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Caithness News Bulletins June 2003

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30 June 03
Golf Challenge Round Caithness
On 1 July 2003 up to 12 men will attempt to do what we believe has never before been attempted , i.e. to play all four Caithness golf courses in one day. This will be a sponsored golf challenge with funds raised going towards providing suitable transport for the Neurological Group's Wick group which meets in Wick Youth Club.
Tee-off time at Reay is 4.30am(!) with Thurso around 7.30am, followed later in the day by Lybster (2 round played here) and lastly Wick. If you see any of the guys on the course, or in the bar in Wick afterwards, please feel free to drop a donation into the golf bags! Your support will be much appreciated!

30 June 03
Anyone thinking about a career in the music business will have the chance to find out how to get started at a series of Highlands and Islands workshops tied in with the upcoming Proclaimers tour.
Unlike TV shows like Popstars or Fame Academy, the 'Get Into Music' workshops have been designed to be just as relevant to those interested in working behind the scenes - in recording, production or distribution for example - as they are for budding performers.

New Play Park, Bignold Park, Wick Opens Sunday 6 July 2.00pm 30 June
The park will be officially opened on Sunday, 6th of July and Wick Play Areas Community Group are holding a fun day from 2pm and want to invite everyone along to help us celebrate the opening. As well as all the new equipment there will be a bouncy castle, music, beat the goalie, stalls, hot dogs etc etc with all proceeds going into the development of the park.   The Nold Poster to print and display

A Red Admiral Butterfly Snapped today In a Caithness Garden 29 June
Colin Stewart took this picture of a red admiral butterfly in his neighbours garden today.   There are quite a range of moths and Butterflies in the county.  If anyone else has managed to take any pictures we would be happy to start a new section to contain them and build a record of them.  Details of location and names would be helpful.  If any rare ones are sent in we will omit the location.   Nature and Environment Index

excavate overlay At Battle Moss, Thrumster On Sunday 29 June
Hundreds of glass blocks were laid out along the lines of stone rows at Battlemoss, Loch of Yarrows and in three circles shown by a recent geophysics survey.  In August archaeological excavations will take place  - the first of any stone rows in CaithnessThe art side of this unique project continues at Dunbeath on Wednesday at Dunbeath  when the glass blocks will be built beneath Chapel Hill.  2 July 10.00am-12.00pm; 1.00-3.00pm; 3.30-5.00pm; 5.30-7.00pm glass installation - Chapel Hill, Dunbeath Heritage Trail, Dunbeath,    excavate overlay

29 June 03
Lybster Gala 2003 Pictures

29 June 03
Canisbay Show 2003 Pictures

27 June 03
UKAEA Dounreay today has sent to the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and  the Food Standards Agency the findings of laboratory tests carried out on  rabbit  faeces  found  in an area of the site historically used for the burial of low-level waste.

27 June 03
Donation from Dounreay Employees Charity Fund to Corssroads Caring for Carers Caithness
"Crossroads Caring for Carers Caithness are a small charity providing respite care services to carers in Caithness.  The Dounreay Employees Charity Fund recently donated £300 towards the charity for upgrading their software on their computer systems.  Pictured presenting the cheque to Maggie Page, (centre) Co-ordinator of Crossroads are Rob Roy, Chairman of the DECF and Marie Mackay, Secretary of the DECF."

August 11th to 18th 2003

The Future of Entertainment is Interactive
Edinburgh International Games Festival’s ‘Go Play Games’ event to offer visitors a unique opportunity to enjoy hands-on experience of the best of contemporary gaming.   Visitors to Edinburgh’s Royal Museum during the month of August will find themselves in the unlikely position of being asked to touch the exhibits, as the world-famous visitor attraction throws open its doors to the ‘Go Play Games’ exhibition.

25 June 03
Mount Pleasant Caithness Netball Champions
Mount Pleasant Primary School won the netball title with a 6-5 victory over Pulteneytown Academy at Castletown


25 June 03
Castletown Primary Caithness Football Champions

Castletown Primary School won the football title for the first time ever with a 2-0 victory over Pulteneytown Academy at Pulteneytown


25 June 03
Caithness Cub Camp At Olrig

Last weekend the first ever Caithness Cub Camp was held at Olrig, by Castletown. There were 50 cubs from 1st Dunnet Bay, Reay, 1st Thurso, 2nd Thurso and 1st Wick packs. The cubs were mixed into 4 teams for the activity bases over the weekend.

