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Alec Cormack

The Highland Council has appointed Geo-Rope Ltd to undertake planned maintenance works to the rock face above the A890 Stromeferry Bypass.  Works are programmed to begin on the 10th of July for approximately 8 weeks. 

The works include the de-vegetation and light scaling of rock slopes, adjusting existing passive netting systems, clearance of rock material behind rock netting, installation of wire rope profiling cables, dowels, active and high strength active rock netting.

There are two sections of slope undergoing maintenance both of which are situated approximately 1km west of the avalanche shelter.  The works will require traffic management on the adjacent single track road and the road may require short closures during certain operations but this will be kept to a minimum.

Supervising staff from The Highland Council will be on site during the works.                   Service Centre 01349 886606


Alec Cormack

Do you have a regular free morning, afternoon or even day when you might be able to be in the Gatehouse at Attadale Gardens?

We are happy to pay your petrol money if you had some time you could spare every week during this season, that is till the end of October.
You do not have to know about gardens but you do have to be friendly and willing to talk to visitors
It would be wonderful if you could so do get in touch on 01520 722217 or by email
to to talk about it if you're interested

LOCAL TELEPHONE DIRECTORY - Covering postcode area IV54 – Fifth Edition

Alec Cormack

The last directory was published in 2012, and I have been persuaded that an updated version is necessary! I am currently working my way through the latest BT Phone Book, checking entries against my existing records, adding and removing where needed. In order to comply with Data Protection regulations, I can only use information which is already published and is in the public domain, such as the BT Phone Book and local advertisements. From my previous productions I am aware that some local residents who have ar- ranged to be nationally ex-directory may wish to have a local entry, or wish to publish their mobile number or email address. If you fall into this category, or conversely do not wish to have any details included, please advise me as soon as possible by email to, giving me your permission to publish your specific information.

Previous editions have also included some “yellow pages” of local businesses and trades, details of which I have obtained from sources such as An Carrannach. Again, if you would like to include your trade or business details, please let me have an email.

The closing date for these extras is 30 June 2017. I look forward to hearing from you!

Floating Wind Farm to create up to 200 jobs at Kishorn

Alec Cormack

 Dry Dock pumping out in progress

Dry Dock pumping out in progress

Floating Wind Farm to create up to 200 jobs at Kishorn

Kishorn Dry Dock will come out of a 23 year long hibernation after an agreement was signed today to use the site during the construction of the world’s largest floating wind farm.

Last used to work on the Skye Bridge in 1994, the dry-dock is one of the largest in Western Europe and will now be used to help build the floating turbines for Kincardine Offshore’s development of eight turbines off the coast of Aberdeen.

The exclusivity agreement between Kishorn Port Ltd and Kincardine Offshore means work will start at the site in August, with the first turbine of the 50MW array expected to be in the water in the second quarter of 2018.

Director of the project, Carlos Barat, said: “This is a significant development for the people of Kishorn and will directly lead to the creation of up to 200 much-needed jobs in the area.

“We are proud that we are able to support local business as we progress towards bringing this important development forward. Today’s agreement to use Kishorn dry-dock will herald a new era for offshore renewables and, of course, for this area as the terrific potential this facility offers the country is realised.”

Simon Russell, a director of Kishorn Port Limited, said: “In signing this deal, Kincardine has demonstrated the significant strategic and technical strength of Kishorn’s dry dock.

“The combination of Leith’s on-site quarry at Kishorn with one of the largest dry docks in Western Europe makes the yard an ideal location for manufacturing large concrete structures. This, combined with the expertise of Ferguson Transport and Shipping in operating and managing the port, will breathe new life into an area that has suffered for many years from a lack of commercial investment.”

Kishorn Port was historically an oil and gas fabrication yard, used for the casting of the 600,000-tonne Ninian Central platform in the late 1970s. The last time the port’s two 13,000 tonne dock gates were moved was in 1994, when the two concrete foundation caissons for the Skye Bridge were floated out.

The agreement with Kincardine Offshore will see Kishorn Port used for the fabrication of the semi-spar substructure for the 6MW turbines, which will operate 15km off the coast of Kincardineshire.

When in operation, the development will prevent 94,500 tonnes of CO2 entering the atmosphere every year.

Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy Paul Wheelhouse, who attended the ceremony, said: “I am delighted to be here in Kishorn today to witness the signing of the exclusivity agreement between Kishorn Port Ltd and the team developing the Kincardine Offshore wind farm - a key, newly consented floating offshore windfarm. This agreement paves the way for work to begin at Kishorn Dry Dock for the first time in 25 years, constructing the Kincardine Floating Offshore Windfarm, which will produce enough electricity to power almost 56,000 homes.

“As outlined in our new draft Energy Strategy, both fixed and floating offshore wind technologies are set to take an increasingly important role in the generation of renewable electricity. With 25% of Europe’s offshore wind potential, and through development with due regard to our natural environment, Scotland is strongly positioned to maximise the economic and environmental benefits that both technologies can deliver. The Scottish Government is determined to ensure projects deliver supply chain jobs in communities across Scotland and we have been encouraging developers to do all they can to maximise their economic impact, so today's agreement is very welcome.”

Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has invested £158,932 in the £450,000 costs of upgrading the dry dock in readiness for new contracts. HIE’s area manager for Skye, Lochaber and Wester Ross, Robert Muir, said: “It is great to see Kishorn coming to life again. The dock has huge potential, not just for renewables, but for oil and gas and aquaculture too.
“The site will provide valuable rural jobs and contribute to both economic and community growth, and wider competitiveness of the region. We very much welcome this milestone today.”
Once completed, power from Kincardine Offshore will be brought ashore to an Aberdeen operations centre and will connect to the grid at Redmoss sub-station.

About Kishorn Port Ltd

Kishorn Port Ltd is a joint venture between Ferguson Transport (Spean Bridge) Ltd and Leiths (Scotland) Ltd.

Located on the north west coast of Scotland, Kishorn Port and Dry Dock is the ideal site for the manufacturing, laydown and assembly of renewable energy devices for offshore wind, wave and tidal sectors as well as oil & gas and decommissioning.

 L-R Iain Leith (KPL), Simon Russell (KPL), Allan MacAskill (KOWL), Carlos Barat (KOWL), Alasdair Ferguson (KPL), Carol MacKinnon (KPL)

L-R Iain Leith (KPL), Simon Russell (KPL), Allan MacAskill (KOWL), Carlos Barat (KOWL), Alasdair Ferguson (KPL), Carol MacKinnon (KPL)


Alec Cormack

Last autumn, the Lochcarron Community Adopt a Barrel Scheme committee turned their attention to the twelve wooden benches along Main Street that had fallen into disrepair.  A refurbishment project, replacing the slats with new Iroko wood and fitting new bolts, is now complete thanks to a grant from the Lochcarron Community Fund.  Thanks to John Murphy (Tornapress) for supplying the wood and to John Robinson for cutting the slats and fitting.

Pictured l – r  Christine Houser, Cathy Geddes, Jan Overmeer, Audrey Tomlinson and Anthea Zell

Lochcarron Leisure Centre Update

Alec Cormack

Community Survey Results Show Overwhelming Support

We distributed 590 questionnaires to households in Lochcarron, Kishorn, Sheildaig and Applecross. So far we have had 309 forms returned (52%). More than 95% were in favour of the proposal to build a leisure centre on the site that we have identified. 

Initial analysis suggests that what our community ranks most highly is a Multi-Purpose Sports Hall, including a Cafe and a Fitness Suite. We have noted that there is a clear wish for the development to include a swimming pool – more than 25% of respondents mentioned this. In the past we have been advised that this would be unaffordable – but given the strength of the response we will take a close look at this to see whether or not it may be feasible. It is paramount that, as a charitable company, we can operate without making a loss. 

AGM -- Lochcarron Village Hall 7.30 pm on 9th of May

All are invited to attend our AGM as above.. come and hear an update on our progress so far and let us know what you think. New nominations for the board include Keith Pearce, John Ireland and Karen Malloy. Other nominations can be considered and voted upon on the night. 

  Plans for new fundraising:

Over the last few months we have needed to pay out over a thousand pounds on planning fees. We are now at the stage where our funds are running low. Watch out for local events which we will run to help boost our working funds. More on this month!


Company Limited by Guarantee No. SC345431 - Registered Scottish Charity No. SC040502

Registered Office: MacLeod & MacCallum, 28, Queensgate,Inverness. IV1 1YN

Lochcarron Gallery Update

Alec Cormack

On Saturday (1st April) we're reverting to our summer hours. We'll be open 10am to 5pm Monday to Saturday. Maybe it's not such a surprise given the lovely weather we've been having recently.

