Sunday, September 21, 2014

Nairn 4 Deveronvale 0 - pictures from Donald Matheson

Individual images here.

Red Cross looking for shop manager in Nairn? Another charity shop for the High Street?

We've added a question mark to the title of this post because job ads for shop staff in Nairn might not always be what they seem - remember the Aldi ad?  

One of the rumours we did hear during the summer however was that a charity was poised to take over the former DE Shoes shop. That would be boost for Nairn High Street if it happened - we'll just have to wait and see. Anyway folks the job advert has appeared on this page here. 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

County fans centenary baton coming home - images from Murray MacRae of events earlier today

Thanks to Murray for his pictures from the Links this morning as County Fans carried the Centenary Baton the final few hundred yards of its journey that began at the start of the West Highland Way earlier this month. Video coming soon too. 

Individual images here. Full screen slideshow here. 

UPDATE: Video of the event

"Scotland’s independence debate has just begun, according to the Nairn Academy pupils..."

A former Academy pupil himself, the editor of the Spectator, Fraser Nelson was in Nairn and reports on the aftermath of the referendum for the Telgraph:

Friday, September 19, 2014

This time sport not politics - another flash mob photo opp at the Bandstand on Saturday - everyone welcome

Show your support for your local Highland League football club when a County Centenary fun event kicks off at midday tomorrow down at the harbour.

In the grey morning light of a day somewhat less historic than yesterday

There will be deep disappointment in the local YES camp this morning (this observer can testify to that) but if the bag of a fag packet devo deal from the three Westminster leaders develops into real radical change then Scotland will be the winner. How that progresses remains to be seen however, with more voices joining the disgruntled Westminster MPs who are unhappy with the (as yet mystery) package Here in Scotland though both sides talk this morning of healing divisions but generally, the referendum campaign has been good humoured in Nairn, the posters will come down and life will quickly return to normal and friends and even families on both sides of the referendum debate will find other things to talk about. Life goes on. 

It was remarkable to see the large numbers of voters heading for the polling stations (around 90% in Nairn). People stopped to engage with the YES and NO folk outside Millbank, there seemed to be a desire to savour the day whatever the result. It is perhaps unlikely that we will ever see 90% turnouts again in our lifetimes but hopefully people will stay engaged; there was a suggestion from someone on the radio that “you don’t have to be a politician to be involved in politics.” Here’s hoping that the input from the young and other newly activated voters (it wasn’t just 16-18 year olds asking the way to the polling station entrance) continues because politicians at all levels will be inclined to perform better if every move they make is under public scrutiny. Please stay involved folks.

One of our readers articulates his referendum aftermath thoughts in a post below and states “we’ll need to stay on guard against remote decision makers”. Indeed, soon traffic lights and planning decisions will be back on the top of the agenda. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if at sometime in the future we could move to a point where the planners and other authorities listen to the local community instead of telling us what to do. The traffic needs to go the other way back up the chain. Communities need to be in control. How to achieve that in a continuing atmosphere of austerity though? However we voted yesterday we have to stay united as a community in getting the best deal for Nairn and the County hinterland beyond. A big barney perhaps looms for the best DevoMax deal for Scotland but we need to continue to generate heat on the micro level too and stand up for our collective corner. Devolution for Nairnshire too please!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A semi-optimistic gurn from one of our regular readers

Our correspondent writes:

"I'm not local but I love this place and will never move from Nairn. How I got here is only of interest to me! My family is here and it's home to us. Because of my work, I meet and talk to a lot of people. Anyhow, everybody I’ve spoken to has had strong feelings and opinions about the referendum. Apathy has been absent. It's been a long campaign. Some of us will get the result we wanted and some will be disappointed. That’s how it was always going to be and anyone, on either side, who looks forward to a long victory celebration, might be disappointed too. 

The reason is this: it will not be important tomorrow how we voted today.

We’ll still be here and we’ll still all have to live and work together. ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, we need to remain good neighbours, positive about the many good things about Nairn and to make the best of things that will still need to be improved.