25 June 03
Draft Nuclear Sites and Radioactive Substances Bill

UKAEA is determined to be the chosen supplier of choice to the new Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) for the management of its former nuclear research sites............ 

25 May 03
CASE May Report

Unemployment, Grants Training etc for May in Caithness and Sutherland

24 June 03
Following advertising, an open competition and interviewing a number of high quality applicants the Board of Caithness Archaeological Trust is delighted to announce that Dr Andrew Heald has been appointed as Archaeological Development Officer to the Trust.  Andy Heald, who was Director on behalf of the National Museums for Scotland and University of Edinburgh of last year’s excavations of the broch at Everley, said, “This is a great opportunity to work with the people of Caithness to promote their amazingly diverse, but little known heritage, which is of the highest quality.

24 June 03

Results from the biggest ever visitor survey in the Highlands and Moray will be unveiled in detail at a series of presentations across the area over the coming weeks.  Almost 5000 visitors were interviewed over 12 months as part of the Highlands and Islands Enterprise-led project to give tourism businesses and industry planners an insight into visitor profiles, transport arrangements, spending patterns and accommodation needs as well as visitor satisfaction levels.

24 June 03
Denture Venture
A Caithness-based dental technician has plenty to smile about after being awarded a grant to start his own business.  Qualified dental technician, Allan Young has been awarded a financial package from Caithness and Sutherland Enterprise (CASE) via the HIE-Starts programme.  HIE-Starts is a Network-wide initiative designed to help new businesses by providing a regular income for the first twelve months of trading, usually the most difficult time for fledgling businesses.  Allan is setting up his new business - AKL Dental Laboratory - at The Bridges Dental Clinic in Wick, where he has leased a room from dental surgeon Neil Erridge.  He initially plans to concentrate on denture work from The Bridges Clinic but could eventually provide his services to clinics in the wider community, as well as offering a denture repair service direct to the public.

24 June 03
Glenmorangie Drams It Up For Charity
How Many Caithness Charities Could Benefit

Glenmorangie plc is setting an example to employers across Scotland by signing up to Payroll Giving to boost their commitment to good causes and the community.  They, along with The Giving Campaign - a National initiative to boost charitable giving in the UK, are urging more local employers to follow suit.

 23 June 03
Achvarasdal Home Future Under Review
By Church Of Scotland

10 homes including Achvarasdal in Caithness will close unless quick solutions are found to the problems they face. To that end, the Board will continue to work closely with local authorities over the coming weeks in order to try to save these homes.  However, should no solution be found within the next three months, these homes will close by the end of the current financial year.................................

22 June 03
Caithness Canine Club 2003 Open Dog Show

The 2003 Caithness Canine Open Dog Show was well attended although entries were down on last year due another show elsewhere.  The club had recruited Albert Wight a well known show judge who recently judged the Best In Show category at Crufts in London.  Mr Wight worked hard from 9.30am  working through various classes including Gundogs - working - pastoral -hounds - utility and finally Best In show. Mrs Betty Flavell also well known in the judging circuit was also there to deliver her expertise in Toys/Terriers and other varieties.  Caithness Canine Club runs a range of classes for dog owners...

22 June 03
More Trinkie Pictures From Mike Brunton

21 June 03
John Thurso MP Officially Opened Homeaid Centre

Homeaid the charity serving Caithness and Sutherland by recycling furniture and household goods had its centre officially opened by John Thurso MP who praised the organisation for its success in preventing so much going to landfill and providing a source of furniture and other goods for people on low incomes.  A number of councillors had also turned out with Caithness Convenor David Flear helping John Thurso try out the stocks ready for fund raising at the county show in July. 

21 June 03
Trinkie Midsummer Barbecue A Big Hit

Ian Sutherland and his Trinkie Volunteers brought off a very successful barbecue fundraiser to make some cash to repair Wick's outdoor swimming pool.  This famous landmark was once again ringing with fun and games and kids swimming in the newly painted pool.   Well done to all concerned........................