We have a new exhibition starting on 1st April. Our 'featured artist' this month, is Alison Dunlop a Canadian artist who has made Scotland her home, living and working in Opinan, near Gairloch. We have a great show of abstract watercolours from Alison – here's a bit about her.

Alison works in both watercolours and oils, and describes these two strands of her work as follows.  “Watercolours, of the moment: an essence of fluid, melting movement, at times ethereal, at times riotous…. and then the studied calm of the oils: motion slowed to a controlled, frozen, full stop, where it dances forever in one form. “

She is an elected member of the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour and is a past Vice-President of the Society. She is also a past President of Visual Arts Scotland. Duncan MacMillan, Art Critic of The Scotsman said about her work "This is essential watercolour."

Please come along and see Alison's watercolours and tell us what you think. She has given us some cards and booklets too, so there's something for everyone to enjoy.

A Special Evening – Thursday 13th April - 7-9pm

We want to say thanks for your support over our first year., so please come along for a chat and a glass of wine. Come and meet Jackie Parsons who is joining us in the Gallery. She designs and makes a variety of handmade clothes which will now be for sale in the Gallery.

Good Friday Surprises – Friday 14th April

“What are these surprises?” you may ask. There might be a bargain box: there might be giveaways: so why don't you come and see?


Happy Holidays!


Aileen, Cindie and Mairi

Alec Cormack

I am writing to draw your attention to the VisitScotland & NC500 Business Roadshow, which is being held at the Carron Restaurant on Wednesday 8th March. Full details below.

Virtually all LaDBA members are involved with tourism, either directly or indirectly, and it is very much in our interest to attend this event. Both VisitScotland, and NC500, are making a big effort to popularise the Highlands this year, and this is our chance to raise with both organisations any points we want to make, and to find out what help is available for our businesses.

You will find details of how to book your FREE place on the New and Events Page

The Carron Restaurant have generously offered to host this event, and have recently built a new extension (and will be re-opening from Monday 13th February), so this will be a good opportunity for us all to see what John and Claire have done. Those who can't attend on 8th March are invited to call in anytime to see what has been achieved.

Please book now, while you are thinking about it, and make a big effort to attend this very worthwhile event.

Hope to see you there.

Alastair Baxter

Chairman - Lochcarron and District Business and Tourism Association

Sport in Lochcarron - Golf, Sailing and Shinty

Alec Cormack


The Club runs regular dinghy racing and training from April to October, and its yacht races are held throughout the season from May onwards, usually on Sundays.


  • Lochcarron Shinty Club are about to start a new season playing in North Division 2. Home games take place in the attractive venue of Battery Park in Lochcarron on most Saturdays from early March to late October. For fixtures and results visit their website.

Tourism Development Strategy

Alec Cormack

The fullWester Ross Tourism Development strategy document is available here 

This is the opening few paragraphs

Wester Ross is an area of the North West Highlands with a population of 6,000. The main population centres are Ullapool, Gairloch and Lochcarron, although there are a large number of smaller villages and rural communities.

Tourism is a key component of the local economy. 16.1% of Wester Ross’s working population are employed in the distribution, hotels and catering sector, compared with 9.3% across Highland region as a whole. Distribution, hotels and catering is the largest employment sector in Wester Ross. In addition, 23.1% of local housing stock is used as second or holiday homes. This compares with 6.2% across Highland region as a whole. (All figures from Highland Council, “Wester Ross Facts and Figures” appendix to Wester Ross Local Plan)

Visit Wester Ross is one of a number of local tourism and business associations and community organisations with an active interest in developing and promoting tourism. It is the only such body that aspires to represent and support tourism interests throughout Wester Ross, rather than a smaller, more localised part of the area. As such, it is recognised as the foremost private sector led tourism body in the area by agencies such as Highlands Council, Highlands & Islands Enterprise and VisitScotland, and has sought to develop an area wide remit by liaising and working in partnership with other localised groups.

Visit Wester Ross developed out of the earlier Celtic Fringe tourism group, which primarily focused on the National Scenic Area of Wester Ross. Celtic Fringe collaborated with Gairloch & Loch Ewe Action Forum (GALE), a community owned charitable development company, Lochcarron & District Business Association, Gairloch Business Association and Ullapool Tourism and Business Association on the Tourism @ Wester Ross Initiative, which developed and began implementing a Marketing Strategy for the area in 2005. However, the initiative disbanded when it was unable to secure sustainable funding streams to implement the Strategy in full.

