Caithness Energy Advice Free Drop In Event At Lybster Outdoor Bowling Club
Are holding a Free drop in event for householders on Thursday 31st January - 10am - 4pm
Free - Energy Saving Lightbulbs - Free - Energy Efficiency Advice
Free - Powerdown Plugs for energy thirsty PC's - Free Household Visits

Fund Raiser For RNLI - Concert and Ceilidh - Assembly Rooms, Wick Saturday 2nd February
The RNLI is organising a major national fundraising campaign around 25th January 2008 on the theme of SOS. Local groups and individuals are being encouraged to join in and raise funds while having fun at the same time. In Wick the local fundraising branch of the RNLI has joined forces with Wick RBLS Pipe Band to host a "Sounds O' Scotland concert in the Assembly Rooms on Saturday 2nd February 2008". All profits from the concert will be shared between the RNLI and the pipe band. An impressive line up of artists have agreed to give their services free of charge at the concert which starts at 7.30pm. They include dancers from the Elise Lyall School of Dance, Bryan Coghill, Raymond Bremner (Mod Gold Medallist), Emptyhouse (Folk Group), Philip Todd (Mod Gold Medallist), Wick North Primary School 6/7 Choir, Ceol Bho Phuath (Gaelic Folk Group) and of course Wick RBLS Pipe Band. There will also be a bottle stall and raffle, Lifeboat and Pipe Band souvenirs will be on sale. Tickets priced at £5 each and pre-numbered will be on sale from Polteney News in Dempster Street or at the door on the night. After the concert there will be a licensed ceilidh/dance in the Assembly Rooms with music from the band Whisky. Tickets costing £5 each will be available as above.

Thurso Mothers and Toddlers Group Donate £100 To Labrescue
On Wednesday 23rd January 2008 Thurso Mothers and Toddlers presented a cheque of £100 to Carolyne Poulton and Heidi Kubon of Labrescue. The toddlers had a successful year fundraising and the committee Laura Paul, Claire Hossack and Heidi Kubon wanted to donate the money to a local good cause. Harry one of Carolyne's rescue dogs was there to meet all the boys and girls.


Mod 2010 Commitee Gets Up And Running
The Local Organising Committee of the Royal National Mod took the first steps on the 3-year preparation road to receive Gaeldom's biggest festival to the county of Caithness in 2010 - The Royal National Mod.

Police Warning On Itinerant Traders
Northern Constabulary and Trading Standards Departments in the Highlands and Islands are reminding members of the public to be on their guard against unlicensed itinerant traders known to be operating in the Highlands. They are aware of itinerant traders selling goods door to door and are advising householders to be particularly cautious when offered goods or services at bargain prices. Householders should ask themselves if the trader will still be around if they need to complain about the quality of the goods or wish to return them. NOTE always advises folk not to buy from direct contact sales at the door, by email or by phone. Always say NO if you did not contact them first no matter how good it sounds.

Watching TV Programmes Again Online    BBC - ITV - Channel 4 - BBC Comedy Clips
In the past few months there has been a huge change in the possibilities for watching TV programmes online in the UK.   Many TV channels have now added the possibility of watching programmes.  In case anyone has not caught up with this revolution here are the main links that can also be found at the bottom of the left column on this page. You will probably need the latest version of your browser and media players etc installed but instructions are available at the various sites. You will need to download and install some free software the first time.  The different channels offer different lengths of time that a programme will be available.  So if you forgot to set the video recorder for your favourite soap etc - no more problems.  Not all programmes are available as yet and films may never be due to licensing arrangements.  The range is already quite large and growing.

Patients and carers asked for views on cancer support and information
People who have had a diagnosis of cancer in the past three years are being invited to take part in research to improve support and information services in the Highlands. Macmillan Cancer Support is working together with NHS Highland and other organisations on a consultation exercise to find out what patients and carers thought worked well and what could be improved. The research is underway and people can take part by phone or by meeting face to face between now and the end of February.

Do Not Give Your Bank Account Details To People Who Phone
Northern Constabulary would like to remind people in Caithness and Sutherland not give their bank account details to people who telephone them asking for this information. Banks and other organisations will not ask for this information over the telephone. If a call is received from someone purporting to be from a bank, and they ask for any account number, code or password, it is likely to be an attempt to obtain details for criminal purposes. If you receive a telephone call of this nature, do not give out any bank/personal information. It is known that people in the local area have been targeted with such calls in recent days.

