Latest News

End Of The Dome Now In Sight At Dounreay
Dounreay Dome and shaft
Dounreay Site Restoration Limited has submitted a planning application to the Highland Council covering a series of decommissioning projects expected to take place between 2018 and the site's shut down, also known as the interim end state. The application, which is the last of three planning phases covering the overall decommissioning of the site, follows engagement undertaken earlier this year including public events and an opportunity to comment on draft documents online.

Participatory Budgeting Steps Up
The announcement from COSLA that 1% of local authority spending is to be allocated through some kind of Participatory Budgeting process heralds a step change in terms of the scale of ambition for this method of allocating public funds - 1% equates to roughly £100m. To date, it's probably fair to say that most activity has centred on the allocation of relatively small pots of funding to local projects. This 1% commitment takes it to another level. What's not yet clear is what that level might look like. There should be some pointers in the mid-term evaluation of recent PB experience. So far in the Highland Council are Participatory Budgeting has been brought forward by putting relatively small amounts transferred from the local Discretionary Budget towards local votes to give money to local causes. Effectively allowing the public to choose rather than local councillors which groups should receive funds.
Caithness to the Côte D'Azur - A New Book
Caithness to the Cote Dazur
Caithness to the Côte D'Azur When the Monte Carlo Rally Started from John O'Groats Limited Edition of 300 numbered copies.  ‘Many excellent books have been written about the Monte Carlo Rally but despite the fact that the first British winner started the rally from Caithness in 1926, the Scottish connection during the pre war years has been largely overlooked. This may be due to the lack of an overall winner from among the John O'Groats starters in subsequent years because of the complex scoring system which made it virtually impossible for them to achieve outright victory.    More Books

Newsletter Award For Friends of the Far North Line  - Congratulations from
Friends of the Far North Line -Great Newsletter gets an award
MSP praises campaign group for award. The honorary vice-president of Friends of the Far North line has lodged a motion in the Scottish Parliament praising the campaign group for winning a top award. Highlands and Islands Labour MSP, Rhoda Grant, lodged the motion after hearing that the group and its newsletter editor, Ian Budd, had been awarded the Best Newsletter Gold Award. And they have nice web site.  You can support their campaign efforts by becoming a member for just £15 or £12 if you sign up for an annual amount via the bank.  The web site has lots of rail information and photos.  And Facebook..........
Give Blood - Wednesday 15th November At Assembly Rooms, Wick
Give Blood Wednesday 15th Novermber 2017

Phone ahead now to make your appointment

      Community Index

A Walk Round Central Thurso
A Walk Around ThursoWalk Around ThursoWalk Around ThursoWalk Around Thurso

Highland Remembers - Remembrance Parades And Services  - Times Of Many parades etc
11th and 12th November parades and services

Your Cash Your Caithness - Another Chance For Funds
Caithness Members of The Highland Council have set aside £15,000.00 from their Ward Discretionary Budgets to let the local community once again decide for themselves which projects are needed in their area. Whether you want to organise a dance for young people, a healthy living project, a crime prevention idea, a lunch club for older residents, a community art project, the only limit is your imagination. To apply for up to £1,500.00 you must submit an application before 5.00pm on Sunday 3 December 2017. If your idea fits, the community will get to vote for the best ideas at an event to be held on Saturday 27 January 2018 in Thurso. At the event you will be required to talk about your idea to the community. Those in attendance will then vote on all the applications and a decision will be made on the day.

SSE Sustainable Development Fund - Now Open for Applications
The criteria for the fund is as follows and more information is available on the fund guidelines and application form documents which are included below: Creating opportunities - increased opportunities for education and employment Empowering communities - build resilience and protect vulnerable residents Building sustainable places - stimulate meaningful community regeneration Completed applications should be sent to Marianne Townsley by 12 Noon on Wednesday 31 January 2018.
Demonstations On Saturday 28th At Dunbar Hospital, Thurso and Town and County, Wick

Dunbar Hospital       Town and County
Dunbar HospitalTown and County Hospital, Wick

Everything is set for the demonstrations organised by CHAT in support of the health care services in Caithness ahead of another review by NHS Highland.

Demonstration times are -

Dunbar Hospital, Thurso  - Gathering 10.00am for press  photos calls etc - 10.15am march to Thurso High 
10.30am - Polticians from 4 parties to give their view on what is happening to health services in Caithness.

Town and County Hospital, Wick - Gathering 2.00pm for press and photos etc - 2.15pm march to Assembly Rooms.
2.30pm Politicians from 4 parties to give their view on what is happening to health servicesin Caithness.

