Saturday, December 23, 2023

Video! Getting in the sea! @NairnCounty go for a Christams dook in aid of @Mikeysline1 and @teamhamishnairn


Getting in the sea! @NairnCounty go for a Christams dook in aid of @Mikeysline1 and @teamhamishnairn

Well done County players and fans that took part. Over on the Links there was still a good covering of snow. Great to see the team and club spirit on display despite the weather. Looking forward to the rest of the season and some more cracking football. If you can, get yourself along to Station Park in 2024 - fixture list here.


Thursday, December 21, 2023

Stunning Solstice colour in the early evening skies today as nacreuos clouds show up inbetween the heavy showers - videos

Mrs Gurnmeister was having a wander around Facebook this afternoon and was reading an article on the hugely popular Highlands and Islands Weather pages urging their readers to keep an eye out for nacreous clouds. She happened to glance out of the window and saw that it was happening right here in Nairn. I get ordered to get a couple of camera cards sorted etc and to follow her down the garden. Here's the results. Still images to follow. What a super display for the Winter Solstice.



Tuesday, December 19, 2023

2,004,709 free bus journeys by young people in the Highlands

 Mr and Mrs Gurnmeister live the bus pass dream too, being over sixty and quite often go somewhere for a coffee and a bit of shopping. Has the time come to go the whole way and make all bus journies free in Scotland - if we want to get people out of their cars the would this be a good thing to do? 

Anyway, here's a press release from the Scottish Green MSP Ariane Burgess

"Free bus travel for everyone under 22 will have a huge impact for young people travelling in the Highlands over Christmas, says Ariane Burgess, the Scottish Green MSP for the Highlands & Islands.

Since the scheme was launched in January 2022, young people in The Highlands have taken 2,004,709 free journeys, using their free bus pass which allows them to travel anywhere in Scotland.

Scotland is the only country in the UK to offer free bus travel for all young people, which was introduced following negotiations between the Scottish Greens and the Scottish Government.

An incredible 700,000 young people across Scotland have been able to take over 100 million free bus journeys in total.

Ariane Burgess, the Scottish Green MSP for the Highlands & Islands said: “This can be an expensive time of year for young people and their families, making free bus travel even more vital. 

“It will allow young people to visit their family and friends, and is opening up our community and our country. It’s a big boost for our environment, and will be cutting our emissions and reducing the numbers of cars on the road.

“Every free bus journey means more money in people’s pockets, which will be hugely welcome for families who are being hit with bigger bills and extra costs over winter. But free bus travel is not just for Christmas, it is supporting families across the Highlands all year round.

“It is one of the proudest and most positive achievements of devolution, and I am delighted that it has been delivered with Scottish Greens in government.

“I want every young person to have the same fantastic benefits and opportunities. I am delighted that so many young people have already signed up and encourage all of those who have yet to do so to visit and register for their card today.”

Friday, December 15, 2023

New Nairn Academy planning application lodged

 Highland Council Press Release:

A planning application has been submitted for the erection of a replacement secondary school, car parking, sports pitches and demolition of the existing Nairn Academy.

Balfour Beatty has been appointed as the design and build contractor and Reiach And Hall Architects are the Council’s agents working in conjunction with the Council's in-house Property teams to deliver the project.

A replacement school building for Nairn Academy was included in Phase 2 of the Scottish Government's Learning Estate Investment Programme announced in December 2020, and funding for the project is included in the reprofiled capital programme approved by Council in January 2021.

The planning application for the replacement Nairn Academy can be viewed on the Council’s online eplanning website at: (external link) by putting 23/05756/FUL in the search where public comment can be made.

More information about the project can be found on the Council’s website at this link (external link).

The new building is programmed to be operational from August 2026 with the demolition of the existing building and external works to follow.

Monday, December 04, 2023

A roundabout for the entrance to Ardersier Port (the old McDermotts yard) on the B9092 Nairn to Ardersier

Councillor Paul Oldham in his latest newsletter brings us a wealth of information about what the Highland Council have been up to; "£108 million of cuts to come over three years," for instance. You can read his latest news letter here. 