Police Cases - Can You Help?
Theft From House - Holborn Avenue, Thurso
Car Vandalised- Mackay Street, Castletown
Door Damaged At Battery Road, Wick

Flooding all Clear For Caithness From SEPA Floodwatch
Caithness got an all clear from flooding dangers this morning but many other parts of Scotland are still in the danger zone from heavy rainfall still underway today and Sunday.  SEPA are looking into setting up early warnings to anyone potentially affected by the dangers of flooding.  You can find out more on the Floodwatch web site linked above.

Dounreay Heritage To Be Preserved
He might not think so today, but future generations could regard James Gunn as the most important person ever to work at Dounreay. For the former chemist and project manager has taken up a new part-time role as the site's first heritage officer. His role is to preserve aspects of the site that will give future generations a glimpse of life at Dounreay when the site itself has long gone. Later this month, James will commission consultants to draw up the site's first heritage strategy. An important and headline-grabbing part of the strategy will be about whether to scrap the contaminated DFR sphere as part of the site clean-up and demolition. But James says there is a lot more to the site's heritage than just a giant steel ball.

Interactive Burns
For anyone who cannot get to a Burns night this year.
Robert Burns Links  If anyone is adding A burns night in Caithness to YouTube this year let us know the link.

New Era for Scottish Housing - Help For First Time Buyers
A major expansion of a scheme to help more first time buyers get into the housing market has been announced. The shared equity scheme is part of LIFT - Low-cost Initiative for First Time Buyers - a new Government package to help people who aspire to own their home. Communities Minister Stewart Maxwell said 2008 marked the beginning of a new era for housing in Scotland in which councils, house builders, and housing associations have a vital role in delivering change. Speaking at the Building Homes For Scotland event in Edinburgh, Mr Maxwell outlined the Scottish Government's vision of a housing system that delivers good quality, energy efficient, affordable housing across all tenures.  See Video about the Scheme

Crimson Tide Play Skinandi's
Well know band Crimson Tide are back at Skinandi's on 2 February. 
The supporting bands are;
Anavris (Glasgow based original rock band)
No Exit Wound (Young Caithness rockers)                             Crimson Tide Web Site

 Listen To Some Crimson TIDE Tracks On My Space Web Site
New Album In the Making - Coming Later in 2008

ASDA Get Thumbs Down For Pennyland Farm Site In Thurso
The Highland Council has this week received a note of the Scottish Ministers' decisions on two significant planning applications for retail outlets in Thurso. ASDA was turned down for the Pennyland Farm site.  Miller Developments have been granted outline planning permissions for the former mart site at Ormlie Road.

First ScotRail 'January Sale' - Travel anywhere in Scotland for £15 return If aged 55 or over
Wow what a great deal.  Now all you folk aged 55 or over can get on the train and it will not cost a fortune.  This offer runs till 31 March 2008.  £15 for a return train trip to anywhere in Scotland from anywhere in Scotland.  Think about it you can come to Caithness for the Caithness Country Music Festival 21st, 22nd, 23rd March held in Halkirk or just come to take look around - why not do both.

More Pets In Caithness
Misty From Halkirk           Scooter From Wick

Pets Corner

Caithness Kids Do Well As Calendar Boys and Girls
Twelve Highland pupils have won top prizes in an art competition to design Lyreco Office Supplies 2008 calendar. Caithness pupils did exceptionally well with three winners chosen from over 1200 entries. Each winning pupil was presented with an i-pod prize at The Highland Council’s Education, Culture and Sport Committee. Their designs appear in one month of the calendar which is currently being distributed to all schools and council offices. The competition was sponsored by Bic.  Winners also won cash prizes for stationery for their schools.


NORTHERN Constabulary yesterday (21st January 08) hosted Scotland’s first ever multi-agency training day for all those organisations responsible for investigating and combating wildlife crime. Around 40 delegates attended at the Force Headquarters in Inverness to share their expertise and knowledge in relation to the illegal use of pesticides against wildlife in Northern Scotland.