CHAT Facebook

Town and County Hospital - A Lovely Facility in Caithness But What Is Its Future?
Town and County Hosptial - Candlelit Vigil at 6:30pm on Thursday 26th October 2017Town and county Hospital - Candle lit Vigil 26th October 2017 at 6.30pmTown and County Hospitasl, Wick - Candle lit Vigil 6.30pm 26th October 2017

The Town and County Hospital is shortly to be part of a review of health services in Caithness by NHS Highland.  In coming weeks a list of options wil be put up for public consultation.  A family have organised a candle lit vigil to show support for the hospital and its staff in memory of a relative cared for at the hospital. The vigil will start at 6.30pm on Thursday 26th October and is in advance of the rallies at Town and County Hospital and Dunbar Hospital in Thurso on Satruday 28th October.  The Caithness community has contributed many things to the hospital over the years and much work has been done on the gardens - it is a much loved and appreciated facility for Caithness.

YOUR CASH YOUR CAITHNESS - How would you change Caithness?
Do you have an idea that will make Caithness a better place for everyone? Do you need up to £1,500.00 to put your idea into action? If your answer is YES then ‘YOUR CASH YOUR CAITHNESS' is the opportunity for you to make your project happen. Deadline for applications is Sunday 3rd December 2017.
Health and Wellbeing Day At Pulteney Centre
Health and Welbeing Day in Wick 21 October 2017
A few photos of some of the stalls and participants at the Health and well being day held in Pulteney Centre, Wick.  A few links with our photos to web sites for information if you did not manage along to pick up leaflets etc.  Most of the organisations there have web sites or phone numbers and there is a huge amount of help around if you know where to find it.

New Beginnings Care Course - FREE


Monday 23 October - Telford House, Williamson Street, Wick Planning & Delivery 10.30am - 12.30pm Branding & Marketing 1pm - 3pm
Basic Food Hygiene Course For Voluntary Groups
Free food Safety Course for Voluntary Groups
Caithness Voluntary Group. Basic Food Hygiene Course, Telford House, Wick.
Tuesday 21st November, 10.30am - 12.30pm.
This is a two hour free course suitable for voluntary groups that may organise fundraising activities such as coffee mornings, food stalls or village hall events and need to know about food hygiene and food safety. The training is delivered by a NHS Community Food and Health Practitioner.

Do You Know Anything About This Go-Cart?
Can we find this go-cart?
It is a long shot but someone is looking for this Go-cart sold 10 years ago.  Is it still aroundin Caithness?

Caithness Access Disabled Panel Questionnaire For Businesses
The above panel have been working over the last few years to build a website which would benefit people living in and visiting Caithness, in relation to visiting/using "accessible" services for people with disabilities.

Ken Butler - Died 5th October 2017 - Obituary
Born 14.05.1939 at Warrington- Died 05.10.2017 at Thurso Caithness . Physicist & Botanist ; Assistant Director at the Dounreay Nuclear Power Establishment & published botanical author. The death of physicist J. Kenneth 'Ken' Butler at the age of 79 after a three-year battle with cancer, brings to an end a direct link with the earliest days of the Dounreay Nuclear Power Establishment, just ten miles from his home at Thurso, Scotland's only North coast town.

Caithness Heart Support Group handed over equipment to Wick GP surgeries
Caithness Heart support Group hand over equipment to Wick GP practices October 2017
Caithness Heart Support Group handed over the latest equipment it has funded, to the medical practices at Wick GP surgeries.


Wick event to focus on health and wellbeing services
Health and Well being Fair in Wick
THE county's second Health and Wellbeing Market is taking place at the Pulteney Centre in Wick on Saturday, 21st October 2017. There will be 23 stalls offering information on health and wellbeing services that can be accessed in Caithness. The event is being organised by Caithness Health Improvement Forum with Caithness Voluntary Group (CVG), Pulteneytown People's Project (PPP) and the NHS, and will run from 11am to 3pm. It follows on from the first Health and Wellbeing Market which was held at the same venue in April 2016 and attended by around 170 people. The aim is to showcase the wide range of opportunities available locally to benefit general health as well as mental, spiritual, emotional and social wellbeing.     Community Index

Living Better With a Long Term Condition - Check Out The Boccia Group In Wick
Living Better With a Lon Term condition - Boccia days

Wick Swimming Pool - opening times for School Holidays
More public swimming time during school holidays as o swimming lessons.

Thurso Swimming Pool - opening times for School Holidays
Plenty time for swimming right now.

CHAT 100 Mile Helper Kits READY TO GO
CHAY 100 mile helper kits ready to go
Caithness Health Action Team (CHAT) have now put the 100 Mile Helper Kits together and wil shortly be distrubuting them to Hositals and GP practices. The 100 Mile Helper kits are good to go! First batches going to hospitals today. CHAT said "Thank you so much for all the donations that made these possible."
      CHAT new web site launched                  CHAT Facebook

Caithness Soup - Local Crowd Funding (with soup)
Caithness Soup

St Fergus Bowling Club Donates £300 to Laurandy Day Care Centre
Bill Fernie chairmanof Laurandy Day Care Centre receives £300 from Malky Mackay chairman of St Fergus Bowling Club Wick
St Fergus Bowling club in Wick recently donated £300 to the Laurandy Day Care Centre in Wick. St Fergus Bowling Club Chairman Malky Mackay handed over a cheque for £300 to Laurandy Centre chairman Bill Fernie.  Bill Fernie thanked the St. Fergus club for their generous donation and said,"I continue to be amazed at the giving by groups and individuals in Wick towards out centre that recently took over care for the Alzheimer's group that closed. We need to fund raise continually to maintain the services we provide. The staff and volunteers at Laurandy do wonderful job for the elderly in our community and I know from speaking to many people that the service is highly valued."