Celtic Fringe changed its name to Visit Wester Ross in order to continue to progress elements of the 2005 Marketing Strategy across all of the area. Visit Wester Ross currently has approximately 160 member businesses and organisations.

Visit Wester Ross have now commissioned Tourism and Leisure Solutions to assist in drafting a new Tourism Development Strategy for the area that will identify and prioritise tourism development opportunities to 2020. 

The North Coast 500 Business Club Membership - LaDBA Discount

Alec Cormack

Fully paid up members of LaDBA are able to claim a discount on their membership of the North Coast 500 Business Club.

If you received an email from NC500 you will see that you can claim the discount by ticking the appropriate box. We have work with Visit Wester Ross to ensure that all full paid up members who wish to join the Business Club can do so at a reduced rate. 

If you have not received an email from them here are the links to join.

Download Subscription Form

Direct Debit Mandate

Download Business Brand and Trademark terms

Extract from the NC500 email:

The North Coast 500 Business Club

The North Coast 500 (NC500) has experienced phenomenal growth this year, emerging as an award-winning brand concept that has been celebrated and recognised by national and international media, including; National Geographic, Lonely Planet, The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Times, The Scotsman, The Scottish Sun, BBC Landward, BBC Countryfile, British Airways, American Airlines and many, many more. We have reached a potential audience of over 620 million across our various media channels and with a significant social media following and media interest, we would like to use this platform to tell the world about our businesses in the beautiful, under-estimated, North Highlands of Scotland. 

We have created the North Coast 500 Business Club Membership to create a closer knit community of the businesses from all corners of the North Highlands, who share a common goal in creating better opportunities for their businesses and outstanding experiences for visitors. We will be offering the following benefits to members; 

  1. Permission to use the NC500 & North Coast 500 branding (with guidelines and terms of use)
  2. Members Logo on NC500 website listing
  3. NC500 Member window sticker for business 
  4. Monthly newsletters on statistics and reach and opportunities
  5. Exclusive members only seminars & networking events
  6. Priority List for PR & Marketing activities
  7. NC500 Maps Order Form
  8. Introduction to Social Media Package ( 8 social media posts each year)
  9. Opportunity to apply for a merchandise license
  10. Opportunity to reach the NC500 consumer memberships via various promotional platforms

These fantastic benefits have been designed to highlight you as a trusted business and friend of the route to potential visitors and also to increase your reach through our Members Only marketing opportunities. 

How Much?

he prices are based on an annual cost and can be paid by direct debit (10% discount) or by Bank Transfer. The prices below indicate the annual cost when paying by direct debit. For non-direct debit pricing, please refer to the Business Subscription Form. 

non-VAT  Registered £100

1- 2       Employees £150

3 - 5      Employees £200

6 - 10    Employees £320

11 - 20  Employees £450

21 - 30  Employees £600

31 +      Employees £960
* All prices are inclusive of VAT unless otherwise stated. 

We are pleased to announce that we will be offering up to £40 off the cost of your Membership if you are a fully paid up member of any of the following recognised Area Tourism Groups; Venture North, Visit Wester Ross, Explore Easter Ross, Lochcarron & District Business Association, Discover Assynt or Black Isle Tourism.

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about the benefits please telephone the NC500 main office on 01955 609806 or email



An Carrannach

Alec Cormack

An Carrannach.

The General Interest Magazine of Lochcarron, Shieldaig, Applecross, Kishorn, and Torridon and Kinlochewe Districts has recently enjoyed a production quality facelift. The magazine (print only) is a rich source of information for news, announcements, and reports about local events, activities of voluntary groups and those of clubs and associations, together with weather records, and much more. Published monthly, it is widely available in local shops and other retail outlets.

For those unable to buy a copy of An Carrannach locally it's available on subscription.

Lochcarron Out and About Guide

Alec Cormack

Many shorter routes are community Core Paths designated and maintained by the local Council. These routes are usually marked and signposted. Other walks use old Rights of Way that provided vital links between communities before the advent of car travel. The upland routes often follow stalking paths, built in the 19th century to provide access for deer shooting and retrieval by horse. Some sections are rough and pathless. Nearly all routes described are circular to facilitate car users. More experienced hill-walkers can go beyond the bounds of these walks to enjoy the magnificent mountains of the area. We have nine Munros (peaks over 3,000 feet high) and eight Corbetts (hills over 2,500 feet high) within a 10 mile radius of Lochcarron. Before using this guide please carefully read the User Information. Accept responsibility for your own safety and remember the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. Enjoy your walking! 


