Saturday, June 24, 2017

Meanwhile over on the Gurn twitter account

If there's not much being posted here it's worth having a look at the Gurn twitter account. Quite a lot happens in the Nairn twittersphere these days. You don't have to have an account to look at tweets either. 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

John Finnie MSP - Marine Scotland and their S2S in Moray Firth application reports - "Who caused them not to advance?"

Highland MSPs John Finnie and Ed Mountain attended the Holyrood Parliament Public Petitions Committee this morning to discuss the Cromarty Rising petition on Ship to ship oil transfers and trust ports. The Committee agreed to keep the petition open and explore the issue further. 

The video is approximately 12 minutes long - worth watching if you have been following this issue. 

Moray Firth "marine interests" River CC turns down invitation to "focused workshop" and calls for public meeting instead

Last night at their regular meeting in the Nairn Community and Arts Centre NRCC turned down an invitation to send "one individual" to a "focused workshop" organised by the Moray Firth Partnership. An e-mail from the Moray Firth Partnership came into the public domain at the meeting, it read:

"The Moray Firth Partnership, under new manager, Vicky Junik, is building on previous regional marine planning discussions in the Moray Firth, particularly at the local level, and as such, would like to invite a small group of local community stakeholders with marine interests to a short focussed workshop in Nairn on Monday 26th June.

With the increasing demand for use of and access to the coast and sea, improving information and understanding of how marine space is used and developed is essential. Currently, data is lacking and is not easily accessible at the local scale where the impacts of decisions are felt by communities and stakeholders.

Exploring, demonstrating and understanding the options at the local level is crucial. Particularly how activities interact and potentially conflict; how they are represented and negotiated and how stakeholders can be engaged and empowered to participate and provide advice to improve and influence the decisions that affect them.

We would appreciate you nominating an individual who would be happy to take part in the discussions. We do have some flexibility on the timing of the meeting, so if you could please also indicate morning, afternoon or evening."

After some debate between River CC members with contributions from  members of the public present River CC decided to politely turn down the invitation given the concerns expressed - including that given the public concern over proposed Ship to Ship oil transfers it might be misinterpreted if only one individual representing the community group should go to a closed "focused workshop" and decided to call for a public meeting instead.

Members also wanted to know more about the Moray Firth Partnership worked and their relationship with the Cromarty Firth Port Authority and the nature of the funding they receive from the CFPA.

River CC members voted to send the following response to the Moray Firth Partnership:

"Nairn River Community Council 

·welcomes the interest shown by the Moray Firth Partnership in promoting discussion of regional marine planning issues in the Moray Firth; 

·points out that the most urgent and sensitive current issue is the proposal to seek a licence to conduct STS oil transfers in the waters of the Firth; 

·notes that there has already been substantial and widespread public discussion and action by residents in Nairn and in communities around both sides of the Firth on this specific issue;

·recalls that both River CC and West & Suburban CC submitted formal written objections to the original licence application; 

·draws attention to other matters of current concern - notably the problem of bathing water quality - and also to the government's latest policy initiative on marine recreation and tourism;

·does not believe that a "short focussed workshop" for a small group, convened at less than a week's notice, and limited to one individual participant representing the Nairn CCs and/or community, is an adequate or acceptable way of taking forward consideration of this and other related aspects of marine planning and management in and around the Firth; 

·and therefore proposes to respond to the Moray Firth Partnership's invitation by requesting them instead to convene a public meeting in Nairn at which Community Council members, local elected Councillors, and all other local community organisations [eg VisitNairn, the ANB, the Bathing Water Group, NICE, the harbour group, NRCG, and Crom/Nairn Rising] can engage in a round-table discussion about how the Moray Firth Partnership can more effectively reflect and represent the interests and concerns of local stakeholders in the development of local marine planning."

Ship to ship oil transfers and Trust Port accountability continues to be under Scottish Parliament Committee scrutiny

John Finnie MSP today (22/06/2017) welcomed the decision of the Scottish Parliament’s Public Petitions Committee to keep Cromarty Rising’s petition on Ship-to-ship oil transfers and trust port accountability open.

Mr Finnie, who has been campaigning on this issue for well over a year, spoke in favour of the petition at the committee meeting - calling for greater clarity around responsibilities relating to ship to ship transfers.

Commenting after the committee John Finnie said:

“I am pleased that the Public Petitions Committee decided to further investigate this matter. There is clearly much confusion over the process for ship to ship oil applications and I am hopeful that further scrutiny will provide much needed clarity.

“The Scottish Government have adopted a ‘nothing to do with us’ approach to this issue yet there are clear roles for SEPA, SNH and Marine Scotland – all Scottish Government agencies – to play in the process.

“There also remains concerns that a response prepared by Marine Scotland was stymied by Ministers. This is deeply concerning and requires further scrutiny.”