19 June 03
"Sustainable Forestry, Biodiversity and Biomass"
The Highland Council will host a one-day seminar:
Wednesday 25 June 2003 9.00am - 4.30 pm  in the Portland Arms Hotel, Lybster, Caithness
Expert speakers have been invited from Forward Scotland, Highland Birchwoods, Nordic Enterprise Trust, AMEC, Integrated Energy Utilities Limited, SVS Composting, Forest Enterprise, British Geological Survey, the North Highland Leader+ Partnership.  They will share their knowledge on the new technologies and business potential identified for sustainable forestry/biodiversity and biomass utilizing industries and processes.  The Seminar is open to organisations/agencies involved with economic development, small businesses, local forestry groups, community woodland groups, community organisations, land owners, farmers and crofters.  Please note strictly bookings only.

19 June 03

Young scientists from a Caithness school have made a flying visit to the centre of pioneering fusion research at Culham in Oxfordshire.   Stuart Campbell (14) from Wick High School travelled with a friend and teacher to the UKAEA site after winning the top prize in a competition during the Caithness Science Festival. The competition was designed to inspire and encourage youngsters to consider the relevance and impact of science on everyday life, and to consider science and engineering as a career.

Patient Involvement – NHS debate 18.6.03
Rob Gibson MSP

The National Health Service is correctly identified as a key indicator of how a civilised society is working. It is the most cherished service our nation possesses as it gives all citizens a right of access for treatment at the point of need. In European and World terms those countries with such integrated health services show stronger social mobility and less extremes of wealth and poverty. Yet welfare provision has to be participative. It isn’t a sales counter, take it or leave it. That’s why we in the SNP are so frustrated with New Labour and its Lib Dem partners for the six year delays in setting patient consultation and involvement in a workable framework for this age. Why has it taken over fifty years to reach this stage?

18 June 03
Scrabster Pier From The Air
Scrabster Pier Pages



18 June 03
Rhind House Store In Wick Gutted By Fire
About 2000 hrs on Tuesday 17 June 2003 , three units of the Fire Brigade attended a fire within an outbuilding adjacent to Rhind House, Education Department, West Banks Avenue ,Wick.  The building is used as a storeroom for the Education Department and was extensively damaged as a result of the fire. 

18 June 03
Wick School Kids Plant Flowers In Market Square
A few children from each of the four Wick primary schools were out planting up the tubs in Wick despite the blustery wet weather.   The tubs are supplied by the Wick Flower Baskets committee and were first put out last summer in the town centre.

18 June 03
The Gaelic writer Angus Peter Campbell has been appointed to the prestigious Iain Crichton Smith Writing Fellowship which is funded by The Highland Council, the Scottish Arts Council, Skye and Lochalsh Enterprise and Ross and Cromarty Enterprise.  Mr Campbell, who is originally from South Uist, but now lives in Sleat on the Isle of Skye takes over the post from the previous writing fellow, Kevin MacNeil.  Gaelic Links & News

17 June 03

Up to 1,300 businesses and community groups across the Highlands and Islands are in line to share £500,000 worth of grants to help them upgrade to broadband telecommunications.  The area's development agency, Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), is making the funding available to accelerate the take-up of broadband services in the region.

17 June 03
IT Firm Helps Highland Businesses Save £10,000
Leading Scottish IT consultancy, Escape, will next month show businesses throughout the
Highlands and Islands how they could shave almost £10,000 off their IT and internet bills by using new ADSL internet technology.

Health services in the far north have picked up a near £8,000 windfall from the decommissioning of Dounreay.  The  money  was  collected  from  companies  and individuals working on the construction of new office accommodation and donated to the Bignold Wing at Caithness General Hospital in Wick for the purchase of equipment.

15 June 03
Halkirk Gala Pictures

13 June 03

Inverness Museum The ‘Age of Fishes’ until the 8th August  The opening hours are Monday to Saturday 9am-5pm.  Admission is free.  Inverness might have felt a little warm over the last few days, but during the Devonian Period the Highlands lay in the middle of a sandy desert as hot as North Africa is today!  400 million years ago Britain lay on the edge of a large desert continent close to the equator. Fast flowing streams running down from the Highland mountains, then taller than the Himalayas, fed huge river systems and enormous lochs, some of which stretched from Inverness to the Orkneys.  Such an environment was ideal for fishes, which is why the Devonian Period is also known as ‘THE AGE OF FISHES’.