Via a couple of paragraphs and a couple of links he shows us what is planned for the top of the road on the B9092 and for Ardersier Port in general if all goes well. 

Mnay readers will remember the days of the shifts clocking on and off at McDermotts and the large volumes of traffic that generated. It will be interesting to see how many jobs are created at the port but if we see similar volumes of traffic coming and going in the future it is hard to see how the A96 as it is presently constituted  could cope without further long delays. Paul does say: "They also want to build a roundabout on the A96 at junction with the road down to the port but that will come later." 

Of course in an ideal world there would be access to an all singing and dancing Nairn Bypass where the later roundabout might go making access to the Port a lot simpler. We do seem to be back in the realms of people suggesting that a by-pass will never be seen in their lifetime however. Last week in Holyrood Fergus Ewing asked the Deputy First Minister: "By what year will the contstruction of the Nairn by-pass be completed? He got a long answer talking about commintments etc but he didn't get a definite year date in response. 

We live in interesting times and if you walk alongside the A96 on some of these still frosty days you get a good whiff of exhaust fumes in the air. A by-pass would be a really good thing to have.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Nairn redevelopment opportunity at Courthouse Lane

 Highland Council Press Release:

"The Highland Council has a redevelopment opportunity at 3-5 Courthouse Lane, Nairn (former finance office) that is planned to be for sale early 2024, and to ensure maximum opportunities, welcomes interest from private/commercial buyers and Community led organisations that may consider a Community Asset Transfer (CAT).

The property is located on Courthouse Lane, near to Nairn High Street with amenities and parking close by. Built in 1848, the property is a blond sandstone, Grade B listed building extending to approximately 98.00 sq m (1,055 sq ft), together with an area for parking to the front. Most recently the property has been used as an office within Class 4 of the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) (Scotland) Order 1997. However, the property may be suitable for a variety of alternative uses, subject to planning.

Viewing Arrangements will be by prior arrangement only. Please contact:

Asking Price: Offers invited.

Rateable Value & Business Rates: The site is understood to have a rateable value of £9,000. The 2023/24 Annual Business Rate is 49.8p. If you believe you may be exempt of liability for Non Domestic Rates, it is your responsibility to apply for the appropriate exemption. EPC Rating - G. Submission of Offers: A closing date by which offers must be submitted may be fixed later. Prospective purchasers should “note interest” to be notified of any closing date. All offers should be submitted in standard Scottish legal by email to

The Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 aims to empower communities by giving them control over assets so they can work together to make better communities.

The Community Asset Transfer (CAT) guidance available here (external link), provides an overview of the process and sources of further information."

Saturday, November 18, 2023

A Community Newspaper for Nairnshire - Large turnout at Public Meeting - project to move forward after overwhelming expression of support

The meeting in the main hall of the community centre on Thursday night was very well attended with around 150 people who had come along to hear what the steering group had to say. They heard from all of the steering group in turn about various aspects of the research so far and how the next steps might proceed. The project will be a community owned ‘SCIO’ (Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation) with a two-tier system of governance. Board and Members. The steering group are now looking for further volunteers to register and help bring a community newspaper into being.

There was a Q&A session after the intros and update and many positive suggestions were made
It was evident how much the Nairnshire Telegraph was missed by the community and there is an overwhelming willingness to proceed and create another paper for the benefit of the community.
You can see a copy of the slideshow used here. A few words delivered to the meeting by the Gurnmeister here. Below is the QR code to take you to an online Google form to register your interest as a volunteer for the future paper or perhaps you may prefer simply the link. Please get involved folks, there’s a lot to be done but the result will be worth it. Members and trustees wanted, whether you have previous Newspaper skills or not - all welcome.

More news soon.

Countdown to Christmas will take place on Saturday, November 25 - lights switch on - two markets, live performances, street theatre and a Santa’s grotto

Community is at the heart of this year;s Christmas Lights Switch on in Nairn which will incorporate two markets, live performances, street theatre and a Santa’s grotto.

Countdown to Christmas, which will take place on Saturday, November 25 is being supported by a number of local businesses who have given donations to help the event go ahead.

