training Fund has recently paid out the following grants in our area … £1,000.00 to purchase a laptop and contribute to travel and subsistence costs relating to a Childhood course and £70.00 to fund the purchase of course books relating to Social Services and Healthcare (Adults).  The deadline for the next round of grant applications is Monday 3 October 2022.  More details can be found at https://www.foundationscotland.org.uk/corriemoillie-education-training  This update has already appeared on our website.

Highland Council updateswww.highland.gov.uk – at the Highland Council elections held on Thursday 5 May 2022, Chris Birt, Liz Kraft and Patrick Logue were elected as Highland Councillors to ward five along with long standing member Cllr Biz Campbell.  We have made contact with the newly elected Councillors and sent them three months’ worth of our minutes to help get them up to speed!  Our Chairman understands other Community Council’s in ward five will, following his suggestion, follow suit.  Cllr Kraft confirmed some already have.  Our Chairman also had a good long chat on the telephone with Cllr Kraft on Wednesday 18 May 2022 which we are sure she found informative!

We asked The Highland Council’s Road’s Department for updates on the following … white lines in Garve Village.  The white liner is coming to ward five soon so the Garve Village road markings have been added to the list of jobs.  Collapsed drain in Garve between Garve Public Hall and Garve Post Office was repaired on Monday 23 May 2022, thanks to the local road’s team.  A Mossford resident has reported potholes on the A832 (Case-420832354).  We have asked for an update on this matter.  The potholes were filled with cold tar the next day.  Our thanks to The Highland Council’s Road’s Department and local roads teams for all their help.  Community Council member Bob Moir has reported some fly tipping in Garve at the old cemetery - Case-423251974 on Wednesday 18 May 2022 which was cleared a few days later.  Many thanks to Bob and The Highland Council rubbish team.  There are four blocked drains beside the A832 at Mossford.  Local residents have informed our Chairman that they reported this to The Highland Council in October 2021 but nothing has been done.  Our Chairman has photographed the drains and reported the matter himself.  Case-426753469 reported on Wednesday 1 June 2022.  Yesterday, The Highland Council’s Road’s Department confirmed that they had put these drains onto the works program.  They were awaiting collection of the gully sucker which has been in the workshop.  Our Chairman has kept the Mossford residents aware of developments so far which they are most grateful for and those in attendance at this meeting from Mossford wished to thank our Chairman for all his help.  Our Chairman asked Cllr Kraft to clarify if there really was only one gully sucker.  Is it one for Ross & Cromarty or one for the whole of the Highlands?  Cllr Kraft to seek clarification.

Achnasheen EVC – the latest update we received on Tuesday 17 May 2022 is that as it has been a significant period of time since the installation took place, a part of the internal infrastructure no longer meets regulations and needs updated.  We are told this is a fairly straight forward job and once complete, should allow for the meter installation and commissioning to take place.  It is hoped all works will be completed “in the next few weeks”.  Our thanks to the EVC team for the update.  Cllr Kraft is looking into this matter and whether a EVC can be located on the A835, perhaps at Aultguish.  She felt Achnasheen was a good place to have a charger but was concerned that she had received reports of other chargers also not working despite information claiming they were in place and available.

Dot Ferguson, Senior Ward Manager has confirmed that emails from retiring Councillors are not passed on but has no doubt that newly elected Councillor’s will be quickly brought up to speed with outstanding issues in the ward.  Our thanks to Dot for her update. 

Concern has been expressed to our Chairman about the incident last Wednesday lunchtime on the A832 near Gairloch.  The road was expected to be closed for around 30 minutes while rocks were blasted to make room for a road widening program however, rocks were blasted onto the existing road and into the nearby loch resulting in a much longer time needed to clear the existing road and make the area safe.  Vehicles including people from this area were stuck on the wrong side of the blockage for around four hours with no toilet facilities, water or even information coming from the contractor on site.  Cllr Kraft will make enquiries.  (Post meeting note - the blast was successfully fired at 13:45 with no issues and the all clear sounded at 13:55 but it was immediately observed that the front rock face had spilled out onto the existing road.  Immediately a clean-up was started by those on site.  The majority of the large rocks were removed from the road by 14:15 and it was passable however, site staff had significant safety concerns with the remaining loose rock on the front face which could fall onto passing traffic.  The cleaning up operation continued until 17:30 at which point the road was able to be reopened safely).