Parents from far north 'let down' by Raigmore Hospital - Inverness Courier
A NEW mum whose baby was born prematurely put a plea on Facebook for a spare room after she felt let down by the family hospital accommodation at Raigmore Hospital. Demi Mitchell, from Helmsdale, was given a room in the special unit so she could be close to her baby, who has been kept in the hospital’s special baby care unit after being born weighing just 2lbs and 13ozs. But she was left "heartbroken" after a strict ‘no children’ rule at the hospital’s free accommodation block forced her to be parted from her two-year-old daughter, who was left pining at home nearly 70 miles away.

Wedding Dresses Display Cash Handed Over To CHAT
Rev.John Nugent handing over Cash donation to CHAT Chairman Bill FernieRev. John Nugent the minister at St Fergus Church handed over £794 from the Wedding Dresses display by the ladies at St Fergus Church, Wick. Bill Fernie, chairman of Caithness Health Action Team (CHAT) thanked the ladies who organised the display and accepted the money on behalf of CHAT. Bill said,"The generosity of Caithness people has been truly amazing and they are rallying round the campaign to fight cuts to health services in the north." Bill spent the day at the display in St Fergus church and spoke to many of the people who attended to see the dresses and look at the many wedding photos.

Wedding Dresses Display At St Fergus Church, Wick in aid of CHAT Funds
Wedding Dresses Display at St FergustChurch in aid of Caithness Health Action Team funds
The ladies of St Fergus church rallied round to help Caithness Health Action Team (CHAT) with yet another fund raiser.  Each year they choose a cause to support either abroad or local  This year they decide to help CHAT in their efforts to stop continued reduction in local health services by NHS Highland.  Some of the ladies who visited the display were in their 80's and 90's determined to show their support and spoke about the many times they or their families had used health services locally and in particular maternity services in Caithness.
Wedding Memorabilia Display in aid of CHAT
at St Fergus Church, Wick Saturday 7th October 10.30am - 3.30pm
Call in to see the display and support CHAT.

Final Leg Of Tesco Lands End to John O'Groats Walk
Final stretch of Great Tesco Walk toJohn O'Groats
TESCO walkers had to brave wind and rain on the last, Caithness lap of their end-to-end charity walk bit got a champagne reception at John O' Groats. This was the final year of the National Charity Partnership with Diabetes UK and the British Heart Foundation.

Praise for B876 Killimster Moss road refurbishment
Killimster Moss Road Rebuilt
A stretch of the Caithness Wick to Thurso road at Killimster Moss was refurbished over a four week programme of improvement and reopened on Friday 29 September. This in-house project by The Highland Council saw Development and Infrastructure staff design the road refurbishment and Community Services staff carry out the works. The Council teams received loud praise from local Wick and East Caithness Councillor Willie Mackay.

The men who worked on the road with Councillor Mackay
Killimster Moss road opens
Caithness Civic leader Cllr Willie Mackay (centre) cuts the tape at the opening of the newly refurbished half mile Killimster Moss stretch of the B876 Wick to Thurso road. Looking on are some of the Highland council workers praised for the project which was done on time and within budget. From left Kevin Mackay Community works officer, Colin Smith, Ian Rainford, Donald Cormack and Alastair Mackenzie.

Thurso volunteers planning BIG clean up of Riverside area  - You Can Help
Pay it Forward Thurso -riverside cleanup Saturday 7th and Sunday 8th October
The Pay it Forward Thurso collective have been very busy in recent weeks cleaning up various areas of Thurso. They have worked to weed along Victoria Walk and the Esplanade area. The activity by the group has encouraged residents of Thurso to go out and clean up their own areas of the town. Two young brothers Kian and Jayden Mackay completed a litter pick around their home in Harold Drive and a weeding mission was completed by the residents of Bower Court on the pathways surrounding their homes. Keeping the momentum going and keen to make the most of the autumnal weather before winter sets in Pay it Forward Thurso in conjunction with Thurso Town Improvements Association are preparing for the BIG Riverside clean this weekend Saturday 7th and Sunday 8th October from 10am - 4pm.   You can contribute time or a small donation to help.
Taste North - North Highland's Premier Food, Drink And Craft Event
Taste North
Taste North, the north Highland's premier food, drink and craft event, in association with Venture North and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), are back for the third year running and this year return to Ackergill Tower with a packed line up and a leading name in the culinary world to head up the fantastic schedule and inspire the foodie passion in us all! Nick Nairn will be joining us as our very special guest this year at Ackergill Tower on 1st October 2017.  11.00am - 4.30pm - Drop in and get a taste of the north.