Sainsbury’s, McDonald’s and the Co-Op are supporting the Santa’s Grotto with chocolatey gifts for the children who visit him at Nairn Library whilst Nairn Golf Club have made a financial donation to the event and West Country Trees has gifted three Christmas trees to the town.

The event will kick off at 10am with the lights being switched on at 4pm. It will take place over two locations, the Town Centre and Nairn Community & Arts Centre.

The event is being organised for a fourth year by Nairn Connects BID with support from Inverness Farmers Market and volunteers from the community. 

From left: Isla Thomson, Gordon Holding, Taya MacKenzie, Ali Asher, Hayden Craig, Tracey Botting, Lucy Harding (Nairn BID manager), James Jordan, Iain Fyfe and Morag Holding.

Nairn BID manager Lucy Harding said: “We are once again looking forward to a busy and exciting day over the two locations in Nairn. This event really is about community and bringing people together which is what Christmas is all about too.

“From 10am there will be entertainment from local bands and community groups in both the High Street and at the community centre. This year, our stage will be set up outside the town house with the street market running all the way the along the High Street. We have a circus skills workshop and fire breather which will be located at the Brae, and round on Lepold Street, we will have songs and story time from the Mad Hatters of Moray who will also be mingling with the crowds.

“There will be ponies, huskies and of course the opportunity to shop till you drop at our beautiful shops and of course from the stalls put in place by Inverness Farmers Market.

“The switching on of the lights takes place at 4pm and we have a Christmas decoration competition running for one lucky person to win the chance to switch them on.

“This is the start of the Christmas festivities for the town. We have seen restaurants launching festive menus, there are numerous events on including Twas the Night Before Christmas by CAST a newly formed theatre group and the panto Hansel & Gretel by The Little Theatre and there will also be carols at The Bandstand on the Links which is being supported by Morag and Gordon Holding from The Havelock and Paul Geddes from The Bandstand Bar & Restaurant. There is a lot to look froward to over the coming weeks.”

The Countdown to Christmas event will take place on November 25. Full details and timings are available on the Nairn BID website

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Nairn The Brae. Sustrans Places for Everyone (PfE) Concept Design Projec

 The Gurn has received the following press release outling how the brae consultation will go forward. It isn't without its critics however and regular readers of Nairn Social media pages will perhaps have discovred that already. Whatever your views there is no a chance to have your say on the High Street Brae's future:

Businesses and the public are being encouraged to attend the first consultation event regarding the possible pedestrianisation of the Brae in Nairn.

The event will take place on Monday, November 27 in the Nairn Community & Arts Centre from 6.30 to 9pm. It will provide an opportunity for the public to have their say and share ideas on how to shape the High Street.

The consultation follows a number of public consultations which were held in Nairn by The Highland Council in 2019 to find out how the local community felt about their town centre. One of the main themes to emerge was how to get around the area with less car dependency.

As result of these consultations, The Highland Council published the Nairn Active Travel Masterplan in 2021 which set out 16 interventions to support the movement of people by walking and cycling.

The aim for Nairn Active Travel Masterplan is to encourage more people to walk, wheel and cycle for their everyday journeys, making car use less dominant. The priorities include creating a walking, wheeling and cycling network, improving the high street pedestrian experience.

The Brae is identified within the masterplan as intervention number five.

To accelerate delivery of these interventions and provide much sought after improvement, during 2022, Nairn Connects Bid, in partnership with the Council submitted an application to Places for Everyone (PfE), an active travel infrastructure programme funded by the Scottish Government and administered by Sustrans Scotland.

The application was successful and £37,000 was secured to push forward with the feasibility study.

This funding will allow the consultants Connected Transport Planning, to explore how active travel can be incorporated into the lower section of High Street and look at options to improve the space and reduce the severance impact of the A96(T) between the Harbour and High Street.

Councillor Ken Gowans, Chair of the Council’s Economy and Infrastructure Committee said: “Following successful funding through the scheme, consultants are now in place, and a community consultation event will be held later this month. These events will provide local residents and business operators alike the opportunity to have a say.”

