Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Campaign against Ardersier Waste Water treatment plant steps up a gear with petition and social media action

The citizens of Ardersier are getting into action. An online petition reads:

"The Ardersier & Petty area is fast becoming the place for tourists to visit in Highland. It is a beautiful village with lots of small businesses and a fantastic environment next to the Moray Firth. It has beautiful walks, places for many activities including increasing amount of people using the Moray Firth for water sports. We have a large amount of wildlife here that return year after year to breed and who are safe here. For example: foxes, badgers, increasingly differing species of birds, dolphins, insects, marine plants and life etc which are not found in many other areas."

The page goes on to cite lack of consultation, loss of habit, pollution and other factors concerning the proposed sewage works. It is only natural that the campaigners seek the support of friends and colleagues etc in Nairn. But if we have a look at the Sandown Development Brief  which became  supplementary planning guidance in 2013 (you can download a copy here) you will find a very illuminating paragraph under the Access and Servicing section:

"7.4. All foul water will require connection to the public sewer. Nairn’s existing sewerage network has limited capacity both in terms of its network and the receiving sewage works at the east beach. Later phases are likely to require new sewer connection to the new sewage works north of Ardersier. The central green spine should act as the principal surface water drainage area within the site because its levels allow for gravity-based drainage and this could assist in wetland creation / retention. Adequate long term maintenance of the area as a surface water drainage device will be required."

So once development gets well underway at Sandown it looks like a lot of the sewage will have to be sent to Ardersier - presumably the Delnies output too, if it went ahead, would have to have sewage pumped over to Ardersier as well. It's not only Nairn's future waste, we asked the campaigners via twitter if development in the airport area was the reasoning behind the proposal and they confirmed it was. 

The Ardersier campaign Facebook page is here and the petition is here.

Gurn Comment: Sending Nairn sewage west to Ardersier would solve some of our problems but it is unfair on the receiving community. Is a better solution possible for Nairn and Ardersier?

Nairn County Fans meeting called for Weds 1st of June in the Legion at 7 p.m.

Ian Finlayson stated on the fans "County til I die" fundraising page this evening:

"As promised Im calling a Fans meeting to be held in the British Legion a week tonight, Wednesday 1st June, at 7pm. Myself and Donald Matheson will be there to bring you all up to date on the current situation, answer as many questions as we can and help assist with any fundraising ideas. I can't emphasise enough that everyone is welcome. "

It's the big one folks, get yourself along to this very important meeting if you can. More on the County fans fundraising page here. 

Don't forget on the Tuesday night 31st May there is a shareholders meeting to be held in the Newton Hotel also at 7 pm. More details here on the Nairn County Facebook page. 

Multi-million pound offer in for former McDermott's yard

The P&J state this morning:

"A multimillion pound deal is on the brink of being struck to breathe new life into a huge Highland fabrication yard.

Talks over the sale of the former McDermott Yard at Ardersier – which once employed thousands of workers – are at an advanced stage."  More here. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

First water quality test of the year by SEPA and both Nairn beaches looking very, very good

SEPA have published the results on their website. Here's the East beach ones.

DateEscherichia coli
Intestinal enterococci
18 May 20163010

And here's the Central beach
DateEscherichia coli
Intestinal enterococci
18 May 20163020

Thanks to Greg for pointing this out to these results out in a comment thread on another article.

Greg added: "which is well under the limit for an "excellent" classification (250   and 100cfu/100ml respectively)." That is correct Greg but the problem is we have to be within those limits 95% of the season's tests to achieve that.

Anyway looks perfect at the moment for a dip. No doubt the SEPA pages might get quite a few visits from Nairn residents this year. 

Sepa pages with more info Nairn East here and Nairn Central here

BMX Track makeover looking good

Les Fridge leaves Nairn County FC

Monday, May 23, 2016

Fancy reading a 241 page document - A Nairn South "Transport Appraisal" - a wee bit of consultation that might just crack you up completely

The consultation paper that suggests how traffic changes could be made to the road network to enable the Nairn South development to go ahead is now online and Highland Council are seeking your comments. 