Traffic Calming Working Group – hosted by TG&DDC, a meeting was held on Thursday 19 May 2022.  Community Council member Bob Moir and The Treasurer attended the meeting in a personal capacity along with our Chairman who was invited to attend.  Over all it was a positive meeting, lots of "cheaper" solutions such as double white lines through Mossford were suggested or rumble strips at Gorstan as well as "smiley signs" and “slow down” signs for Achnasheen, Achanalt and Mossford/Lochluichart.  There was a general feeling that more traffic, more inappropriate speed/speeding, NC500 promotion of the roads and staycations have probably added to the overall problems now facing our community.  It was suggested that a dummy police man with a pretend speed gun be tied to a lamppost.  Our Chairman offered to be the dummy but nobody has taken up his offer … yet!  Next steps are that all this will be reported back to Cllr Kraft and MSP who will be invited to a meeting and possibly a community petition to show feelings in the area through the new newsletter.  More information is available at https://garve.org/traffic-calming-may22  Since that meeting, our Chairman has suggested to Cllr Kraft that a traffic survey be carried out to see how many vehicles and their speeds actually travel on our roads as any petition would need evidence to back it up.  Cllr Kraft has confirmed that having contacted both roads and streetlight departments within The Highland Council and the senior ward manager, all seemed quite favourable to the possibility of additional signs for our area and may even be able to help towards some costs, tbc.  Perhaps the ward budget could also be used, again tbc.  Cllr Kraft has, through the MSP’s office received a response from Transport Scotland that they were open to suggestions of additional sign on the A835 truck road.  The MSP has also called on additional police patrols on the NC500 as we have also done.  Cllr Kraft also noted that other funding streams such as the levelling up fund had noted impacts on small communities such as ours in their application so funding maybe available through these sources if applications by The Highland Council prove successful.  Seasonal Access Ranger reports are also a useful guide in highlighting where the problem areas are.  Cllr Kraft will send reports onto us.  It was felt by some that the proposed petition should be put on hold now there appears to be positive responses coming from The Highland Council and Transport Scotland via Cllr Kraft and our MSP.  Tina Hartley will refer this particular point back to the working group.   Also since that meeting, Glyn Robson, Lochluichart Estate Manager has passed on some details to us about what the private speed cameras at Lochluichart are recording.  Last month there has been over 50 vehicles passing above 60mph, the fastest 71mph.  We have already passed this onto the Police as intelligence, our thanks to Glyn for sharing the information directly with us.  A question was raised about speed limits for different sized vehicles.  More info at https://www.gov.uk/speed-limits  Our Chairman confirmed he would be happy to attend further meetings on this or with any other local group/organisation if invited and if the diary allows! 

At the end of this meeting tonight, our Chairman offered to take Cllr Kraft for a drive around Garve and show her the issues in person.  (Post meeting note – our Chairman took Cllr Kraft to see white line issues in Stirling Drive, Garve Phonebox, Potholes in Matheson Road and around the Garve Recycle bins, The Avenue, forestry tracks and road markings on the Gorstan Junction.  Cllr Kraft took photos and made several notes, thanked our Chairman for his time and very much appreciated seeing the issues for herself).

The Highland Council notes that residents should report issues directly to them by calling The Highland Council’s Call Centre on 01349 886606 or via www.highland.gov.uk/report  In all cases, you will be given a reference number.  The Highland Council also appreciate photos showing the actual problem. 