Thurso Boy  Gets Biggest Trout 13 June
12 year old, Scott Mackenzie, of 8 Shebster Court, Thurso caught last night (Wednesday 11th June) on the Thurso River, at the pool in front of the Royal British Legion.  It weighed in at just over 2.5lbs and it is believed to be one of the biggest trout to be caught in the Legion Pool........

Tatties With Attitude 13 June
Does the most commonly used vegetable in the UK get a second look in your garden..  Mike Clark is well on with his own trials aimed at getting the crop in early and with bags of flavour.  Do you just buy "Spuds" or can you remember when tatties had their own taste and texture......................................

Halkirk Gala  - Busy Friday Night and Saturday 13 June
Lots of fun at Halkirk as the gala week races on.  why not go along and join in the fun tonight or tomorrow.  Saturday night has the crowning ceremony with entertainment from the "Big Band" and Thurso Pipe Band

Homeaid Has A New Web Site 13 June
Homeaid the local group recycling furniture for folk who need it have a new web site.  If you are disposing of any household goods that are still basically in good condition give them call and they will uplift the items.  If they cannot use something they may renovate it and sell it to raise funds..

The introduction of Highland Council’s new state of the art “Kerbsider” waste recycling vehicle is not only the first of its kind on the streets of Inverness and Badenoch & Strathspey it is, claims the Council’s Transport, Environmental and  Community Services, the first in operation in Scotland.  As part of the Council’s commitment to reach the Scottish Executive’s National Waste Plan 25% recycling targets by 2006, householders on pilot routes in Inverness and the Aviemore and Boat of Garten areas of Badenoch & Strathspey are being invited to participate in the “Kerbsider” pilot scheme.

The Caithness and Sutherland Vintage Vehicle Club 12 June
The Caithness and Sutherland Vintage Vehicle Club held their first run on Sunday.  Leaving from the harbour at Thurso at 2.30 and travelling to Georgemas then to Smerral and round by Houstry and Inver to a stop at Laidhay Museum.  The final part of the run was to the Portland Arms in Lybster for a meal.  Fortunately the weather stayed dry and everyone made it safely home.

This week 7,000 individuals throughout the Highlands, chosen at random from the edited electoral roll, will be asked to help the council plan for better delivery of services in the region.  They will be receiving copies of The Highland Council’s ‘Performance Survey 2003’, which invites them to complete and return a questionnaire on Council services....................................

The Highland Council has established a Gaelic Select Committee to recognise the significance of current developments to promote a Gaelic Language Bill and to reflect the importance which the Council attaches to Gaelic matters.  Elected Chairman of the Select Committee is Councillor Hamish Fraser, Skye Central, who is Depute Chairman of the Education Culture and Sport Committee, with responsibility for Gaelic.

10 June 03
Fifty one nursery classes across Highland will be affected by industrial action being taken on Wednesday 11th and Thursday12th by nursery auxiliaries and assistants.
The Highland Council has been advised that 61 nursery assistants and 48 auxiliaries intend taking industrial action, which will result in 1,200 pupils losing a pre-school session on these days.
Classes affected on both days are:-
Caithness: Hillhead, Mount Pleasant, North and Pennyland Nurseries.
Sutherland: Bonar Bridge, Bonar Bridge Gaelic Medium, Brora, Dornoch, Gledfield, Helmsdale, Melvich, and Rosehall Nurseries.

10 June 03
East End V Swifts

9 June 03
Isabella Fortuna Back In The Water
A 44 foot long Fifie built in Arbroath in 1890, restored in Wick lifeboat shed in 1998 and now back in the water after more work.
Caithness Field Club On Isabella Fortuna


9 June 03
Toil - Images Of Working Life &  Joan Eardley
Two Exhibitions In One

St Fergus Gallery, Wick -  Until 14 June
St Fergus Gallery Index



9 June 03
Young Kids Visit Dounreay

Castletown Playgroup and Ormlie Pre-School during their recent visit to the Dounreay Visitor Centre.