This observer followed the link that a local councillor had posted on Facebook and went to look at the document. 

It's a 241 page document and a PDF you have to download - it is a bit user unfriendly too in that you have to adjust the size regularly to flit from text to looking at maps- how are members of the public supposed to find the time to look at this let alone attempt to decipher it? Parts of it need someone to translate it into language that people use in real life. Even people that normally attempt to pay attention to this kind of thing will be p***** off with this. It's all a bit too much folks. 

How about a room with maps and interpretors like they had for the A96 Nairn bypass? Give us a chance please!  After all the document that Nairn's four councillors discussed before it went to this stage was only 25 pages long!

Anyone with the nerve to go and get themselves a copy of the document can do so here. 

Council seeks talks on improving water standards at Nairn Beach - "Nairn remains very much open for business"

The Highland Council has called a meeting with SEPA, Scottish Water and other partners to seek clarification on water quality notices issued by SEPA for Nairn Central and East Beaches.

Leader of the Council, Margaret Davidson said: “We are seeking clarification on SEPA’s advice and will be looking for urgent action to address any issues which could potentially have an impact on the economy of the Nairn area. We will be looking for an immediate short term plan of action to achieve a sufficient or higher standard of quality as soon as possible and to maintain higher standards throughout this year’s bathing season. It will then be necessary to look at a longer term plan of improvements to ensure that the water quality is improved for future years to come.”

Chair of the Area Committee, Cllr Michael Green added: “I want to give some reassurance to the local community that the Council is taking this matter very seriously. Our stunning beaches are a precious asset to the economy of Nairn and the surrounding area. If swift action is taken, we can turn this around very quickly so that our beaches and the waters are of an improved standard for the coming season. 

“The good thing is that the SEPA signs will give real time information on the water quality on a day to day basis. I also want to ensure that regular monitoring reports are made available so that residents can see that any remedial action has been effective and that substantial improvements are being made.

“Meanwhile Nairn remains very much open for business. Nairn is set in the heart of the Highlands on the shores of the beautiful Moray Firth, with easy access to air and rail routes, wonderful walking routes, outdoor activities and wild life and some of the best scenery in the world.”

Saturday, May 21, 2016

County Crisis - fans rally round on social media

The fans fundraising machine that raised a massive 70K for the construction of the New Cowshed at Station Park looks as though it may be swinging back into action as a funding crisis looms with the coming departure of the main sponsors Narden at the end of this month. 

Former player Ali Nichol has started a think-tank fundraising page on Facebook were fans are floating suggestions. If you have any ideas please head over to the Nairn County TID Fundraising Page. Maybe you might be lucky enough to have quite a bit of spare cash? If so a new sponsor is needed and the club would no doubt be glad to hear from you. 

An EGM of the shareholders has been called and will take place on Tuesday May 31st (7.00 pm) at the Newton Hotel. The Gurn would humbly suggest that some way be found of making that meeting open to the general public there is no time to lose and the more information that is put in the public domain before that meeting the better. 

Nairn Coastguard in action today

Wee storm rocks Nairn

Just after one o'clock this afternoon quite an extreme weather event passed through Nairn. Fortunately it only lasted about 10 minutes but it caused difficulties for anyone outside and was extremely hazardous for motorists too. Images below of what it looked like on the met office weather map and a view from the East Beach as the storm moved towards Nairn.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Wildnight Comedy change of MC for tonight Sat 21st

The Gurn understands that due to Billy Kirkwood being stuck in the U.S,  Wildnight Comedy have the brilliant Jo Jo Sutherland standing in as MC. There will be tickets available on the door for people who have not bought already.  More information here. 

County Crisis - "The severity of the situation the Club now finds itself in cannot be overstated"

EGM for County shareholders coming up on Tuesday May 31st

Bathing Water Quality - "Very worthwhile meeting with Maree Todd MSP" says Visit Nairn's Iain Fairweather

Iain posted the following on one of the town's social media pages earlier today:

"Very worthwhile meeting with Maree Todd MSP. VisitNairn, Assoc of Nairn Businesses, Nairn Residents group made a clear case for dealing with poor water quality. Complete agreement that problem must be solved now. Meetings with SEPA, Highland Council and Scottish Water planned soon."