Councillor Michael Green, Chair of the Nairnshire Area Committee, added: “This funding will enable the Council to explore how active travel can be incorporated into the lower section of High Street and explore options to improve the space and reduce the severance impact of the A96 between the Harbour and High Street. I would encourage local people to take part in the community consultation event and share ideas with us on how we can shape the local High Street.”

Nairn BID manager, Lucy Harding said: “This project has been a long time coming and we are delighted that now the funding is in place, things are moving quickly. We urge as many people to come along to give their views.

“The case for pedestrianisation has been raised in the past, but with Highland Council backing the idea in its Active Travel Masterplan, we anticipate a more receptive response in the current climate.


Wednesday, November 15, 2023

North Cup will be on display at Station Park this Saturday 18th


Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Latest Council goings on from Paul Oldham - budget gap of £60-70 million to find and other news

 All the latest from Paul here. 

Police appeal for information following damage to play equipment and outbuildings at Rosebank Primary

The Police Scotland, Highland Islands Facebook page reads:

We are appealing for information after significant damage was caused to play equipment and outbuildings at Rosebank Primary School Nursery, Nairn.
The damage was caused during the October school holidays and is thought to have occurred specifically during the evening of Thursday 19th October.
Enquiries have established that noises were heard in the school grounds during this time and young people were seen in the grounds of nearby Millbank Primary School the same evening where attempts were also made to start a fire.
Anyone with information regarding either incident is requested to contact Police Scotland by phoning 101 quoting reference 1421 of 23rd October, 2023.
Information can also be provided anonymously to Crimestoppers via 0800 555 111.

Sunday, October 22, 2023

County legend leaves club to manage Clach


Sunday, October 15, 2023

300 homes for Delnies and all the rest of it - Cllr Paul Oldham gives you an insight into the planning application in the latest article on his website.

There's a lot to take in folks but Cllr Paul Oldham has produced what amounts to a quick guide to this latest planning application for Delnies. Below is a snapshot from his site. You can read his article here. Paul also links to the application pages on the Highland Council website. 


Wednesday, October 04, 2023

Three local community councils fall into abeyence

"Cawdor & West Nairnshire, East Nairnshire and Nairn West & Suburban failed to attract half the maximum membership so won't be established for the new term," states Highland Councillor Paul Oldham on the popular social media page Nairn our Town. 

He goes on to say: 

"The other two Auldearn and Nairn River did get at least 50% so will continue but not over 100% so there will be no election, and they may need to co-opt to top up their membership.
East Nairnshire was already not operating but the loss of Cawdor & West Nairnshire and Nairn West & Suburban, both very active community councils, will be sorely felt.
The next opportunity for nominations to be made to those Community Council’s will be in January 2024"

Friday, September 29, 2023

Nairn Woman turns trash into cash

Lisette Davidson wins £250 through Keep Scotland Beautiful's partnership with LitterLotto

A Highland woman has turned trash into cash and won £250 thanks to an innovative partnership.

Lisette Davidson is a winner of the partnership between environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful and behaviour change app LitterLotto.

The partnership, launched in November 2022, encourages more people to bin their litter and offers weekly prizes ranging from £50 to £500.

Lisette, from Nairn, believes the initiative is a great way to help keep Scotland beautiful and encourage people to start litter picking.

The 59-year-old said: “I’ve always been a litter picker. We used to go for walks when my children were little, we’d take them for walks and we’d take a bag with us, although there wasn’t quite as much litter as there is now, but we’d always take a bag and pick it up as we went along.

“When we went for picnics we’d always take our litter with us too. I’m a keen recycler and reuser as well.

“We’ve always been keen but more so now we live near the sea, I just hate to see litter on the beach.”

Lisette, as well as being a committed litter picker, is also a keen competition entrant.

When asked about Keep Scotland Beautiful’s partnership with LitterLotto, she said: “[It’s] the perfect chance to combine my love of entering competitions as a hobby with the fact I love keeping the place I live beautiful and protecting nature.

“Just this morning I picked up an enormous piece of long, blue rope that had been tied around a bush. Any animal getting caught in that could be in serious trouble.

“When you see things like that, or broken glass, it makes your blood boil, and you wonder how can people be so thoughtless?”