Newtonhill Talk Fundraiser For Caithness Heart Support Group
Crofthouse at Newtonhillfor Talk to support Caithness Heart Support Group
THE renovated croft house at the top of Newtonhill will be the focus for an illustrated talk by volunteers who are hosting it on behalf of Caithness Heart Support Group. The historic croft house dates back to the 18th century. Since it was opened to the public in 2015, extensive improvement and landscaping have been carried out in the surrounding area. The talk, at 2:00pm on Saturday, (30th September 2017) will be delivered by Willie Bruce and Billy Nicolson. Admission £3 will include tea, coffee and biscuits.

Noss Primary School Exhibition for Malawi Kids
Noss Primary School Malawi Exhibition fund raiser
Noss Primary school has been involved along with other schools in helping kids in Malawi and have an ongoing collection of pennies on a map of Africa. Recently the school in Wick donated the old sweat shirts from the old schools to a project sending items from lost property boxes in Highland schools to schools in Malawi where they could be put to use. The exhibition consists of postcards, photos and artwork from the kids in Malawi responding to the supply of sweatshirts from Noss School pupils. Since the story about the pennies on the map of Africa at Noss primary has run more people have turned up to donate collections of pennies to the project.    Let us all get behinds this great wee project  by Noss Primary.
A raffle will be held at the exhibition for funds to the Highland Malawi Trust

Thurso Town Improvments Newsletter and Halloween Parties for Kids and Adults in Community

50th Wedding Anniversary Wick Couple Asked Guests To Donate to CHAT
Maureen and Gordon Doull present £750 to CHAT - Nicola Sinclair and Bill Fernie
Maureen and Gordon Doull from Wick have celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary at Mackays Hotel and asked their guests to make donations to Caithness Health Action Team (CHAT) as they are so concerned at what is happening to health services in Caithness. The couple handed over a £750 to Bill Fernie, chairman of CHAT and founder member Councillor Nicola Sinclair.

Tackling poverty is everyone's business
Warm Home Discount
An initiative to address poverty and tackle the deprivation that is prevalent throughout the Highlands is launched today (Wednesday, 27 September 2017) by the 9 Community Partnerships. Highland Community Partnerships were formed at the end of 2016 and are a coming together of individuals within local communities, the third sector and public agencies to reduce inequalities and to agree key improvement opportunities that are important to local residents and businesses and thereafter to take the appropriate action.
            Caithness Business Index    

Recycling For The Future
Projects which are increasing recycling rates, reducing emissions and re-using resources are to receive a share of £8.4 million. Around £4.2 million will help 17 small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) develop new products which will re-use whisky by-products, waste plastic and household furniture, through the Circular Economy Investment Fund.
     Community Index

Emily Frased and Anne Dunnet
CAITHNESS Heart Support group recently bade a fond farewell to its patron Miss Anne Dunnett who retired from public life recently. The group was only one of several local organisations Miss Dunnett was involved in, not least as the county's Lord Lieutenant. Tribute was paid to her 'significant' contribution to the heart group during the past six years, at a social gathering at the Norseman Hotel,Wick.

NHS Highland Board’s Dirty Tricks
The Caithness Scream - Ian Scott
Today a hard hitting letter from CHAT's Vice Chair Prof. Iain Baikie has been published in the John O'Groat Journal an is now published on the CHAt Facebook page.. Joining in is well-known local artist Ian Scott has produce a new work for the campaign "Caithness Scream".  The relentless march by NHS Highland to downgrade health services in Caithness is now once again exposed for what it is.  Nothing is safe it seems - maternity, Town and county, Dunbar, beds in Caithness General and more.     Follow on CHAT Facebook.

Dunnet Beach Clean - Can You spare An Hour?
The rangers are organising another clean-up for Dunnet Beach on Saturday 30th September.  The removal  of waste from our beaches is unfortunately a never ending one but if we want to keep this one looking good go along and help between 11:00am and 2:00pm.  Gloves and bags supplied and a free hot drink.
Calling Geocachers - Check out a new event in the Highland Archaeology Festival
Geocache at Highland Archaeology Festival
As part of the 2017 Highland Archaeology Festival, a number of geocaches have been hidden throughout the Highlands. "There are so many wonderful sites in the Highlands to explore," explained Kirsty Cameron, Highland Council Archaeologist. ‘We wanted to hide caches where people can discover more about our rich heritage. We've also hidden some small objects in our caches during the festival." One of the geocache sites is at Dunbeath- see the web site for all of the sites in Highland at the Archaeology Festival

Buzzfeed one of the biggest online news sites highlights Caithness Maternity Issues

CHAT Facebook for the latest comments etc

Noss Primary School Wick - Raising Funds For Malawi
Noss Primary School - Money for Malawi
As well as our sponsored ‘Water Walk' next Wednesday and our Malawi display which you can visit on the Open Afternoon and parents' evenings, we are collecting loose change to try to cover a map of Africa we have set up in the library area. If you have any 5p, 2ps or 1ps lying around, please send them in with your child so they can put them on the map. It would be lovely to get our ‘Change for Change' map completely covered.