Thurso West Ladies Choir At The Caithness Music Festival

8 June 03
Halkirk Gala Races

8 June 03
Artsmith Exhibition, Private View Night Is A Huge Success
The first night of the Artsmith 'moving images' exhibition in the Swanson Gallery Thurso, was widely acclaimed as a resounding success. The appreciative audience was treated to a selection of strong and colourful paintings as well as a sensitive and moving multi-media display which brought the whole show to life.......Exhibition At Swanson Gallery Until 28 June

Wick High School Reunion 1977 8 June
Mandy Scudder (nee Miller) has set another reunion rolling.  The date is set for 21 August 2004 in Mackays Hotel.  Send in your old school photos for the new section in the run up to the date.  If you would like to send in a story about your school days we will add it to the section.  Keep up with old friends in the Message Board Reunion page set going by Mandy

 7 June 03
Dunnet Gets Own Tourist Information Point
Dunnet got its own Tourist Information Point when a group gathered for the official opening in the old Dunnet Tearooms.  On a very sunny evening Bill Fernie cut the tape to declare the Information Point open during a cheese and wine party.   The centre will have a wide range of leaflets on Dunnet and Caithness.

7 June 03
Lybster PTA Hit The Sponsored Walk As St Trinian Lookalikes
The Lybster PTA were on their sponsored walk to raise money for school funds on Saturday.  They are walking from Wick to Lybster and were stopping off for lunch at the Smiddy Inn at Thrumster.

7 June 03
77th Birthday For Ex Castletown Woman In Australia

5 June 03
HIAL Managing Director Addresses UK Aviation Industry on Regulatory Burden
The need to strike a reasonable balance between regulatory control, safety standards and airport operations was highlighted at the prestigious Aviation Club of the UK in London today (5 June 2003).   Bob Macleod, managing director of Highlands and Islands Airports Limited addressed the gathering of leading aviation industry figures on the subject of amelioration and compared the regulatory approach in the UK to other countries where regional airports are more cost effective to run..... 

4 June 03

Businesses across the Highlands and Islands are being offered extra help this summer to carry out short-term projects which could produce lasting benefits.  The Shell Technology Enterprise Programme (STEP) matches skilled undergraduates with a wide range of businesses to address a specific need within each company. Students taking part in the programme are skilled in a variety of disciplines, from marketing and product development to IT and accountancy. Each placement lasts for eight weeks, beginning in July 2003. This is the first year that the scheme has been available throughout the Highlands and Islands. Applications to participate in the scheme are being taken now.

4 June 03
25 JUNE 2003

The Highland Council will host a one day seminar "Sustainable Forestry Biomass and Biodiversity" on Wednesday 25 June at the Portland Arms Hotel, Lybster, Caithness.
Expert speakers have been invited from Forward Scotland, Highland Birchwoods, Nordic Enterprise Trust, AMEC, Integrated Energy Utilities Limited, SVS Composting, Forest Enterprise, National Farmers Union, British Geological Survey, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, and the North Highland Leader+ Partnership.

4 March 03
The Great Glen Challenge By Canoe
Several of the Rolls Royce Employees on the Vulcan site are shortly to undertake the Great Glen Challenge, a marathon 65-mile paddle in canoes from Inverness to Fort William through the Great Glen. The paddlers hope to raise several thousand pounds and local firms are being asked to sponsor the marathon. All monies raised will be split evenly between three local charities, the Thurso based Monday Club which aids local ha
ndicapped people, the Epilepsy Partnership in Caithness & Sutherland and the Caithness General Hospital League of Friends....................

4 June 03

No one ever had a tree house like this as a child - larger than your average wooden house with all the latest hi-tech equipment! However, at Ackergill Tower near Wick they have just that.  The finishing touches to the Tree House, situated in the grounds of Ackergill Tower, are now complete and the facility looks set to attract even more business to the area from across the globe.

3 June 03
Caithness Music Festival 2003

1 June 03
The Round Britain Experience -
2500 Mile Yacht Training Course

In Wick harbour today was the 38 foot yacht with a crew on an experience of a lifetime, the chance to circumnavigate the British Isles whilst learning all the skills of yacht cruising.  Participants are learning all the skills needed to become skilled and qualified yachtsmen.


1 June 03
The Co-op community dividend Fund has contributed £2000 towards the cost of the new playground being created at the Bignold Park, wick by the Wick Play Areas Community Group.  David Richard-Jones Caithness member of the Co-op Northern Area committee presented a cheque for the £2000 donation to Allan Tait, Chairman of the Play Areas Group................

1 June 03
Drugs Training For Teachers

Artsmith At Swanson Gallery

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