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Alasdair Beatson (piano) Nairn Community and Arts Centre Saturday 24th June 7.30 pm

Press release Music Nairn

Alasdair Beatson (piano)

Saturday 24th June 7.30pm

Nairn Community and Arts Centre

Tickets at the door

Pianist Alasdair Beatson who plays for Music Nairn on Saturday (24th) is highly regarded as a
distinctive and vibrant musician. As well as his established reputation as one of the UKs top chamber pianists, he also has a wide and varied repertoire, enjoying a regular association with the Scottish Ensemble. In addition to numerous chamber music projects, he recently toured concertos of Mozart and Haydn throughout Scotland and at Wigmore Hall.

His programme for Saturday is imaginatively varied with such classics as Beethoven Bagatelles Debussy’s Images and Schumann’s Kinderszenen contrasted with Satie, Bartok and Dohnanyi.

Concert begins at 7.30 at Nairn Community and Arts Centre with tickets at the door.

Here comes the sun - Summer Solstice on Nairn Beach 2017 - video

Grian-stad an t-samhraidh sona dhuibh uile - happy solstice to everyone

Individual images here.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Nairnshire rising case against the proposed ship to ship transfers is echoing round an empty space at the Scottish Government?

Here's this week's editorial from the Nairnshire Telegraph that to this observer says it very much like it is when it comes to the proposed ship to ship oil transfers in the Moray Firth. Get yourself a copy of the Nairnshire to read the front page article about the Nairnshire Rising meeting at the bandstand on the Links that was attended by the local MP Drew Hendry. 

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Team Hamish thank you

After Sunday's amazing event Team Hamish have given the Gurn an update on how things went:

'Team Hamish would like say a huge thank you to Nairn and the community for the fantastic support at our fundraising launch event. 'Run for Hamish', on Sunday 11th June. 

We were overwhelmed by the amazing numbers - over 1,100 participants and hundreds of spectators. Without all the help from volunteers, sponsors, support from local schools and businesses this would never have been achieved.

This is the start of creating a special outside area in Nairn, which will be a legacy for Hamish and will benefit everyone.

The monies raised, still accumulating, are in excess of £20,000.'

Friday, June 16, 2017

Drew Hendry MP having a blether with Nairnshire Rising - pictures Murray MacRae

Pictures Murray MacRae - Individual images here. 

Drew discusses campaign strategy to stop Ship to Ship oil transfers in the Moray Firth at the Links Bandstand with Nairnshire Rising.  

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Nairn Ceilidh Group - season 2017 starts on Thursday June 15th

Nairn Ceilidh Group have a big line up for their opening ceilidh of the new summer season which opens at the Nairn Community and Arts Centre this Thursday, June 15.

As well as dancing to the Nairn Ceilidh Band the audience are in for a treat with the delights of traditional singing duo Corralach, Eileen Solan and the wonderful harmonies of Sunntach.

As well as highland dancers and pipers it promises to be a packed evening of entertainment and the group are hoping for a big turn out on the opening night.

Chairman and MC of the ceilidhs Donald Wilson said: "Last year we had a great first season at the Community Centre. The ceilidhs are a great night out for families and we love to see visitors from all over the world joining in the fun. We keep admission charges down so it's an affordable night out and we hope to see you there."

Last year the group was recognised by Visit Nairn for their contribution to traditional entertainment for visitors to the town.

"It was totally unexpected and lovely to receive the award," said Donald.

"We have been indebted to tourist operators and Visit Nairn for their support over the years in selling their guests about the ceilidhs and we want to continue the ceilidhs which have been part of the summer scene now for more than 30 years."

Proceeds from the ceilidhs are distributed to local charities and organisations.

Images from #TeamHamish event - Nairn 11 June 2017

 Individual images here.

#TeamHamish registration at Nairn Community and Arts Centre - 11th June 2017 - video

The start of the #TeamHamish Fun and 10 mile runs were delayed 15 minutes due to the numbers that turned up to participate.

#teamHamish fun runners get underway - video

The massive turnout of fun runners took five minutes to pass as they set off on their route.

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Police have appealed for information after a woman was assaulted in the early hours of Sunday morning in Nairn.

The BBC website states:

"Police have appealed for information after a woman was assaulted in the early hours of Sunday morning in Nairn.

She was grabbed as she walked in the area of the town's Church Street and Mill Road at about 02:00.

The woman was not injured but left badly shaken by the incident, police said.

Officers said passing motorists may have recorded the attack or the moment the man approached the woman on dashboard-mounted cameras.

Det Con Graham Taylorson, the investigating officer, said: "This was a particularly distressing incident for the victim and so we are keen for any members of the public who have knowledge of this incident, are aware of any comments on social media or were in the area at the time, to come forward with information."

Shorewatch Thursday 8th June 11-2 pm Nairn Sailing Club