It’s deluded to imagine that politicians in either Edinburgh or London care about us, except when they need our votes to keep themselves in a job. As a separate, sovereign country or as part of the larger Union, we’ll still be subject to a centralised and impersonal system, and we’ll need to stay on guard against remote decision makers. The Gurn is a strong local voice. Whatever the result today, local voices need to be heard even more. Good luck. "

Official confirmation necessary but the Gurn understands 90% turnouts in Nairn

Liz and Colin told this observer that the turnout at Millbank and the Seamans Hall was 90%. Incredible figures in our time - when was the last time that happened if ever?
Great craic tonight between YESers and No camp at Millbank

Queues at Millbank School and Seaman's Hall as polling stations open in Nairn

An overcast day but looking slightly brighter as this small post goes to pixel and sun promised for the afternoon. A little earlier there were queues of a dozen or so people
Early birds at Millbank
waiting for the polling stations to open at seven o' clock at both venues in Nairn. Never been asked if I wanted to keep the polling card before - nice souvenir of an amazing day. Never felt such a buzz coming out of a polling station. 

Mannie on the telly yesterday: "The word 'historic' almost seems inadequate'.

 YES or No please enjoy YOUR day!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Nairn County Centenary celebrations continue this Saturday 20th - commencing Nairn Harbour

It all starts at around 12.30 when the Kayakers bring the Centenary Baton into the harbour. The Baton has travelled the West Highland Way with a team of County Fans and been taken up the Great Glen on water by Nairn Kayak Club. In the process the Kayakers smashed the record for crossing Loch Ness in a canoe from Fort Augustus to Dores. The baton still has to make its way to Station Park but first on Saturday there will be a march behind a pipe band to the Links Bandstand where fans will pause for a picture. There will also be a BBQ.

Everyone welcome, just bring something yellow and black. The Centenary Baton is on display in the Town Barbers window on the top of the brae until Saturday. Full time table of events on the poster in the Gurn sidebar. For a bit of background on this fundraising initiative watch this Gurn interview with Stephen Bain and Ali Nichol

See you there - it's only once every hundred years :-)
Kayakers reach the Moray Firth, Picture David Walker

Another video from last night on the Links

Provost makes pro-Union intervention and uses Nairn's traffic lights in his argument

In the letters column of the Nairnshire Telegraph this week, Nairn Provost Laurie Fraser sets out his pro-Union view on the referendum. Summing up his arguments he refers to the Nairn traffic lights:

"We have two SNP councillors in Nairn, we have an SNP-led administration in Inverness, an SNP member of the Scottish Parliament and an SNP Scottish government. Yet, we still, after three years cannot get the traffic lights at the A96 and Lochloy Road to work properly. Where is the social justice for the poor motorist travelling through Nairn?"  More in this week's Nairnshire.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

YES gathering Nairn Links 16/09/14 more pictures

Individual images here. Full screen slideshow here. Includes images from Murray MacRae.

and a video

The Bandstand, Nairn Links, venue for YES Nairnshire gathering earlier tonight

The local YES Campaign activists took a little time off tonight and gathered for a few songs down at the bandstand. More pictures later and perhaps video.

A Lidl bit of extra choice at Balmakeith soon?

Both the Nairnshire and the Courier have articles on the Lidl proposal for a store next to Sainsbury's up at Balmakeith, the Nairnie splashing on the front page with the story. 

This observer would imagine that there might be those that would warn against this because of the potential effect on the High Street. The many Nairn residents that travel to shop in the company's stores in Inverness and Forres would be inclined to have the opposite view however. Full story in this week's Leopold Street Thunderer.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Nairn win cricket cup - 2nd eleven beat Fort William in reserve final

This from our cricketing correspondent:

"Nairn County Cricket Club 2nd eleven played Fort William Cricket Club in the Reserve League Cup Final at Strathpeffer.

On a glorious sunny day Nairn started off badly dropping catches and struggling to keep the 'Fort' from pushing 7 runs per over. However, once the first wicket was taken the momentum of the game changed and Nairn started to slow the scoring and took wickets. Fort William finished with a score of 149 runs after 30 overs.

Nairn went in to bat and got off to a great start when Fort William gave away 10 extras in the first over. Unfortunately this soon changed when Fort took the wicket of Alex Green off an acrobatic catch in the slips. Nairn progressed with steady batting and scored 100 runs in 17 overs. It looked like it was a steady plod to the finish except there was a scare when Richard Gerring and Brian Stewart (more senior batsmen) were run out in the same over. Fortunately this scare did not put off the young Jason Brandsma who scored the winning run. Nairn finished with 150 runs in 28 overs."   Images below from "RG-IV12"

Individual images here. Full screen slideshow here. 