Caithness JAM - Charity Music Event For Sarcoidosis
Charity music event at Mill Theatre

Help Save the Town and County by Professor Baikie
Professor Baikie, vice-chairman of CHAT has hit the ground running is his new role with front page headlines in the John O'Groat Journal today and a letter on the CHAT Facebook page calling the whole community from whatever perspective to join the fight to save the Town and County from the despicable moves of NHS Highland trying to hide behind a consultation exercise and bed review.  Read the letter  - it says what many people feel and gives voice to the need to fight this in every way possible.  What next, after the maternity disgrace and moves on the Dunbar hospital in Thurso  as well as the Town and Coucnty in Wick,.  Another Vice-chairman Ron Gunn was appointed at the CHAT AGM a couple of weeks agao and a new branch of CHAT to specifically deal with Thurso will be formed at our next full meeting in Thurso to allow full participation without having to travel to Wick in coming weeks and months. CHAT is increasing its political activity as the only way forward as we have had no sign from NHS Highland other than their moves to close down the facilties in Caithness.  Professor Baikie has asked for as many as possible to write to the First Minister to show we are united - it.  Contact details are on the CHAT Facebook page along with the letter.......Bill Fernie.
Day of action at Caithness bird haven
Caithness Countryside Volunteers at St John's Pool Birds place Sepember 2017
After an extremely busy breeding season, most of the nesting birds have now left St Johns Pool, near Dunnet which gave the Caithness Countryside Volunteers the ideal opportunity to get into action before the winter migrants begin to arrive. The volunteers undertook a range of activities such as wood preserving the viewing hides and fence posts. Weeding was carried out on one of the islands and new shutters fitted to one of the hides.

Attractions of Wick On the John O'Groat Trail - Can You Help?
As some of you might know the John O Groat trail is hoping to be officially opened next year. The trail will pass through Wick and it was thought that this would be an opportunity to showcase the attractions of Wick for the visiting walkers, those driving the NC500 and others visiting the area.

We are recruiting new Trustees At HomeStart Caithness
HomeStart Caithness Recruiting more trustees
Can you spare a couple of hours a month to help change lives? 
You may bring a particular expertise to the board, such as professional skills in finance, IT, business, personnel management or marketing and PR, but equally as important are listening and communication skills, commitment and common sense. Your commitment is to attend Board meetings. These are held every eight weeks or so and do not usually last more than an hour. All relevant papers are sent out at least one week in advance.

All The Stations - Inverness to Wick
Geoff Marshall and Vikkie Pipe have completed their journey in this last little video.
Comments From The CHAT Postcard Campaign
CHAT Postcard Campaign sample comments
The CHAT postcard campaign has now moved on with the first batch of 1000 postcards sent ot the First Minister.  Here are some sample comments frmo the postcards.  More to follow in coming days.  You can still leave comments about the situation on health issues in Caithness on the CHAT Facebook page whether on maternity or the soon to be launched NHS consultation/bed review which may dramatically affect the three Caithness hospitals with threat of huge reductions at Town and County in Wick and Dunbar hospital Thurso.

Save The Town and County Hospital in Caithness - Sign The Petition

CHAT sends first batch of 1,000 protest postcards to First Minister
CHAT postcards sent to First Minister
Caithness Health Action Team (CHAT) has gathered 2,410 postcards from members of the public protesting the centralisation of health services under NHS Highland. The postcards carry the slogan ‘100 miles too far' in reference to the 100 mile journey patients frequently have to travel to receive basic care. In 2016 14,786 patients from Caithness and Sutherland travelled for appointments at Raigmore Hospital in Inverness, many of which last only 5 minutes and could be conducted on the phone. Meanwhile, around 90% of maternity patients now give birth in Inverness, and many mothers are making the journey down the A9 without an ambulance, whilst in labour.

Highland Council £160million Budget Gap Next 5 Years

HIE Helps Businesses Get Cyber Strong
Cyber Strong
Highlands and Islands Enterprise is offering its clients across the region support to protect themselves from cyber attacks, by launching the Cyber Strong business project. Co-inciding with Digital Leaders Cyber Resilience Week (11-15 September 2017), the agency is launching a programme to help local businesses and social enterprises achieve national Cyber Essentials accreditation.