Janetstown School Reunion
Janetstown school closed in the summer of 1970.
On Saturday the 3rd of May 2008 we hope to have a reunion of former pupils. Anyone wishing to attend could they please contact Dorothy Macivor on 01847 896221 or Wilma Mackay on 01847 831702 or email
Send any Janetstown School Photos to for a photo gallery.

Caithness Field Club Bulletin 2007
Here are the first few articles from the 2007 Edition of the Caithness Field Club annual Bulletin
Some Highlights of Natural History in 2006 (by Mary Legg, Donald Omand and Ken Butler)
Field Club Activities in 2006 (by Marion Owen)

Raising the Wreck of SS Great Britain (by George Watson and Geoff Leet)
One of Victorian Wick's heroes is "James Bremner the Wreckraiser" and the obelisk on the South Head credits him with the salvaging of 236 wrecked ships. He was also a ship builder and constructor of harbours. He developed various stone-laying barges and also the harbour wall technique of placing slate slabs vertically like books in a bookcase to allow the wave force to dissipate, still a feature of harbours like Keiss, Castlehill, and Sandside.

GPS for FieldClubbers (by Ken Butler)
Global Positioning Systems (GPS) have been available to the public for around ten years now and there is a good build up of capability. So it is a good time to comment on the usefulness of GPS in the context of Field Club members and activities. The one basic thing that a GPS unit does is to calculate where on the world it is. It can place itself generally within a few feet. Typically, in Caithness one can mark a place then go away and be guided back to the spot within a couple of hours to an accuracy of 1 metre. Coming back a year or so later with a different make and model of GPS is often accurate to within about 6 metres.

A Walk at Strathy and Baligill (by Ken Butler)
This is a description of a walk taken by the Field Club on the 18th June 2006. It is an early summer walk of 4 ½ miles over moderately rough country with some fences to cross. It took us 3 ½ hours of gentle walking and it is mainly focussed on scenery, wild plants and geology. There is a GPS support file for those who have such a device, to help navigate the route. It is a circular walk, returning to the starting point. Ordnance Survey map references are given and points in square brackets such as [01] refer to the points on the map.

Easier Contacts For Council Services and Politicians On The Front Page
We have added new links to the left hand column of this page for Council Services and Political contacts for Community Councils, Local Councillors, MSP's and MP.  Ward Forum contacts and managers are now also just a click away from this page.  We hope that this will make them easier to find quickly.

The Luckiest Hill Walker This Year - Saved in 15 Minutes By RAF Kinloss Mountain Rescue
About 1410 hours on Saturday 19th January 2008, Northern Constabulary received a report from members of the RAF Kinloss Mountain Rescue Team, who were training near to Sgorr Ruadh, Torridon, Wester Ross, that they had come across a male hill walker, who had apparently fallen some 15 minutes prior to being discovered by them. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency helicopter, Mike Uniform, stationed at Stornoway attended the scene and the casualty, a 34 year old male from the Glasgow area was winched aboard and flown to Raigmore Hospital, Inverness. He is currently detained suffering from head injuries, which are not life threatening. No further details of the casualty are being released.

Can Anyone Help Track Down The  Missing Swimming Trophies?
Caithness District Council Swimming Gala was held annually in November and involved all the local Primary schools, as well as Boys & Girls organisations such as Scouts, Brownies, etc. It was last held in the mid-1990s.

NORTHERN Constabulary have been working with the Construction Skills (formerly known as Construction Industry Training Board or CITB), Inverness College, Institute of Advanced Motorists and Highlands and Islands Fire & Rescue Service to educate young apprentices on road safety and responsible driving. The informative road safety sessions took place over the 4th and 5th of December 2007 and saw a total of 350 apprentices aged between 17 and 21 from over the Highlands and Islands in attendance at the Longman Campus of the Inverness College.
Younger Drivers May Not Become Older Drivers Because They Die Young
In 2006, 314 youngsters were killed on Scotland's roads.
Young drivers hold 10 per cent of licences but have 20 per cent of collisions.
If you are a young driver think hard before you go too fast - its harder than you think and you only need to get it wrong once to be killed or seriously hurt or injure your passengers or seriously hurt pedestrians.