Faults on the Trunk Road (A835) should be reported via https://www.bearscot.com/report-a-defect/   We note white lines on the A835 around the Gorstan Junction area look faded, this has been reported.  We did suggest these be done at the same time as white lining on the A835 near Contin was getting done, but our suggestion wasn’t acted upon.  Cllr Kraft will see what can be done from a Highland Council point of view as their road (A832) meets the A835 there.  On Thursday 26 May 2022 we received an update from BEAR Scotland via the Senior Ward Manager … Surfacing improvements on the A835 north of Garve are set to get underway on Monday 30 May 2022.  The proposed improvements will see just over 1.6km of the A835 resurfaced north of Silverbridge.  The project is expected to take place over ten days between 7.00am and 7.00pm.  All works are expected to be completed by 7.00pm on Monday 13 June 2022 depending on weather conditions.  No works will take place over the weekend periods or on Friday 3 June 2022.  To ensure the safety of roadworkers and road users alike, a 10mph convoy system will be in place during working hours.  Traffic management will be removed out with working hours; however, a temporary 30mph speed limit will remain in place as road users will be travelling over a temporary surface.  Access through the works site for emergency services will be maintained at all times.  Access to local properties will also be maintained; however, there may be times where access is restricted for a short period of time.  This update has already been posted on our website.

The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee – it should be noted that any trees planted become the responsibility of and belong to the landowner.  Cllr Kraft is taking a keen interest in this matter having read our minutes covering this topic over the last few months.  Our Achnasheen tree and our Jubilee tree from 2012 are now both registered at https://queensgreencanopy.org/  Yesterday late afternoon we received an update for The Highland Council’s Forestry Officer which informed us that he is not going to be able to find time to carry out an updated tree survey in The Avenue due to other work commitments.  To keep the momentum going, he suggests that we get an Arb/Forestry consultant in.  He feels it is a good time to get a tree survey carried out while the trees are in leaf.  Any tree surgery/felling work can take place after the bird nesting season, but before the autumn.  Trees can then be planting at the back end of the year.  The 2013 SSE tree survey would be a good starting point for the consultant.  Community Council members felt the email seemed to suggest we pay for a consultant to survey Highland Council owned trees.  As The Avenue is their responsibility, (their land) surely it should be at their cost?  What about the safety of people following trees falling in the winds?  As Community Council member Sadie-Michaela Harris put it, this isn’t a cosmetic whim!  Cllr Kraft will see what can be done from the Highland Council side.

In related news, an afternoon tea took place last Sunday 5 June 2022 in Garve Public Hall to celebrate HM The Queen’s Jubilee.  The Treasurer and our Chairman attended.  Our Chairman was there for about 90 minutes and in that time, lots of people in and out, some were able to stay longer than others but overall, he thought about 60-70 people attended including people from Achnasheen, Achanalt, Lochluichart, Gorstan, Strathgarve, Little Garve, Garbat and Inchbae as well as Garve itself.  He thought it was good to see the Hall open and full of people from this community once again with hand sanitisers in place.  Our Chairman enjoyed having a good catch up with people there especially with George and Daniel, the local Posties.  Well done to the Garve Events Group for all their hard work and keeping the tea/coffee flowing!  Also, congratulations to Jess Millington who won the Jubilee hamper.

Scottish Water update - our Treasurer declared an interest in this topic and took no part in the discussion.  Installation of new water pipes for the Little Garve/Gorstan area are ongoing.  The Secretary is aware that recently laid pipes in Gorstan have had to be dug back up as there was a problem when installed.  Some people at this meeting reported a drop in pressure, sometimes down to 1.5bar but then getting up to 2.5bar.  It was suggested that any issues should be reported directly to Scottish Water straight away at https://www.scottishwater.co.uk/Help-and-Resources/Contact-Us/Contacting-Us 

A joint TG&DDC/LCT/Community Council meeting took place on Tuesday 24 May 2022.  Following advice from Foundation Scotland, OSCR, Solicitors and Eneco, it looks like there is no way the energy grant can continue however, the Community Support Grant is very flexible in what it will pay out for such as energy costs, fuel to get to work etc … so everyone in the community is encouraged to look at this non-means tested option.  The fund is administered by TG&DDC and funded by LCT.  More details of the grant can be found at https://garve.org/support-grant  Various options and suggestions were also discussed and LCT and TG&DDC will follow them up such as a lunch club and transport to local events.  Sue Tarr in attendance at this meeting thought it had been a good meeting.  The Treasurer noted a printer is available at the coffee mornings in Garve so people not online can get the support grant form printed off for them.  A question has since been asked if these joint meeting should be open to the public.  Our Chairman felt that when it comes to our turn to host in January 2023, they will be open as all Community Council meetings must be accessible by the public.