Companies Set To LINC With Dounreay
Dounreay PFR
Companies are being invited to LINC together and support Scotland's largest decommissioning project thanks to an innovative new scheme designed to increase the number of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) delivering clean-up work at Dounreay. Up to five companies will be invited to help understand and develop the best proposal for size-reducing all of the machinery and components that will need to be removed from Dounreay's Prototype Fast Reactor (PFR) - the largest to be built at the Caithness site. It is the first of several opportunities expected to be advertised as part of an initiative encouraging SMEs to LINC - liaise, innovate, network and collaborate - with Dounreay.

Highland Council driving quality improvement in education

Council Programme agreed - Local Voices, Highland Choices

Highland Council Restructure Management To Save A Further £235,000

Landlord Registration Enforcement

The John O' Groats Mill - Open Weekend - 9th and 10th September
John O'Groats MillJohn O'Groats Mill
Everyone in our community is aware of the mill at Groats - we've all driven past it, some of us daily. It's very much a local landmark. You may even know a little of its history: it was grinding corn as recently as 2001 and its machinery is still in working order to this day. Not many of us, however, have had the opportunity to see through the buildings. Well, now’s your chance. By kind permission of the Houston family, the Mill will be open on Sat. 9th and Sun. 10th September from 11am till 5pm. All are welcome ................We need your opinion. Without community interest, this project will be nothing more than a pipedream.
Wick Players Christmas Panto Advance Notice

£9 Million Berriedale Braes Road Contract Out To Market
Berriedale Braes Improvement contract out shortly
The notice, which outlines construction costs of approximately £9 million, invites prospective bidders to formally apply to participate in the procurement to construct major improvements to this important route in the north of Scotland. The project will see improvements to the road alignment and the existing tight hairpin bend. Once complete the scheme will improve road safety and journey times by removing the need for vehicles to slow down or stop to negotiate the bend.

Caithness Professor Appointed As Vice Principal Of UHI
Professor Stuart Gibb appointed vice-chancellor UHI
Professor Stuart Gibb, director of the Environmental Research Institute at North Highland College UHI, has been appointed as vice-principal (international and external engagement). He is leading on the development and implementation of the university's international strategy, working to improve brand identity and increase the recruitment of international students.........West Highland College UHI principal, Lydia Rohmer, has taken up the role of vice-principal (tertiary) .......Iain Macmillan, principal of Lews Castle College UHI, has been appointed as vice-principal (strategic harmonisation and organisational efficiency)

Mapping the Ecosystem Services of Noss Head and East Caithness Cliffs - Workshop
A coupleof places at the workshop remain.  Takes place on Thursday 7th September.

Chairman of the Royal British Legion Scotland Wick Branch Captain Richard Otley thanks Laurieton
A letter published today in the Camden Courier in Australia. Laurieton United Services Club is in New south Wales.

Crab fishermen off Orkney taken to safety in Scrabster  - BBC

Wick Riverside Volunteers Making a Huge Difference - Want to Help?
Wick Riverside Volunteers - Another Job Done
As communities in Highland and indeed Scotland get left to do more in their areas one group is showing the way. Wick Riverside Volunteers have already changed the look of several areas around the riverside and you can see the before and after photos on their Facebook page.  Dorren Gow a volunteer with the group sent some photos from last weekend and said,"We were given lots of tar planings from Highland Council roads dept for improving the paths, and GMR Hendersons supplied equipment and manpower last weekend. "We will be doing a post on Facebook asking for helpers this weekend now. All help much appreciated, and to bring along a wheelbarrow, spade and gloves if possible."   Share their facebook pages. Alexander 'Sandy' Manson born 1st August 1924 died 22nd August 2017
Alexander 'Sandy' Manson died 22nd August 2017
Alexander 'Sandy' Manson, John O'Groats postmaster and Arctic Convoys veteran. Born 01/08.1924, died 22.08.2017, both at John O'Groats, Caithness. The sudden death of retired postmaster Alexander 'Sandy' Manson at the age of 93 in his PO House home in the well-known small community at the 'top' of Scotland, has robbed the country of one of a dwindling group of servicemen who have been more honoured by a key ally in the long fight against the evils of Nazism than by our own British Government. For Sandy Manson served on board an RN destroyer that provided key support in 1943 and 1944 to seamen of the British Merchant Navy supplying ... against all the odds ... vital war-equipment to aid the Soviet Union in its ultimately successful, but bloody, land and air battles against the Wehrmacht armies. Those conflicts were to decisively turn the tide of WW II against the murderous, fascist clique that ruled Germany from 1933 till the Soviet 'Red Army' overran Berlin in the spring of 1945.

FANCY YOURSELF AS A BIT OF A SLEUTH? - Ashley Cowie Will Reveal New Discoveries
New Archaeology discovery
Fancy yourself as a bit of a sleuth? Come and apply your skills at a unique historic investigaton and hear all about Ashley's latest Neolithic discovery in Caithness.