Thurso Youth Club Open Night
Thurso Youth Club are holding an 'Open Night' at 7.30 pm on Monday 21st January in their club premises at Old Mill, Millbank Road, Thurso. The club has carried out a modernization programme over the past year and parents, ex-club members and other interested parties are welcome to go along to see the facilities being provided for young people. Youth Club Committee members and staff will be available to answer questions and refreshments will be provided. For further information email 

Homeowners face 15% rise in cost of energy as British Gas bills soar - Times
Fight Back Now And Contact the Caithness Energy Advice Team - They Are Ready To Help
FREE Independent Energy Advice Available In Caithness - Get It Now
f you are concerned about the rising energy prices, you may be interested in contacting the Caithness Energy Advice Team. The Energy Advice Team's aim is to help people keep warm and pay less for their energy. To accomplish this, the project team assesses the current level of energy efficiency, raises awareness of choices available to take charge of household energy bills, and partners with existing organisations for a coordinated, long range approach to reducing fuel costs and improving energy efficiency. The Energy Advice team can guide householders to energy savings by identifying issues such as poor insulation, problem door/window seals, wasteful use of electricity and incorrect use of heating systems..............

Caithness Petroleum & Scottish Water Calling Local Contractors
Are you a local contractor in the north of Scotland?
The North Scotland Industries Group is pleased to invite you to an important event featuring presentations from 2 companies with major and forthcoming business interests in the North of Scotland, and who are keen to meet with local contractors / service providers.

Caithness Farms Amongst Top Prices Latest Sale At Dingwall
Demand was strong for Caithness sheep at a sale in Dingwall last Wednesday with Caithness Farmers beginning to see better prices after many months of decline.

Latest Caithness Police Notices
Police Warning Not To Give Bank Details Over The Phone

Northern Constabulary would like to remind people in Caithness and Sutherland not give their bank account details to people who telephone them asking for this information. Banks and other organisations will not ask for this information over the telephone. If a call is received from someone purporting to be from a bank, and they ask for any account number, code or password, it is likely to be an attempt to obtain details for criminal purposes. If you receive a telephone call of this nature, do not give out any bank/personal information. It is known that people in the local area have been targeted with such calls in recent days.
Window Broken At Barrogil Street, Wick
Property in Battery Road Wick Damaged
Tyre Damage - Claredon Place, Thurso
Door Smashed At Willowbank, Wick 

Councillor Bill Fernie Cut The first Turf For A New School At Acharacle
Wick councillor Bill Fernie who chairs the Highland Council's Education, Culture and Sport committee cut the first turf with some of the Acharacle pupils on Monday. Work began on a landmark project - the Highland’s first fully sustainable school. The new Acharacle Primary School, Ardnamurchan, will be a timber building with exceptional levels of insulation, air tightness and a minimal need for heating. The contract has been awarded in two parts.  The structural frame will be manufactured and erected by Sohm Holzbautechnik GmbH of Austria while all the infrastructure works and mechanical and electrical installations are being undertaken by MacGregor Construction. The total cost of the project is £5.8 million and the school is due to open at the end of this year. Education in Highland is the biggest council service with 183 primary schools, 29 secondary schools, 156 nursery units; six special schools, 31,425 pupils...

FRI 25 JAN 8.00PM - SAT 26 JAN 2.30PM & 8.00PM
The winner of The Highland QUEST for a New Musical, Sundowe, is visiting Wick for a series of performances as part a Highland wide tour in January and February 2008. Filmed for the major BBC2 TV series MacMusical, The Highland QUEST has been a two year, international search to create a contemporary musical for a modern Scottish audience. The project is a partnership between Eden Court, The Scottish Government, Sir Cameron Mackintosh's The Mackintosh Foundation and Highland 2007. Sundowe is sponsored by MacLeod & MacCallum, the largest legal practice in the North of Scotland. Over 130 new musicals from across the world entered into the competition and following a dramatic showcase final in July 2006 Sundowe was declared the winner.

International Playwrighting Symposium Coming To Wick - Autumn 2008
Wick in Caithness sits at the heart of an ancient trade route which links Iceland with the oldest parliament in the world, Sweden with its modern culture of design and excellence, Norway where Stavanger2008 is the European Capital of Culture and the Faroe Islands where the chain dance which brings the entire community together and was instrumental in preserving the Faroese language. Grey Coast will draw on all these influences and the Nordic commitment to social justice to explore new dramatic forms informed by our shared cultural heritage. Norse, Gaelic and Scots traditions can and should inform the storytelling of our own North theatre. Grey Coast is in the unique position of being able to bring theatre makers from all of these countries together here in Caithness to discover new shapes from old roots. The first Nordic International Playwrighting Symposium will take place in late October 2008 bringing together writers, academics and theatre makers to debate new forms of dramatic discourse and begin a dialogue which will shape theatre practice nationally and internationally. Forum Members Photography Section Posting Some Great Photos
Some great photos have been posted in the Photography section in our forum in the past couple of weeks.  Click through to browse a few.  Thanks to all our photographers for sharing them as they are amongst the best ads for the county we have seen recently.