Lochcarron Out and About Guide

Alec Cormack


The Lochcarron area has much to offer discerning visitors – notably its superb scenery, with all the enjoyment that affords. Well known to walkers and climbers for many years, fishermen too are now discovering it. Here, selected lochs and rivers are revealed not only as places where an angler’s skill may be tested, but also as wild and beautiful places in their own right.

Click below to see the section on Fishing.

Keeping up with the rules and regulations

Alec Cormack

People who let properties have a few more hoops to navigate by the end of this year. The Scottish government has introduced new regulations which mean that anyone renting out a property will need to comply.

A number of members have already discovered the extent of the changes they need to make and our thanks to Jim Mould who has created an information sheet about these new hoops.

Jim points out that his notes are for guidance ONLY, your specific situation may differ from others so take professional advice about your needs. That said our thanks to Jim Mould for the effort he has taken to ensure his cottage owners are aware of the new rules.


New Fire Safety Regulations for Furnished Holiday Lets

2nd February 2016

It has come to my attention, purely by chance, that new regulations have recently been introduced which cover self-catering holiday lets. I understand that the regulations are already in place and that holiday property owners have until the end of 2016 in which to comply with them.

These regulations seem to have been a fairly closely guarded secret and many holiday property owners appear to be completely unaware of them, as indeed was I until I happened to telephone Iain JeckMacKenzie, our local electrician, on another matter. Iain himself had discovered details of the regulations by chance as a result of having been contacted by one of his customers who wanted him to bring the electrics in his cottage up to date. The gist of what Iain told me was as follows:-

All smoke alarms have a working life of 10 years at the end of which they are regarded as at “end of life” and need replacing. This is a compulsory requirement for holiday homes – and obviously advisory for one’s own home.

It is now a requirement that smoke alarms in holiday lets should be hard-wired, not simply battery operated. This has been a requirement of building regulations for all new builds for several years but now applies to all holiday properties without exception.

The battery back-up in hard-wired alarms now needs to be of the lithium type. These batteries are available in the same 9-volt format as ordinary smoke alarm batteries. They’re more expensive (£9.99 each on the Maplins’ website, for example) but they do last for 10 years, so they’re cheaper in the long run. “Ordinary” batteries in smoke alarms are supposed to be replaced every 12 months.

  • Smoke alarms in kitchen areas must incorporate a heat detector.

  • All the smoke alarms in a property must now be inter-linked so that they all sound if just one of them is triggered. That should make holiday guests think twice about burning the toast! The inter- linking can either be hard-wired or wireless. The latter is obviously easier.

There should be a carbon monoxide detector in rooms where there are fuel-burning devices. These can be battery operated. Hard-wired ones are available but are much more expensive.

Holiday properties must now have a modern consumer unit with the appropriate trips rather than the old-fashioned type of fuse box. This must make sense anyway as we hardly want holiday guests trying to repair a blown fuse.

Although not a requirement of the regulations, I did find in one official online document a recommendation that there should be some form of emergency lighting in holiday properties to enable swift and easy escape from the building in the event of a fire causing a power failure. Once again, this makes sense anyway, especially in this part of the world where power outages are not unknown, as it’s unwise to allow holiday guests to play around with matches and candles.

Finally, very important: each holiday property must have an up-to-date Electrical Certificate. This is not the same as PAT testing which is merely a check on individual electrical appliances. The Electrical Certificate is issued by a fully qualified electrician and confirms that the whole electrical installation in the building complies with current standards. The certificate is valid for 5 years at the end of which another must be obtained.

I hope this is helpful. The foregoing is based on my understanding of the information given to me verbally by Iain, so I cannot guarantee that its 100% accurate. My best advice is that you should contact a professionally qualified electrician and/or fire safety officer as soon as possible. I believe there are some quite hefty penalties for failing to comply with the new regulations so this is obviously a matter of quite some importance. 

Jim Mould

Three documents are available here

Do you have a view about this? Our next meeting is on 25th February in the Upper Village Hall at 7:30pm. Tell us your views. 

Good News!

Alec Cormack

Resurfacing works on the A896 Main Street Lochcarron from Mon 30th Nov expect delays.

Good to hear now what about all the other bits of work the local roads need.