In slightly related news a new shop bus service has started - https://garve.org/shopmobility-start-date funded by LCT, you need to book in advance.  The service is open to everyone in our community but may need to be a more targeted priority service in the future depending on demand.

SKS Scotland (www.sksscotland.co.uk) have been appointed by TG&DDC to consult with the community about what the community would like to see happen with the now community owned land (between Garve Hotel and Garve Public Hall including the old staff accommodation block).  The deadline for responses is Sunday 19 June 2022.  This update has already been sent out via our emailing list and has already been posted on our website.  Hard copies of the survey were also recently sent via post to every house in our area.  We would encourage everyone in the community to fill in the form.  One form can be used by everyone in the household or additional copies can be supplied, see https://garve.org/community-survey-may22 for more details.

TG&DDC have requested that an application in the name of the Community Council be made to the Investing in Communities Fund.  TG&DDC are not set up in such a way to meet the funds criteria as they are not OSCR registered.  The application is to pay for a project lead to support the project with associated costs and some minor capital allowance for the community land in Garve over the next three years.  TG&DDC are very happy to take on all paperwork, financial management and monitoring of the fund’s outcomes if the application were successful.  On closer inspection of the criteria, our Chairman didn’t think we meet the rules either as we don’t have an office that is “rooted in the community they serve” as our office moved with our Secretary to Alness about a year ago.  He was also concerned that any liability would fall onto him and his fellow Office Bearers because of the way we are set up.  There was also concern around how we might not be able to look at a planning application objectively for the land if we are in partnership with the land owner.  Andrew Biddlecombe (with his Development Company hat on) felt it should be ok regarding liabilities and this funding would be good for the community.  The Secretary wasn’t so sure there wouldn’t be any liabilities.  The Treasurer wondered if the application deadline could be extended?  That would be up to the funding body to decide.  Our Chairman wondered if another local group could work with the Development Company on this matter?  He also wondered if it was possible to draw up a partnership agreement or memorandum of understanding as suggested in the criteria guidance in time?  Sue Tarr (with her Development Company hat on) said that Tina Hartley was very good at meeting tight deadlines and explained that they are not OSCR registered as it was felt that the additional layer of paperwork and requirements was not necessary for the work they were doing.  It perhaps might be something that the Board need to reconsider in the future depending what other projects they might take on.  After some further discussion, it was proposed by our Chairman and seconded by our Secretary that we decline TG&DDC request on this matter, unanimously agreed.  Both Tina Hartley and Sue Tarr thanked us for giving the matter consideration.

It has been suggested by our Chairman that as we haven't had a Joint Community Council meeting of all ward five Community Council’s since November 2021 and with new Councillors now in place and the subject of roads appearing in most Community Council minutes, he wonders if the time has come for a get together?  We await replies from the other Community Council’s …

Garve & District Community Council currently has one vacancy on the Community Council.  The Community Council members consider it to be very important to have as broad a representation of our community as possible, as we cover a wide variety of community issues and to do this well, we would like members from all corners of our large area.  We usually meet on the first Tuesday of the month.  If you are aged 16 or over, live in the Community Council area and are on the electoral roll and would like to be considered for co-option onto the Community Council, please email garveanddistrictcc@yahoo.com with your name and contact details.  We note both the LCT and TG&DDC have vacancies on their boards.  Please contact them directly for more information.  This update has already appeared on our website.

Police report - no formal report received and we are still asking who our new Liaison Officer is.  Cllr Kraft will also try and find out.  As reported at previous Community Council meetings, anyone who wishes to raise an issue with the Police is asked to call them directly on 101 at the time of the incident and make a witness statement.  Video, Dashcam or photo evidence is welcomed, indeed encouraged by the Police. 

We note the NC500 website now has a road safety page - https://www.northcoast500.com/top-tips-hitting-route/road-safety/ but the local MSP would like to hear directly from constituents about their experiences of the NC500 - Maree.Todd.msp@parliament.scot  (Please note you must give your full name and address when writing to a MSP or MP as they can only act for people who live in their constituency).