Highland Council Gives Approval For ASDA At Slackbuie, Inverness
Members of The Highland Council's Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch & Strathspey Planning Applications and Review Committee today (15th January 2008) were minded to grant outline planning application by Elphinstone Land Ltd / ASDA Stores for the development of a superstore, petrol filling station, 5 small retail units and associated works on land at Slackbuie Farm, Inverness.

Kessock Bridge Fireworks

Caithness brand’s last touch of glass - Perthshire IC
Caithness Glass closes its doors at Perth today.
But it is not the end of the road for collectable glassware brand name, in February around 10 staff are set to begin production of Caithness Glass paperweights at Crieff’s Visitor Centre.  A collection of Caithness Glass is on show at Wick Heritage Centre when open.

Caithness Arts - January February Newsletter
The latest newsletter from Caithness Arts is now out with range of items on the local scene.  New Directors to the group with profiles.  they are always on the lookout for items for the newsletter so if you have anything interesting you would like to contribute get in touch with Linda Hutton (contact details are in the Newsletter)   Caithness Arts latest Whats On is also out now


Sunday Papers
Nuclear waste stores planned for Scotland - Sunday Herald
The SNP government is considering building long-term storage facilities at or near to existing nuclear sites. This means that Hunterston in North Ayrshire, Torness in East Lothian and Dounreay in Caithness could all end up with waste stores, along with possibly Chapelcross in Dumfries and Galloway, Rosyth in Fife and Faslane in Dunbartonshire.
Scotland can become a leader in renewable energy while England goes atomic - Sunday Herald
Saturday Papers

Spectacular Fireworks and Entertainment To Light Up Kessock Bridge
Highland 2007 the year long festival is brought to an end with the biggest fireworks display ever in the Highlands on Saturday evening.  Big crowds are expected to descend on the Highland capital for weekend of shopping at the January sales and taking in the spectacle of the parade with many bands and entertainers along the parade route out to the Kessock Bridge.  Groupe F the team that put together the London Hogmanay fireworks are controlling the fireworks display in Inverness.  Since yesterday all the equipment and work has been going on to prepare for Saturday night.  The Kessock Bridge has never have been seen in this spectacular way before.  All sorts of bands and from pipes to marching bands are in the big parade. Anyone can carry a flaming torch by making donation to charities that will be selling them before the start at Huntly Street.  A huge organisational structure has been building towards this big event.

Proposed Post Office Changes In Highland - Press and Journal
Post Offices in Barrock, Pultneytown, and Spitall are proposed for closure.  Several others are proposed to be replaced with outreach servbices and these are  Latheron, Mid clyth, Canisbay.  In Sutherland  Farr is also marked for an outreach service .  there are also proposals to reduce the hours of some of the present outreach arrangements.  More information can be found at 
This is consultation and the public and other bodies are asked to respond by 18th February 2008.  Email responses can be sent to
Alternative formats for the information is available for the visually impaired and it can be obtained by contacting the helpline at 08457 223344
Highland councillors will hear more at special meeting in Inverness for representative councillors from each area on Thursday.

Latest Police Reports
Cars Vandalised in Pultneytown Area of Wick
Assault - Bridge Street, Wick
Vandalism At Thurso High School
Windows Broken At New Flats - Williamson Street, Wick
Window Broken At St Clair Arms Hotel, Castletown
Windows Smashed At Youth Club, Millbank Road, Thurso
Vandalism At Pennyland Primary School, Thurso
Caravan Damaged At Janet Street, Thurso
Car Damaged At Nicolson Street, Wick

Desperate Need for Youth Club Volunteers
Both Youth Clubs in Thurso and Halkirk require volunteer helpers, if you have 3 hours a week to spare please consider volunteering with the Thurso or Halkirk Youth Club. The Thursday Evening group which caters for youth aged between 12-18 desperately need more volunteers, club hours are 7-9.30PM, if you feel you can offer assistance please contact Catherine Patterson 01955 605470 or Angela Alexander 01847 895782 to find out more.