Not content with getting involved herself, Lisette has managed to spread the word to others too.

“If I’m taking a picture of binning litter and someone walks past while I’m doing it, I’m telling them all about it because I’m so passionate,” she said. “Why shouldn’t you be rewarded for doing something that is helping everyone?”

Lisette said the place she lives is a popular place for people to visit, but stressed everyone must take responsibility for their litter.

She said: “Animals are ingesting plastic which is wrong. If my husband and I go for a walk along the beach, we’ve rescued squid and starfish, but apart from that we’re picking up plastic, bottles.

“If people don’t have the responsible attitude to take their litter with them, all the wildlife that they come to see in this part of the world is going to die. It’s terrible.”

Lisette believes this initiative is a brilliant way to get people involved in litter picking.

“A monetary incentive is a start, and it’s a huge start,” she said. “But the reality is if people listen to their own conscience and start off in a small way, by doing a little bit here and there and other people get to know about it, it’s like a chain and other people will get more excited about it.”

Catherine Gee, Deputy Chief Executive at Keep Scotland Beautiful, said: “I’m delighted to see that Lisette has been rewarded for doing the right thing through our partnership with LitterLotto.

“This collaboration is all about encouraging people to help tackle the country’s litter emergency and it’s brilliant to see people across the country getting involved.

“I’m looking forward to seeing many more Scottish winners benefitting from helping to keep Scotland beautiful.”

Carly Di Crescienzo, Local Authority Campaigns Manager at LitterLotto, said: “It's great to see our Scottish users benefiting from this regional jackpot.

“We hope that our partnership with Keep Scotland Beautiful will encourage others to get involved.

“Our users help keep their communities clean and green and with LitterLotto you can win cash while doing good.”

The LitterLotto app is available to download for free on the App Store and Android Store.

This innovative venture is one of the many ways Keep Scotland Beautiful is tackling the litter emergency. A recent national poll conducted by the environmental charity found that two thirds of people believe that litter is an issue in their local area, and 87% that it is an issue across Scotland

Visit the LitterLotto website for more information.

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

A wee blether with Nairn Academy Support Staff strikers 26/09/23

 The Gurn headed up to the junction of Duncan Drive and the A96 this morning to have a wee blether with the Nairn Academy support staff who are striking for a better offer from COSLA.


Saturday, September 23, 2023

Friday, June 23, 2023

"All Systems Go for a community led Local Place Plan for the Nairn area!"

 "NICE is delighted to announce that- IT IS HAPPENING AT LAST !
All systems are go for the first ‘community led’  Local Place Plan to be developed for the Nairn and Nairnshire area in 2023.

A Local Place Plan gives the people who live here and use local services, the power to decide what the future priorities should be for development and use of land and buildings in their local area.

NICE, Nairn‘s Community Development Trust (with more than 600 local members across Nairnshire) is taking the lead on this community led process with two local Community Councils (Nairn River and Nairn West and Suburban) and Nairn BID business member organisation already on board."

More on the NICE Nairn website here.

The Fonsecas with support by Fi McBean - at the Bandstand - this Saturday 24th June at 8.30 pm


Monday, May 22, 2023

Cllr Paul Oldham's weekly report: "Nairn Academy, Auldearn speeding proposals, Nairnshire demographics, CCTV"

 Many Gurn readers will have found their way to Paul's very informative weekly reports already. If you haven't seen any of them yet we recommend you head over to his newsletter site.

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Tuesday, April 04, 2023

Have a couple of hours to spare this Saturday (8th April)? Why not drop in by for phase 2 of the Community Orchard planting on the brae below Nairn Cemetery.

Bring a spade if you can, if not, then just come for a blether with folk that will be on the brae. We'd like to hear ideas for future plantings in and around Nairn. You can also find out about things the Green Hive and the Allotments Orchard Group will be doing during the year. If you can't make it and would like to go on the Apple Network mailing list then please contact 

Saturday looks like being a good day too. See you there! Pictures here of Phase 1 last year.


Sunday, March 12, 2023

From the Gurn's gardening correspondent - "Looking around the town, it is pleasing to report that the colourful displays of flowers are already appearing along the roadsides."