Press reports inform us that a so called “Flying Dutchman” who drove at over 100mph as he toured the area was recently caught.  The 56-year-old building contractor didn't respect the 60mph speed limit on the A832 at Achanalt on Monday 9 May 2022.  Police were carrying out speed checks on the straight stretch of road and clocked his performance Mercedes SLS at over one and a half times the limit. 

The individual appeared at Inverness Sheriff Court and admitted careless driving.  Fiscal depute David Barclay told Sheriff Sara Matheson that his office had "fast-tracked" the court appearance because the individual was due to return home imminently.  The “Flying Dutchman” was fined £640, which he paid immediately and had his licence endorsed with six penalty points.

Road Policing Officers are appealing for witnesses after a fatal road crash on the A835 at its junction with the A832 near Garve on Sunday 15 May 2022.  At around 8.35am, a red Honda Motorcycle and a white Volvo XC70 collided.  The motorcyclist, a 52-year-old man, was taken to Raigmore Hospital, Inverness with serious injuries, where he later died.  The driver and passenger of the Volvo were uninjured.  Police are appealing to anyone with further information or Dashcam footage to contact them by calling the Police on 101 quoting incident number 1135 of 15 May.  This update has already been shared on social media and has been posted on our own website.

Yesterday, around lunchtime there was an accident between Lochluichart Lodge and Mossford.  It appears a car was travelling on the wrong side of the road.  Co-opted member Hamish Leslie Melville thought both vehicles involved were hire cars.  One looked written off.  Police and others were still there nearly five hours later.  Our thanks to Hamish and Glyn Robson (Lochluichart Estate Manager) for their updates.  Some people attending this meeting weren’t surprised there had been an accident, the speed vehicles are travelling through the area is concerning.

Treasurer’s report - The Treasurer updated the meeting that the recent bank statement shows a balance of £1,289.05 as the newsletter fund of £744.50 has now been passed on to TG&DDC.  Treasurer’s fund is £-249.40 following expense of £40.10 diesel for our Chairman and £72.00 for our Chairman following Land Register enquiries for us.  Reserve is £1,538.45.  Ann Macrae, auditor still to be paid £80.00 and £29.95 ink for our Chairman.  The Treasurer suggested a fundraiser in the winter might be a good idea.  Community Council members will give the matter some thought.  A suggestion of a quiz night was made.  There were no questions for the Treasurer.

AOB from Community Council members – The Treasurer noted the temporary reduced train timetable here and across Scotland because of driver shortages - https://www.scotrail.co.uk/timetable-update  It was noted that there is no time to visit friends or have lunch up west.  Jean Bailey, a member of the Garve Station Adopters noted a passenger waiting a few hours at Garve Railway Station recently with nowhere to go for food or even a toilet.

Community Council member Sadie-Michaela Harris noted the power had gone off recently so she went to use the Phonebox in Garve.  She tried to make three phone calls but couldn’t get connected.  Enquiries will be made.  (Post meeting note - our Chairman and Cllr Kraft checked the Phonebox after this meeting and found it to be in working order).

Our Chairman was contacted by a Silverbridge resident who is finding some in car Sat Nav’s (not google) are taking his guests via Strathgarve to get to his home.  He has informed the car companies concerned and has sought permission to put signs up at Strathgarve Primary School to help people find the correct way to his property.  Our Chairman thanked him for sharing the information with us.  It was noted that the app “What3Words” is also very useful in finding places and that people don’t always read emails properly when following instructions.

The Secretary wondered if monkey pox had been an issue up here, especially in Raigmore.  Cllr Kraft and Community Council members couldn’t remember seeing anything on the NHS Highland updates but Cllr Kraft would make enquiries.

AOB from members of the public – two Mossford residents informed the meeting that people are using the layby’s at Mossford as toilets.  Cllr Kraft confirmed that this has (in more general terms) already been raised at Highland Council meetings.  Perhaps signs explaining where the nearest toilets are would be helpful as this is a health and safety issue.  The Garve Litter Busters group know first-hand what our layby’s can be like.  Cllr Kraft askes that these incidents are reported to her so she can pass onto the Seasonal Access Rangers.

