Minutes of Meeting held on Thursday 6th October 2016 at the ‘The Kilmorack Hall’ at 7.45pm
Present: Steve Byford (Chair), John Stewart (Vice-Chair), Mary Graham(Secretary), John Graham, Duncan Fraser(Treasurer), Cllr. Jean Davis
Present: PC Maclean
Apologies: Cllr Davidson.
Meeting commenced: 7.50pm
Minutes of the previous meeting Thurs 1st September 2016 were taken as read and accepted as a true and accurate record. Proposed by Steven Byford,, seconded by John Graham – Approved.
Police Scotland, Beauly Area Report:
- There were no incidents in the Kilmorack area. Warning that as the nights get dark care should be taken on the roads. Keep a look out for suspicious events ie around vehicles and out buildings. JG reported a possible poaching incident near Aigas Field Centre.
- CLG meeting at Lovat Arms. Problems with noise continue with no obvious solution in sight. Earth links had been renewed which they hoped would be a solution but problem as bad as before. Again SSE stated this had to be solved. The project manager, David Hearn, for the Western Isles HVDC line was introduced and brought us up to date with progress. Confirmed that funding had not yet been approved. They stated that if the noise issue cannot be solved the HVDC cannot progress. Final item on the agenda was the landscaping for Wester Balblair. The issue was raised about whether this would be given to a local landscape contractor. The response was that they would have to tender for it alongside all others. (SB requested that full independent noise monitoring be done before any HVDC convertor station is built.)
- Noise update: SB and JS reported that noise is nearly as bad as before now SVC running at 100%. JS had had a meeting with Dave Allan, acting Head of Engineering, and others from SSE and GE at his house on the 27th A windy day but the noise was still audible. The engineers confirmed it was very loud by the SVC. GE has promised to pull out all the stops to resolve the noise issues as their reputation was on the line. However they admitted that it may take time.
- Toll Path Steps: Request received for step edges to be marked for the visually impaired. JG had contacted John Taylor. Regrettably THC did not provide this for steps in Inverness and no funds are available. The question was raised that perhaps SSE could provide this prior to handover. Path maintenance was also raised and John Taylor is going to speak with the contractors.
- Kilmorack Hall Bus drop off. JG has spoken to the Church of Scotland who say they have a verbal agreement but need to get this in writing. They are chasing to resolve this.
- Participatory Budget – Cllr Jean Davis advised what was required of the Community Councils.
- Red Squirrel Signage and Ropeway Crossing: Red squirrels are crossing the Cannich road in search of hazelnuts between Aigas Dam and Crask of Aigas. Concerns have been expressed by local residents. Aigas Field Centre has offered to take this in hand. KCC voted £150 donation towards the costs. Proposed JG, seconded SB – all agreed
- SB to reply to Cllr. Davidson regarding her offer to try and arrange a meeting with the CEO of SSE. SB questioned whether the HVDC building could be sited further away with just the AC line, undergrounded, coming into Wester Balblair.
Vice Chairman’s Report:
- Toll Path Seats Update – John Murray had started clearing the site. Transport of concrete to be addressed.
- Cemetery Walls: JS has spoken to Jeff Fridge(THC) – ongoing
- War Memorial: Jeff Fridge had asked if any further work was needed at the memorial. The slippery surface of the slab stones was mentioned and JS will see if they could pressure wash them.
- Wester Balblair landscaping: Advice had been received that the planting was suitable for the area but continued regular maintenance will be needed.
Secretary’s Business and Correspondence:
- Rural Inverness Communities Conference 8th November
- 2017 meeting dates: The Hall was not available for Thursdays but we could have Fridays. This was not deemed suitable. However the Hall is planning an extension in the near future which will include a meeting room. In the interim SB offered the Kirk (ffordes Photographic) for our Thursday meetings. This was accepted with gratitude.
- Payment to Men’s Shed for the final wreath holder which DF had installed. Balance £3407.01
Planning Matters: No reports
- Notification of removal of payphones at both Wester Balbalir and the Crask of Aigas . Whilst it had been known for some time that they were available to adopt, no enthusiasm had been shown from the Crask. There is presently the opportunity to make views known to THC.
Next meeting: Thursday 3rd November 2016 at 7.45pm
Meeting Closed: 9.38pm