POLICE say they are pleased at the reduction in the number of people caught drink driving at the end of this year’s Festive Road Safety Campaign. A total of 61 drink drivers were detected during this year’s four-week campaign, compared to 75 in 2006/2007. Only one drug drivers was detected during this year’s campaign. The final week of the campaign saw 13 drink drivers detected, compared to 22 during the same period last year. Police believe that one of the reasons for the decrease could be the beginning of a change in attitudes towards the dangerous practice of drink driving.

Highland Lights rounding off a year of highlights!
Highland Lights ~ Solais na Gaidhealtachd, the climax to Highland 2007 in Inverness on Saturday 12 January 2008, promises to be a great night out for all the family. Wrap up warm and take part in this fantastic extravaganza of music, fire and fireworks planned by Inverness to mark the close of Highland 2007, Scotland's year of Highland culture on An t-Seann Bliadhn' Ùr - The Old New Year. A magical, musical Torchlight Procession featuring pipes and drums, marching bands, street theatre and fire surprises will begin on Huntly Street, near the Ness Bridge at 7pm. From the old town, the procession will wind its way along the river towards the Kessock Bridge for a spectacular firework finale. Created by Groupe F, regarded by many as the world's leading fireworks company, this breathtaking display, choreographed to music to be broadcast on MFR, will be the first ever pyrotechnic show to take place from the Kessock Bridge. The fireworks will commence at 8.30pm and will be visible from across the city and beyond.

A Stormy Day At Lybster Harbour

These photos taken at Lybster harbour were sent in by  Marshall Bowman showing the stormy day we had in Caithness on Friday.  For larger views click through to view full size here under each photo. In the first photo you can see the Beatrice oil platform and the wind mills in the background.

Seasonably Cold in Chicago -
A Blog posted today from an American now living in Caithness but back for a few weeks in her old haunts. The blogs main title is 'Home in the Highlands' by Landgirl.  The blog is mix of items on life in Caithness and America. Her husband is a Caithness farmer and well known writer and he also is blogger we have linked to in recent times.  He writes his blog under the name 'Rain on My Window' by Scorrie.  Both these blogs are now listed in the Caithness Web sites page and link to that page is near the bottom left of this page.  Plenty of good writing and reading in both of these sets of blogs.

Sunday Papers
Nuclear alert: PM's bribe boosts dumping of waste - THE INDEPENDENT on Sunday
Secret deal will be followed by £1bn move to find long-term disposal facility for the most dangerous radioactive waste, so securing the future of nuclear power plants. By Environment Editor Geoffrey Lean
This article is about Sellafield in Cumbria but the question is how much should Caithness get if part of the nations nuclear waste facilities are placed at Dounreay?

North Pier At Wick Warning For Wintry Weather Conditions
Wick Police would like to remind the public regarding the dangers of walking near the North Pier, Scalesburn, Wick during wintry conditions. This area has been particularly affected by spray and foam and continues to be monitored by the Wick Harbour Master.

Latest Dogs In Pets Corner
Carolyne Poulton has sent these photos of her labradors taken by Martina Cross.  D'Arcy is a Black Labrador Retriever and Emma is Chocolate Labrador Retriever.

Pets Corner Index


The Peatlands Partnership
The Peatlands Partnership was formed at the end of 2006 following the completion of the LIFE Peatlands Project and aims to develop and build on that project.  The first newsletter is available and was published in Nov 2007


More Names For Pennyland 1963
New list sent by Helen Daly
Helen said "Not so good on the boys I'm afraid, but pretty near a full house on the girls. Unless someone else knows differently."