Screening reports, scoping reports and consultations – we have received two consultations.  We along with all ward five Community Councils have received notice of a consultation from Torridon & Kinlochewe Community Council asking for any feedback on their community survey results.  Community Council members noted the detailed report but had no comments.

The review of the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service Draft Strategic Plan 2022-25 has now been published.  This is part of the continued development of the service to ensure they remain fully committed to improving the safety and wellbeing of the communities they serve both now and in the future.  The closing date for comments is Sunday 10 July 2022.  Community Council members had no comments.

All Highland Council consultations are available at http://consult.highland.gov.uk/portal  All Scottish Government consultations are available at https://consult.gov.scot/consultation_finder 

Tina Hartley left the webcam link at around 9.05pm.

Building warrants, planning issues and licensing issues - one previous planning application has been determined by The Highland Council since our last ordinary meeting.  In April 2022 we considered 22/01297/TPNO, the proposed installation of 30metre lattice mast, fenced compound, cabinet and associated works adjacent to the Fannich Tunnel.  The Highland Council case officer has determined that prior approval is not required for this communications tower.  The applicant now has five years to start construction before this permission elapses.

Two new planning applications have been received by The Highland Council since our last ordinary meeting.  22/02256/FUL is the proposed erection of an extension to North Hill Forest Cottage, Silverbridge.  The deadline for comments to the Case Officer is Friday 10 June 2022.  Community Council members raised no objections.

22/02005/FUL is the proposed extension of tower to 25m height, installation of 3 antennas, 2 dishes and ancillary works at Bidein Clann Raonaild Radio Station, above Glen Docharty.  Although this mast is located just within the Torridon & Kinlochewe Community Council area, it can be seen from our area on a clear day.  Community Council members noted the application and had no comments.

All planning applications can be viewed at www.highland.gov.uk/info/180/planning_-_applications_warrants_and_certificates/143/planning_permission/4 

There are no new licensing issues for us to consider this evening.

Before our Chairman moved to the last item, he had to note Community Council member Joe Stewart has been unable to attend Community Council meetings since April 2021 due to work commitments which take him away from us and his family.  Under 11.2 of the scheme, our Chairman had to ask Community Council members for agreement for Joe’s continued absence.  Community Council members, proposed by the Treasurer, seconded by the Secretary unanimously agreed Joe’s absence and noted his input via text and email is very much welcomed therefore, no further action need be taken at this time.

Dates of future meetings - the latest guidance received from The Highland Council on Thursday 3 February 2022 is that we can now meet in person if we wish to.

(Ordinary meetings are usually held on the first Tuesday of every month unless stated otherwise)

July 2022 – no meeting

Tuesday 2 August 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 6 September 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 4 October 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 1 November 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

Tuesday 6 December 2022, 7.00pm, webcam

January 2023 – no meeting

Tuesday 7 February 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 7 March 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 4 April 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 2 May 2023, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

Tuesday 6 June 2023, AGM followed by an ordinary meeting, 7.00pm, venue/webcam tbc

As usual, our Chairman started to draw the meeting to a close by asking all present if anyone had any final questions or thoughts on anything they had heard the evening, a question he often askes throughout the meeting too.  Nobody had any final questions or thoughts.  Although our meetings are not public meetings, members of the public are still very welcome to attend Community Council meetings and take part in the discussions under the guidance of the Chairman (see section 12 of the Constitution).  A copy of our Constitution is available in the library section of our own website and hard/electronic copies are available from the Secretary. 

Cllr Kraft was grateful for all the paperwork we had sent her before tonight’s meeting, it really helped her to get up to speed on the various issues.  She noted that some people put their concerns or start discussions on social media.  This isn’t always seen by the Councillors so would encourage anyone with any issues to email her directly.

The Chairman thanked everyone for attending.  He also thanked Community Council member Sadie-Michaela Harris for hosting the webcam session and wished the Secretary a Happy Birthday for later in the week and thanked her for travelling specially to Garve to join us in person.  The Chairman closed the meeting at 9.15pm.

This set of minutes were first published (in draft form) at 4.00pm on Friday 10 June 2022.