Highland Council leader calls for swift action on Nairn beaches water quality issues

Representatives from local businesses, community council and tourism organisations in Nairn, are set to meet with The Highland Council, Scottish Water and The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) to discuss a long-term action plan to improve the quality of water at two Nairn beaches.

The problem came to light after SEPA issued water quality notices for Nairn Central and East beaches.

The Leader of the Highland Council, Margaret Davidson, Loreine Thompson of the Nairn Residents Concern Group and The Leader of the Nairnshire Area Committee, Councillor (Cllr) Michael Green attended a meeting held on Thursday at The Highland Council to discuss the issue.
Michael Green and Loreine Thomson

Speaking after the meeting, Highland Council Leader, Margaret Davidson highlighted the need for swift action to eradicate the problem: “We are seeking clarification on SEPA’s advice and will be looking for urgent action to address any issues which could potentially have an impact on the economy of the Nairn area. We will be looking for an immediate short term plan of action to achieve a sufficient or higher standard of quality as soon as possible and to maintain higher standards throughout this year’s bathing season. It will then be necessary to look at a longer term plan of improvements to ensure that the water quality is improved for future years to come.”

At the meeting it was agreed that short term remedial action was essential and that a longer term multi-agency plan was also required. The Highland Council, Scottish Water, SEPA, The Association of Nairn Businesses, Visit Nairn, and a Nairn Community representative from the River Community Council will now work together to developed a long-term strategy to resolve the issue.

Chair of the Area Committee, Cllr Michael Green was keen to emphasise the important role the community would play and underlined the need for transparency in tackling the problem: "This is the most serious challenge Nairn has faced since I was elected in 2012 and needs to be addressed with the utmost vigour and urgency. In my role as leader of the Nairnshire Committee, I will be working as a catalyst to bring together The Highland Council, Scottish Water, SEPA and Visit Scotland with Nairn Community representatives, namely: River Council, Association of Nairn Businesses, Visit Nairn and the Nairn Resident’s Concern Group. While the first priority is to agree and initiate immediate remedial works, we can only engineer a long term solution by creating an effective and transparent working partnership, that has the confidence of the people of Nairn."

A meeting of all the parties concerned is due to take place next week

A bit of work needed down at the harbour?

Local photographer Murray MacRae has sent us some pictures of one or two spots down the Harbour that look as though they badly need some work done to stop further deterioration.


Individual images here.

Nairnawaits awaiting your feedback

The Nairn Economic Initiative would like your feedback on the recent revamp of the Nairn website. If you have any thoughts or suggestions for them please contact

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Le Weekend - un petit morceau de confusion! C'est Vedredei 27

Seamus tells the Gurn:

"Confusion reigns over Cinema Nairn’s next film! Well, here it is – and it is on at
the Community & Arts Centre on Friday 27th May at 7:30pm.

 Please do not go to the Community Centre on Friday 20th expecting to see the film! The comedy drama Le Weekend, stars Lindsay Duncan and Jim Broadbent revisiting their honeymoon destination in an attempt to rejuvenate their marriage.

 Hard hitting, great fun, and Paris! See you there."

Councillor believes gas works on High Street caused local recession

Michael Green told the Gurn this week that he thought that the work on the High Street to replace the gas main took so long and created so much disruption that he believes it caused a local recession in the town's shopping area. 

Michael went on to say that it is the six months after a recession that are the most difficult and High Street businesses need help. He said that the Scottish Gas compensation scheme was unbelievably user unfriendly, complicated and onerous for traders. He said: "businesses have struggled and will continue to struggle and we need to step up and help."

Michael wants any business that suffered due to the works to contact him or Michael Boylan of the Nairn Business Association. 

Did work on the High Street gas main cause a recession for town centre businesses?

Take care if eating outdoors in bus station area - seagulls now stealing sandwiches

One of our regular readers sends us this image of the aftermath of a seagull snatching a sandwich from his wife at the bus station. 

