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Caithness News Bulletins March 2003

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DIVE CENTRE ON THE CARDS FOR WICK 19 March 03

Divers in Caithness have taken the first step towards realising plans to build a Dive Centre in Wick thanks to Caithness and Sutherland Enterprise (CASE)

CASE has awarded the Far North Sub Aqua Club a funding package totalling 3,147 - which includes over 1,500 from the European-funded Community Economic Development (CED) programme - towards phase one of the project.

The Far North Sub Aqua Club is leasing a plot of land from Wick Harbour Trust where it plans to build a Dive Centre, which will provide storage space for equipment and a classroom facility for diving courses.

Support from CASE for the first phase of the development will help the Club meet the cost of architects drawings, which the Club requires to seek planning permission for the Dive Centre.

Diving off the coast of Caithness and Sutherland is becoming increasingly popular, attracting underwater archaeologists, photographers and marine biologists as well as those who just dive for fun.

With a membership of 21, the Far North Sub Aqua Club is keen to encourage as many people as possible in the community to try diving and the new Dive Centre will also cater for visiting divers to the area.

Diving Officer of the Far North Sub Aqua Club, Jennifer Clyne said: "We are grateful to CASE for their assistance with our project. A Dive Centre will provide facilities locally for recreational diving and for diver training from Ocean Diver through to Advanced Diver. We are also pleased to be involved in the re-development of Wick Harbour."

Eann Sinclair, head of Strengthening Communities at CASE said: "The development of a Dive Centre in Wick will have clear economic benefits for the area with figures showing that diving is becoming an increasingly popular past-time.  The attractiveness of the waters off the coast of Caithness and Sutherland and suitable facilities, like a Dive Centre, will encourage more divers to the area.

"The CED programme places strong emphasis on the development of green tourism in particular and sub-sea tourism has yet to realise its full potential in the far north."

Contact Far North Sub Aqua
Anyone over 14 years and over who would like more information should contact Jennifer Clyne on 01955 604883 or email jclyne6053@aol.com

Caithness has two Diving Clubs the other being Caithness Diving Club

Far North Try Dive Evening October 2002