 

 

Since our last meeting ...

Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) have launched a consultation on its Draft Communities Strategy for Scotland’s National Forests and land.  Forestry and Land Scotland is the Scottish Government agency responsible for managing the public forests and lands owned by Scottish Ministers on behalf of the people of Scotland.  The Strategy sets out the principles and strategic priorities for how they work with communities. The Communities Strategy will sit alongside their Visitor Services Strategy and will focus on how communities can get more involved in the decisions, management and use of the national forests and Land.  The Consultation is open until Saturday 23 August 2022, more details at https://forestryandland.gov.scot/what-we-do/communities

Murdo Maclennan at Forestry & Land Scotland has been in touch to tell us that instances of unauthorised vehicles (mainly motorbikes and quads) on Forestry managed ground are increasing again including recent motorbike activity on our waymarked trail at Little Garve.  He has stopped the motorbikes a few times and asked that they do not go on the waymarked trails but they have continued to do so.  Murdo askes that we help him to remind local residents to report off road vehicles such as motorbikes to the police if they see them as it’s a risk to the responsible walkers, especially when on waymarked trails.  It is an offence under the Road Traffic Act 1988 for motorised vehicles to be driven on off road land without the land owners permission.  This includes forest roads.  Our thanks to Murdo for bringing this matter to our attention.

Some upcoming road works ... Thursday 23 June 2022 - resurfacing works are due to take place from 7.00am until 7.00pm between Silverbridge and Inchbae.  Convoy system will be in operation.  Although outside our area, the A835 will be CLOSED overnight for five nights from 8.00pm on Sunday 26 June 2022 for resurfacing works between Rogie Falls and Tarvie.  The road will reopen at 6.00am each morning and there will be amnesties throughout the night if anyone gets caught out at 9.00pm, 10.00pm, 11.00pm, midnight, 2.00am and 4.00am.  A mobile matrix sign is now at Tarvie advertising this closure.  Friday 1 July 2022 - inspection of the Garve level crossing from 8.00am until 4.00pm.  Traffic lights in place, expect delays.

Trees in The Avenue – Cllr Kraft and Nick Richards, The Highland Council’s Forestry Officer have both confirmed that it will be for The Highland Council’s Road’s Department to fund any work needing doing including tree surveys as The Highland Council owns the land, our thanks to them.  On Tuesday 14 June 2022 we received reports (thanks to Community Council member Sadie-Michaela Harris) that one of the leaning trees in The Avenue was leaning a lot more following high winds the previous day and was now leaning onto a neighbouring tree over the road.  There is also a long split in the tree trunk that you can get your hand into.  We reported this urgent matter directly to The Highland Council (Case - FS429594788) that day.  Nick Richards confirmed that he had been discussing The Avenue with his road’s colleagues and understand that they are going to appoint an Arb consultant to carry out a full survey of all the trees and recommend any work which may be required.  He noted that while it would be more convenient to wait until this survey is complete and to carry out any work after as one operation, he has seen the leaning tree and would recommend that it is felled as a matter of urgency.  An on-site meeting between roads people and the consultant took place on Monday 20 June 2022 which we were not invited to as they wanted the survey to be conducted autonomously however, we are told the meeting went well and they are now going to conduct a survey on all the trees in The Avenue and draw up a planting plan.  The leaning tree in question will be felled.  Our thanks to everyone for their continued help on this matter. 

Garve & District Community Council currently has one vacancy on the Community Council.  The Community Council members consider it to be very important to have as broad a representation of our community as possible, as we cover a wide variety of community issues and to do this well, we would like members from all corners of our large area.  We usually meet on the first Tuesday of the month.  If you are aged 16 or over, live in the Community Council area and are on the electoral roll and would like to be considered for co-option onto the Community Council, please email garveanddistrictcc@yahoo.com with your name and contact details.  We note both the LCT and TG&DDC have vacancies on their boards.  Please contact them directly for more information.

 

As ever, any questions or comments on anything we are doing, please contact us directly at garveanddistrictcc@yahoo.com

 

 

This website was last updated at 10.00am on Thursday 23 June 2022.

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