The Village of Beauly contains a number of independent and local traders to include a first class Butcher, bakery, greengrocer, delicatessen, florists, hardware store and two Co-ops. There is a local petrol station, laundry and store at the entrance to the village from the south with a haberdashers between there and the Lovat Bridge. We are blessed with two independent hotels serving lunches, teas and evening meals, two daytime restaurants/coffee shops and an Indian restaurant. There is a Chinese Takeaway and a Fish and Chip Shop. Regrettably our Post Office and two Banks closed in the last couple of years but the Post Office now has a counter in the petrol station and RBS and BoS both have travelling banks that visit the Village on a regular basis. There is also the well renowned Campbells of Beauly tweed shop, a couple of excellent gift shops, an optician, beauty parlour, hairdressers, a jewellers, a chemist and a couple of antique/art gallery shops in the village. Aird Motors provides garage repair services in the centre of the village. We now have two charity shops, or as they like to be called nowadays Charity Boutiques. Ffordes Photographic is just outside the village in Wester Balblair for all your photographic needs. A local Fish Van calls in the square weekly with a good range of seafood but Beauly on the Square will arrange fish orders if you need something special. Our hardware store, Morrison’s, deserves mention as it provides everything from a nail to a complete outfit for the country squire. Well worth a rummage where you will probably find things you thought were no longer available. Robertson’s Farm shop and petting farm are just outside the village to the North. Kilmorack Gallery on the Cannich Road (A831) has a high reputation as one of the best galleries in Scotland.
Finally we would suggest that the USP (Unique Selling Point) of the village of Beauly are the friendly, helpful and knowledgeable owners and shop staff. The other USP is free parking in the Square and at Braeview Park.
For those requirements that Beauly cannot meet we have the market town of Dingwall about eleven miles to the north which has a high street of mostly independent shops and a Tesco superstore and a Lidl. The main Banks, RBS, BoS, TSB and Clydesdale, do have branches there which are still open. There is also a full Post Office at the end of the High Street which is, perversely, at the back of the paper shop. Plenty of butchers, bakers although candlestick makers may be in short supply. An interesting and eclectic range of shops that are, at first glance, actually slightly misleading as most are very deep and have a wide range of goods you would little expect. Dingwall High Street benefits from plentiful and close free parking. They even have an electric car charging point.
Otherwise the bright lights of Inverness about fourteen miles to the south may attract but regrettably the stores are mostly national chains with a few notable exceptions. The Victorian Market is worth a visit as is Fraser’s the Butchers. Inverness, Capital of the Highlands, is deemed a city but has more of a feel of a large market town. It still has a local feel to it although the proliferation of out of town shopping centres, which earn’t it the title Tesco Town, has adversely effected the Town/City centre. Eastgates is the in-town shopping mall which contains virtually the same shops as every other shopping mall in the country but does include a large Marks and Spencers, Debenhams and Boots amongst others. The Longman, the original site of the Inverness Aerodrome before Dalcross was developed, is the car mecca for the Highlands but also contains hidden gems such as Highland Industrial Supplies which is a must visit for any ardent DIYer. Everything from the most obscure handle to welding kit to a fisherman’s cornucopia of must haves. Prices are very competitive and the range frankly outstanding. Also the big secret is the cafe which supplies one of the best and cheapest breakfasts in Inverness and well cooked and tasty lunches. Easy free parking too. Many other suppliers encompassing plumbing, agricultural supplies, building supplies, pets to tool hire are all to be found on the Longman. Inverness Theatre is a great attraction, with coffee shop and restaurant, as are the Castle and the River. The Castle now has a viewing gallery on the top of the tower. Tickets from the Museum. The Castle is to be redeveloped in the next few years as a tourist attraction but is presently the local Courts. Like most large towns dig a little bit and you will find most things you need but in Inverness you may well be surprised at the range. This is the shopping centre of the Highlands and Islands and the material needs from crofters to Lords are well catered for in the Capital of the Highlands.