Booking HERE

Woodturning Demo
Wood Turning Demo
North Highland Woodturners annual demonstration with professional turners Alec Mutch & Mark Sutton.

Caithness man raising awareness of life after brain injury backing ID Card
Callum McLeanAn ex-fisherman whose life changed following a tumour is backing a new charity identification card aimed at helping brain injury survivors explain their condition. Callum Maclean, was a commercial fisherman for more than 20 years and a qualified welding inspector before a brain tumour changed his life in 2011. The tumour left him with a number of problems such as impaired balance, affected temperament and limited mobility. These symptoms have brought many challenges, including dealing with the often inappropriate ways people react to his disabilities.  It’s for this reason that he is supporting a new identification card being launched by Headway – the brain injury association. The Headway Brain Injury Identity Card is designed to help brain injury survivors explain their condition.
Royal British Legion Scotland Wick Canisbay & Latheron Branch
Alex Paterson paints new Legion sign
Royal British legion Scotland Wick Canisbay and Latheron Branch, over the last year have had a very busy, rewarding and successful time......................................In a bid to re - engage with valued members and to ensure effective communication Chairman Capt Richard Otley has recently personally written to all members present and lapsed. Going forward the branch has introduced a monthly draw for all members and hopes to further build on the success of the recent annual RBLS Mey Highland and Cultural Games, making next year's event even bigger and better.
Marymas Fayre 2017
Marymas Fayre 2017Marymas Fayre 2017

Reay and District Gardening Club 40th Horticultural Show 2017
Reay and District Gardening Club 40th Horticultural Show 2017Reay and Disrtict Gardening Club 40th Horticultural show 2017Reay and district Gardening Club 40th Horticultural Show 2017

Do You Want An Experience? - Try A Bat Night At Castle Of Mey
Bats at Castle of Mey
Try something different in September. Check out the bats at Castle of Mey. The rangers will take you out and show you around the places where bats hang out at the castle.

Wizard of Oz By Thurso Players
Wizard of Oz
Thurso Players are perfoming the Wizard of Oz for 4 nights from Wednesday 6th September at Thurso High School.  Tickets are on sale from McBeaths Jewellers in Thurso or you can phone to book them.  A rare chance to see live performance of this well loved musical and a great family night out.

NOSCA Nippers - Updated Information
NOSCA Nippers information - at Wick Family Centre

Disruption to Highland Council School Transport - Update
Highland Council is reassuring all pupils, parents and carers this morning (23 August) that all school transport routes have been covered in Caithness and East Ross following the loss of the contractor Andrew's (Shetland) Ltd. who ceased trading last night (22 August). Bill Alexander, Highland Council's Director of Care and Learning said: "This is wonderful work by our Transport colleagues and partners who swiftly managed to get replacement services up and running for this morning." The Council warns however, that there may still be some gaps on public service routes. Link to new timetable on the page inside.
Disruption to Highland Council School Transport
Parents and carers of pupils using Andrew's (Shetland) Ltd coaches for Thurso, Wick, Dornoch, Golspie and Invergordon High Schools and some of their associated Primaries are warned for possible disruption to transport arrangements from tomorrow morning Wednesday 23 August 2017. Highland Council has been notified that its school transport contractor Andrew's (Shetland) Ltd has ceased trading as of this evening (Tuesday 22 August 2017).
Updates will be posted on the council’s school closure website tomorrow morning (Wednesday 23 August) from 7am onwards.

Important Transport Changes - Killimster Moss - Reiss To Casteltown
B876 Temporary Closure
As recently reported, the B876 between Castletown and Reiss will be closed for three weeks from 28 August 2017 to enable urgent repair works to be carried out. This will result in changes to the X99 and 81 services, along with the 276 / 277 / 281 services to Dounreay)

Last Postbus Reaches The End Of The Road - The Scotsman
The final trip of a post bus in Scotland took place on Saturday 19 August 2017 on the route between Lairg and Tongue in Sutherland.

All The Stations Pair Arrive At Wick After 104 Days
"All The Stations" pair Geoff Marshall and Vikki Pipe -19 August 2017
Bill Fernie went to meet Geoff Marshall and Vickie Pipe on Saturday 19th August 2017 as they arrived at the final station - Wick after 104 days in their quest to visit all of the railway stations in Britain.  Bill gave them a small Caithness flag to celebrate their final station - number 2563 - Wow.  They have videos all along their route and kept up an endless stream of photos and contacts on social media. The bouncy enthusiastic pair have carried their selfie cameras all the time and constantly made short film clips to be edited into very professionally edited films for their Youtube Channel - All The Stations.  A great record of what the stations and indeed the railways are like  in 2017 and well worth dippiing in to see their little films.  They are still editng the final ones so keep watching. 
Photos at Wick
Vickie Pipe - Harry Potter Locations in London
  Geoff Marshall - Secrets of The Underground
Jame Stone interviewed for light hearted politics programme
Meet the MPs is an ambitious online series which will introduce the colourful new personalities who have recently joined Westminster's green benches following June's General Election. Each episode features a quick-fire Q&A with an MP from the 2017 intake. Why is this different? In short, it is the questions that they weren't expecting (we weren't always expecting the answers that came back either). The episodes are fun and informal while also revealing more about the new voices in the Commons.
Telephone Box At Reay - Photos Taken Before It Finally Disappears
Telephone at Reay is no moreTelephone at Reay has gone
The phone at Reay telephonebox has gone and at some point the actual box may be removed so a few photos for future reference to add to those taken 15 years ago in 2002.  More telephones  are going and BT has proposed now to take out half the remaining boxes.

