Minutes of meeting held on 1st July 2015, Lethen Road Hall
Present – Roger Milton, David Brownless, Kyle Mackintosh, Diana Mitchell, Alistair Williamson
John Dolan - Nairnshire Telegraph
and 11 members of the public
Cllr Michael Green
Mr & Mrs Pullan
2. Minutes of the previous meeting - approved by Di Mitchell , seconded by Vicki Mackinnon
3. Matters Arising –
A96 Dualling/Nairn Bypass – Environmental survey work is beginning in the areas along the proposed line of the bypass.
Questions have been raised about the 20mph zone in the village and whether or not they are having any effect. The police have been asked if any additional patrols have been undertaken in the village and a member of the public in attendance confirmed that they had been seen observing the traffic near the school.
4. Correspendence –
A letter had been received from the Highland Council about the plans to restrict traffic over the Whitebridge near Clephanton to vehicles of less than 18 tonnes . This will have consequences for the roads in the area seeing changes in traffic levels, as drivers seek alternative routes.
The Community Council was invited to send a representative to the initial meeting for the next phase of the Leader funding programme. The Chairman attended on the Council’s behalf.
5. AGM –
The Chair gave a review of the work undertaken by the Community Council over the last year, including the meetings and consultations involved in the proposals for the bypass/A96 dualling, discussion with the National Trust for Scotland about works at the Doocot and the repairs and works carried out to the rose garden and an area near the cemetery.
The Christmas tree light switch on event goes from strength to strength with more villagers attending each year.
The Chair expressed his thanks to the other community councillors for their work over the year and also to the members of the public for attending the meetings. He spoke of the benefits of the work undertaken by community councils. In Auldearn, for example, the work involved in the overhaul of the Lethen Road Hall.
2014/ 2015 Financial report Balance Brought Forward £4007.41
Expenditure £ (278.25)
Closing balance £3729.16
Election of Office Bearers
Kyle Mackintosh - Treasurer Roger Milton Alistair Williamson
David Brownless – Secretary Diana Mitchell Vicki Mackinnon
Roger MiIton – Chairman Alistair Williamson Diana Mitchell
6. Wind turbine proposal – Blackpark
An application has been lodged to erect a wind turbine close to Blackpark Farm. The turbine has a total height of 68 meters (approx 224 feet).
Prior to the community council meeting , Cllr Mackintosh declared to the chair that, while he had no financial connection with the proposals, his family connections with the farm and the lessors of the ground where it is proposed to site the turbine, could potentially compromise his position as a community councillor.
He remained present at the meeting to offer answers to questions from members of the public about technical aspects of the application but was not party to the meeting held in camera at the conclusion of the public meeting to discuss Auldearn community council’s response to the application.
Concerns were voiced from the floor about the scale and position of the turbine, the potential impact on the visual amenity, particularly from the Househill, River Park & Balmakeith areas, the way it will sit in the landscape and also about the lack of information offered from the planning department of the Highland Council to those potentially affected by the turbine. The proximity of the proposed dualled A96/ Nairn bypass to the wind turbine site was discussed , with concerns voiced about the potential for the wind turbine to complicate or delay the works on the bypass.
One member of the public was very concerned by the siting of the turbine being close to the position recently selected for the new cemetery.
7. Village Projects
The works to be carried out to maintain the paths in the Lethen Road woods are expected to commence over the next two weeks.
An initial approach has been made to the Forest Commission Scotland Community Fund, which offers grants aimed at improving the health and wellbeing of people and their communities by assisting community participation to enhance opportunities for health and enjoyment and contribute to growth in learning and skills. This includes :
Schemes that promote physical activity e.g. walking schemes, safe routes to school, natural play and adventure play.
Developing materials that promote the health and wellbeing benefits of using woodlands
Establishment of volunteer groups and the induction of volunteers
Providing resources to involve communities in the decision making process of
managing their local woodland
The chair said it may be possible to apply for funding to assist in the formation of a group to ensure that maintenance work to areas like the Doocot can be undertaken in a more structured manner.
The meeting closed at 8.55