Wick New Year Street Party Video      Thurso Street Party Video 1   Video 2
These videos did extremely well on the Youtube listings so click and play them in full to push them up the international listings

Year Of Big Projects - Times and Star
This item caught our eye today about West Cumbria and it mirrors Caithness planning for the next few decades and working with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA).  Information on plans for Caithness can be found in the Regeneration pages

Author Uses Badbea Village In Caithness As Setting For New Novel
Escondido author Chris Holmes is using his Highland roots as inspiration for his new novel “Blood on the Tartan”.  He and his daughter visited Caithness in 1995. Badbea pages

Change to One Bag Rule at Airports But Check With Your Airline
Air passengers in the Highlands and Islands are being advised to check what hand luggage restrictions apply with their chosen airline before travelling next week. The Department for Transport has approved new security arrangements at a number of airports in the UK. This means that at these airports the restriction previously imposed limiting hand baggage to one item per person will no longer apply with effect from 7 January 2008. However, airlines apply their own operational policies governing the number of items of hand baggage which may be taken in to the aircraft cabin. It is therefore essential that passengers arrive at their departure airport aware of their airline's policy on hand luggage. HIAL airports where the one bag restriction no longer applies are: Benbecula; Inverness; Islay; Kirkwall; Stornoway; Sumburgh and Wick.

First National Braille Week Live Chat Today at 2.30pm
To coincide with the birthday of Louis Braille (the inventor of Braille) and World Braille Day, Royal Blind is launching the first National Braille Week in the UK. To support the event the charity has developed a website that celebrates all aspects of Braille, . Visitors to the site will be able to discover interesting facts about Braille - how it was created and how it is used in the 21st century - and send an e-card with messages rendered into a Braille image using a Yomego(4) entertainment platform. Recipients will be given Braille information to decipher the message or will be able to follow a link back to the RoyalBlind site to have the message decoded for them.

Get Thinking Of How To Save Energy - Yet Another Big Price Rise for Electricity Coming Soon
BBC story announcing npower is about announce a big hike in electricity prices following oil reaching $100 a barrel.  Should we will get the Christmas lights down a day early?

Witnesses Wanted By Police For Vandalism Cases In Past Few Days
Vandalism Nicolson Street, Wick
Car Damaged At Princes Street, Thurso
Window Damaged At Wellington Street, Wick
Freswick Traffic Collision Update
Car Tyre Slashed At Round House, Wick
Shop Window Damaged High Street, Wick
Several Cars Vandalised At St Peters Road, Thurso

Paper Scissors Stone - Paper arts workshops with Joanne B Kaar
Silk Paper Making - 20th April 2008 - Pulp Paper Making - 27th May 2008
Arty Book Binding - 4th May 2008 - Chinese Seal Stone - 11th May 2008
All workshops will be in the recently refurbished Castlehill Heritage Centre next to Castletown Harbour & Dunnet Beach, Castletown, Caithness. All will run from 10am - 4pm.
They are limited to 12 participants each day. All materials are provided as part of the workshop fees. Please bring your own pack lunch. There are facilities for making hot drinks.

Writer turns personal tale of suffering into triumph - The Herald
Ann Kelley's The Bower Bird, published by Edinburgh's independent Luath Press, yesterday won the children's book category in the prestigious Costa Book Awards, previously known as the Whitbread prizes. "I was born in Yorkshire but I went to school in Thurso, indeed that's where I learned to read, so this is all Scotland's fault."

Inverness – Heathrow Air Link to Cease
Highlands and Islands Airports today (3 January 2007) said bmi’s decision to stop its London Heathrow – Inverness operation at the end of March was driven by market pressures. Inglis Lyon, managing director of HIAL, said: “We have worked very hard with bmi to maintain the Heathrow link which is an important one for our region. It’s disappointing that it will stop but not surprising given the pressure on slots at Heathrow.

Since We Are Having A Few Videos Here Is The First Minister Alex Salmond For The New Year 

North Light Blog
Jamie Buchanan a hotelier in Caithness reflects on the tourist trade and his photography - great photos on his Flickr web pages  This blog is now listed in the Caithness Web Sites links page a link to which can be found near the bottom of this page.

Report on Thurso And Wick street parties

Happy New Year From

More From Thurso 

Hogmanay Bonfire At Bignold Park, Wick

Hogmanay At Market Square 61 - 72

From Thurso

Market Square Wick Last Night After The Bells

Hogmanay In Caithness 49 - 60

Hogmanay In Caithness 37 - 48

Hogmanay In Caithness 25 - 36

Hogmanay In Caithness 13 - 24 

Hogmanay In Caithness Last Night First Photos From Market Square, Wick
If you would like to send in your Hogmanay photos for inclusion in this gallery email them to


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