Our correspondent told us earlier this week:

"I have just come in from work to find that my wife had been attacked by a vicious gull today while eating a small sandwich while waiting at the bus station for a bus into Inverness. She had just finished work & was having a quick bite to eat before going shopping & had just gone to take a bite of the sandwich when it swooped to grab the sandwich without warning & as a result she now has a badly bruised cut on her bottom lip."

We had an update today with picture, our Gurn regular added: "she had to go and get a tetanus shot and is now on antibiotics."

Please be aware Gurnites if having an al fresco snack in some of the current breeding hotspots because you may be putting temptation Salty's way and yourself perhaps at risk. There was a discussion about seagulls at last Wednesday's River Community Council meeting and the situation remains the same - the Council will not remove nests from private property. 

Nairn Health Care news May 2016

Information below supplied by Nairn Health Care


Nairn Healthcare is sad to say goodbye to GP Partner, Dr Malcolm Simmons who will be leaving us on the 27th May for a new post in Forres. We wish Dr Simmons all the very best. 

Dr John Pitman has been with the Practice as a locum GP since the end of 2014 and we are delighted to announce that he is now a permanent member of the NHG team.


Nairn Healthcare would like to recommend to patients with internet access to try out ALISS (A Local Information System for Scotland). Almost like a search engine, ALISS lets browsers search for groups and clubs within Nairn and the surrounding areas. So if you are looking for an exercise class, something for relaxation or would like to join a friendship club, ALISS is able to tell you of your options. Please visit to make use of this worthwhile website.

Home Fire Safety Visit

Did you know that every hour of every day there is a house fire in Scotland? It is important to know how to reduce the chances of fire happening in your home and if it does, how to protect yourself.

Cooking accidents, overloaded sockets, faulty appliances and smoking are just some of the reasons why there are so many house fires in Scotland.

Fire can happen to anyone however, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service offer a FREE Home Fire Safety Visit and FREE Smoke Alarms to make sure your home is as safe from fire as it can be. The visit takes around 20 minutes and can be organised at a time that suits you, day or night. To book a free Home Fire Safety Visit, please call 0800 0731999, text “CHECK” to 61611 or visit Information booklets are available at Nairn Healthcare’s reception desk.

Loch Ness Etape

The Practice wishes to congratulate Dr Jonathan Ball and Dr Adrian Baker on their fantastic effort in the Loch Ness Etape.

The Loch Ness Etape is a 66-mile cycle around iconic Loch Ness supporting Macmillan Cancer Support. They completed the course in 3hrs 2m and 3hrs 13m respectively.

Sun Protection

Recently, the UK has been experiencing some of the hottest days of the year so far. Although it’s great to have some sun shining, we still need to protect our skin with suitable clothing, seeking shade and applying sunscreen.

Sunscreen should be suitable for your skin type and block both UVA and UVB radiation, at least SPF15 should be applied and the product shouldn’t be applied if after its expiry date. 

Children and babies have more sensitive skin than adults so please take extra care to protect them. Children under 6 months should be kept out of direct strong sunlight. There are sunscreens available that are formulated for children and babies, these are less likely to irritate their skin. 

If you do happen to get sunburnt, paracetamol and ibuprofen will ease the pain by helping to reduce inflammation. Sponge the sore skin with cool water and apply aftersun lotion. If you feel unwell or the skin swells or blisters, please seek medical help and stay out of the sun until all redness has gone.

For more information on sun protection, please visit

Home Visits

Requests for home visits should only be made if you are unfit to travel to one of the surgeries. Home Visits are at the Doctor’s discretion and are not a patient entitlement. Visit requests are handled by the receptionist who will ask for a little information to pass onto the Duty GP

During the month of April, GPs visited 129 patients that required to be seen in their own home. They also saw 110 patients who are cared for in one of the local care homes and the health care assistants visited 41 patients requiring blood tests who can’t come into the surgery.

If possible, please request a home visit before 10.30am

Murd puddle joy as Liz fixes Firhall Bridge path pond