There might be deep snow across the Pennines and stranded motorists on the M62. But spring officially arrives at the beginning of March. And here in Nairn the sun is shining, and the Gurn's gardening correspondent has stirred from long hibernation. Looking around the town, it is pleasing to report that the colourful displays of flowers are already appearing along the roadsides. The volunteers of Keeping Nairnshire Colourful have spent many hours digging and planting crocus bulbs in several locations - and then making sure that zealous contractors and Council machines carefully navigate around the sites.

Now the results are visible for the folk of Nairn and anyone passing through the town to see and enjoy. The purple flowers beside the A96 on the way out towards Inverness are looking good. At Moss-side Road two areas of white blooms have appeared. Beech Avenue has yellow crocuses, and the cemetery field led by the Grantown Road has a multi-coloured display. In the shade by the hospital car park flowers are just beginning to appear. The areas alongside the A96 towards Sainsburys at Balmakeith have fared less well: as that area was left to go wild, the bulbs have been fighting a losing battle under the bigger tougher plants that have been allowed to flourish there. And in the little leisure parkie between James' kiosk and the swimming pool, most of the bulbs planted by KNC a year or two seem to have been wiped out or mown to destruction although a few snowdrops survive in the sheltered area under the trees.

Most people probably don't pause to think how all these colourful displays came to be there. So it is perhaps worth a brief thank you to the enthusiasts of Keeping Nairnshire Colourful who put in many hours of work throughout the year for no reward other than the knowledge that they are making our town just a bit more attractive for everyone to enjoy.

And it's not over yet. Another few weeks and the golden yellow daffodils will be appearing, and perhaps - like Wordsworth - we will all see them "fluttering and dancing in the breeze".
 A gallery of images below showing the various displays around town. 

Bhon neach-conaltraidh gĂ irnealaireachd againn

Saturday, March 11, 2023

Feasability study for a 'Nairn Wastebusters'

Press release from Highland Council: 

A tender in respect of a Reuse, Repurpose and Recycle Feasibility Study for Nairn has just been issued to the market on the Public Contracts Scotland website.

The Highland Council is seeking a consultancy organisation to undertake a feasibility study into the proposed idea of a further Reuse, Repurpose and Recycle Pathfinder project, to be located within the Nairn waste recycling centre.

The study will assess the practicality and viability of the venture and identify any potential opportunities or issues. Upon conclusion, the final report will provide a basis for a business development case for the site based on the recommendations.

The study will act as a Pathfinder model for the Nairn Recycling Centre site, while the feasibility study should also provide a second more general view and consideration to the potential application of this model at a number of other suitable sites across Highland.

Chairman of the Nairnshire Area Committee, Councillor Michael Green, commented: “The Feasibility Study will look wider than just waste strategy and will consider wider implications locally for the model, including, but not limited to, local employment opportunities, green job development, contributions to net zero commitments and developing reuse/recycle concepts.

He continued: “This is an exciting proposal for Nairn and could play an important role in ensuring that items are reused until the end of their useful life, decrease manufacturing needs and ultimately significantly reduce the amount of material deposited into landfills”.

The feasibility study is being co-funded funded by Highland Council and Highlands & Islands Enterprise.

Thursday, January 05, 2023

"Its amazing what you can achieve when everyone is working together." An update on local projects from Cllr Michael Green has a wee blether with Councillor Michael Green. An update on plans for a Nairn Waste Busters, changes to the Nairn Common Good Fund and development at the harbour. "Its amazing what you can achieve when everyone is working together."


Update: Support for Michael from Sheena Baker, former Chair of Nairn West and Suburban Community Council who told the Gurn:

"Great to hear good  progress on all three topics. Each topic is important for the town and hopefully can progress speedily.I have prattled on for too long now about the importance of all the various organisations and interested parties working as Team Nairn. I wish all of our elected members success in achieving a consensual programme for the town and look forward to the CC’s, NICE, Greenhive, businesses and their organisations, plus any interested individuals or other organisations falling in line with the members to get the programme and funding in place and allocated to Nairn.Only then will things improve!Good luck Michael and your fellow Councillors."