Our Story - Dounreay - BBC Radio Scotland 1.30pm Today
Or catch it later on iplayer

Dounreay's Oldest Reactor To Be Demolished
DMTR to be demolished
It is 60 years this weekend since the first criticality was achieved in Scotland using a test rig at Dounreay. Now the decommissioning team responsible for the site is marking that milestone by taking a major step towards demolishing the oldest reactor that remains at the former fast reactor research centre. Companies are being invited to bid for a contract to demolish the iconic Dounreay Materials Test Reactor (DMTR) which became Scotland's first operational reactor in 1958. DMTR, which was built with steelwork weighing in at almost 600 tonnes and stands on foundations more than 25 metres in diameter, tested the effects of irradiation on metals and was the only reactor on the site to use heavy water instead of liquid metal as a coolant.

Scotland's Baby Box available nationwide
Baby Boxes Launched
All babies in Scotland due from today 15 August 2017 will be gifted a box full of essential items aimed at tackling inequality and promoting health. The boxes are a strong signal of the Scottish Government's determination that every child, regardless of their circumstances should get the best start in life. Each Baby Box contains a large number of items which are not only practical but designed to help tackle inequality and improve health. The box itself also doubles up as a safe sleep space, awarded British Safety standard accreditation as a crib for domestic use.
Ravenskald Writers Workshop - Book Your Place Now
GEORGE GUNN 12th September 2017 - 17th April 2018 Tuesday Evenings 6.00 pm - 8.00 pm
Join poet and playwright George Gunn on your personal creative journey from the poem, through the short story to the formal destination of the stage play. In these 16 workshops we will look at how poetry generates story. From that beginning you will explore the requirements of short narrative fiction. From the short story, you will move on to the demands of public storytelling which is the business of the theatre. Ravenskald is a new venture. The group will develop creativity through interaction, constructive criticism and mutual support. All you need is the desire to dream, to create, to write.

Sandside - New Photos
Sandside, Caithness - August 2017Sandside, Caithness - August 2017
Hard to beleive but it is almost 17 years since we took the last set of photos of Sandside in November 2000

Wick Swimming Pool Timetable Starts Today
School summer holidays end this week and the new timetable has started so check your swimming times before you head over to the pool.  Get a High Life Card - -Save 10% at Castle & Gardens of Mey with High Life Highland

Thurso Swimming Pool Timetable Starts Today
Check the times for swimming before you go.     Get a High Life Card- Regular user make great savings

New Probationer Teachers For All Parts Of Highland
New probationer teachers for Highland August 2017
One hundred and forty two probationer teachers who are on the Teacher Induction Scheme and a few probationer teachers on the Flexible Route were recently welcomed to the Highlands.  Of the 142 probationers on the Teacher Induction Scheme, 58 have been allocated to secondary schools and 84 to primary schools in the Highlands.

Bats At Thrumster Woodland - Evening Walk
Bat night at Thrumster Woods

Gold Panning With The Rangers - You Never Know What You Will Find
Gold Panning At Helmsdale
The gravels and sediments of the Kildonan Burn are salted with small concentrations of gold in the form of tiny granular flecks, and the very occasional little nuggets sometimes combined with quartz. The Helmsdale river valley offers a sheltered and pleasant route to the banks of the Kildonan Burn, signposted as Baile-An-0r, the Gaelic translation of Town of gold.

Reay - A New Photo Set Of The Village Taken On Saturday
Reay Village Hall - 12 August 2017The Shop at ReayChurch at Reay

See photos of Reay from 15 to 17 years ago HERE

A few Old Reay School class photos HERE
Highland Council Assurance On Concerns About Wick Campus
Assurances on Wick Campus by Highland councilHighland Council has written to the Wick Stakeholder Group, Wick High School Parent Council and Newton Park Primary School Parent Council to provide a statement of assurance regarding the new Wick Campus facility.  The Campus is a fantastic facility and a tremendous asset for the Community. We believe that all stakeholders can now look forward confidently and with pride in one of the best public facilities in the Highlands. The Council looks forward to welcoming pupils back for the start of the new school year.


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