YES campaigners in Nairn announce last minute event - Flash mob on the Links

The trend for gatherings of campaigners that has been seen in recent days across Scotland looks set to spread to Nairn as a local event has been announced for tomorrow night (Tues 16th). Details here on the YES Nairnshire facebook page. 

YES, NO or don't know, if you have anything planned for what are now the final days and hours of the referendum campaign please let us know and we'll post details. 

Nairn draw Huntly in next round of the Scottish Cup

The tie will be played on Saturday the 4th of October.

Action on the Station Brae traffic system - Murd Dunbar clarifies his complaint

Murd Dunbar told the Gurn in relation to the recent discussions at the River Community Council meeting concerning the traffic situation on Station Brae (see Gurn Article here):

"Let me make it quite clear as to what i would like to see removed are the two chicanes. The one on the coming down from Queenspark forces drivers to drive on the wrong side of the road and close to the pavement! The same applies to the one under the bridge. Before drivers could move over away from the pavement. I have no objection to leaving the wider pavement. As for two cars going under the bridge surely that could be left to the driver's own discretion as happened in the past. Coming out of the Balblair road requires a bit of commonsense and that could be helped by removing or possible lowering the wall on the corner to allow better vision (Council property? ) But the removal of the two islands on the brae are A PRIORITY to what I think will prevent some one getting hurt as the situation at the moment is a accident waiting to happen."

Bikes on the links - picture

The logistics of the Coast to Coast compeition obviously include a pick up of bicycles back in Nairn once the competitors have reached the West and finished their race.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Deveronvale 0 Nairn 1 - pictures from Donald Matheson of Saturday's Scottish Cup tie

Individual images here.  SFA video highlights here.

Food for thought as River CC discuss Sandancer site restaurant application Mark 2

On Wednesday night one of the items of planning matters discussed by Tommy Hogg and his colleagues was the new application for the Sandancer building down at the harbour. The changes are outlined in a supporting information to the application available on the Highland Council’s e-planning site. Here’s a brief section from that supporting document that outlines the reasoning behind the new application: 

“In the original submitted planning application, the Planning department felt that the proposed design was too domestic in style and that there was an opportunity to have more of a  'landmark/feature' building for the site. Therefore this new revised and larger building now has two  full storeys so that at ground floor level there can be more of a direct connection between the  building and the public, an Ice Cream and Pizza Parlour has been added which can be accessed  directly off of the public path and to the sea (north) side has access onto a small patio area. This   now means that in effect the two public elevations of the building have interest and activity. The   remainder of the ground floor will be given over to Kitchens, servicing, storage etc. which allow all   of the first floor to be a Restaurant area. This first floor level will allow spectacular views from  inside the building out over the Moray Firth and out over the Harbour, balconies have also been   included to allow a certain amount of outside dining or just to admire the views.”

Tommy and his colleagues discussed the parking arrangements and the management of the area around the Sandancer. The meeting noted that Tommy would discuss matters with the ward manager Liz Cowie as the area comprises common good land. Tommy said: 

“Apart from that I’ve not problem at all. It’s long overdue down there, they need someone to tidy the place up a bit.”

The application has so far attracted two objections but also seven letters of support. This material too can be read on the Council’s e-planning site here.

Strong views about the application have also been expressed on a new Facebook page that popped up recently entitled “Building(s) in Nairn”. That page hasn’t been going long but there are some interesting discussions about various Nairn properties.

Parking complaints - Liz MacDonald responds to Community Councillors

At their regular meeting on Wednesday night Nairn River Community Councillors discussed the lack of parking enforcement in Nairn. Liz was present and she responded when Iain Henderson said that the Council now had responsibility for parking:

"Yes but we haven't figured out how it is going to be done yet Iain, it has to come to a report. They are looking at different methods to be sympathetic to different areas. They're looking at using our existing staff and giving them powers to enforce and decriminalise it, so there's a whole load of issues that will be coming forward that we...the police gave it up and we we'rent ready for it but we have to take it over."

Jeanne Tolmie then said; "But it is no excuse not to sort the traffic out."

Liz responded: "I know but if people are parking illegally on pavements and things then that is still is the police's responsibility."

Scottish Cup Deveronvale 0 Nairn 1 - pictures Kenny MacLeod

A goal from Sean Webb means County progress into the next round of the Scottish Cup. 
Individual images here