Spean Bridge, Roy Bridge and Achnacarry Community Council

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Spean Bridge, Roy Bridge and Achnacarry Community Council held its March meeting last week at Kilmonivaig Church Hall.

Agenda items included a briefing by Woodland Trust Scotland about plans for the Loch Arkaig Pine Forest (a report was published in the Lochaber Times on this topic last week).

Other agenda items included:

  • Highland Council: The roads officer has addressed all the outstanding issues and is in dialogue with the Roy Bridge Gardens volunteers about their drainage issue. Littering remains an issue in the community and everyone is asked to do their bit to keep villages and the surrounding area litter free. Particular concerns were expressed about contractor’s signs that have been abandoned on the B8004 and B8005 and fly tipping adjacent to the Achnabobane link road.
  • BEAR and Transport Scotland: So far there has been no confirmation about the improvements to the trunk road system reported last month in the community council area. In particular the resurfacing planned for the A82 south of Spean Bridge, at the Cattle Ranch, and the drainage issues on the hill to the north of Spean Bridge all scheduled to start this month. It was noted, too, that the long-awaited A86 Inverroy Safety Report has still not appeared. The community council has asked for an urgent update, as well as adding concerns about potholing on the A86, at the junction of the A82 and A86 and an erosion of the culvert at Aonachan Crossroads beside the A82 which is impacting on the trunk road verge.
  • Community Benefit –The first opportunity to make application to the main Stronelairg Wind Farm Fund ended on March 4.  It is believed there are five applicants whose proposals will be considered on April 29. The first quarter’s applications for micro grants will close on March 31 and will be considered in a private meeting as agreed in our memorandum of understanding with SSE after the conclusion of the monthly meeting on April 2.
  • Community minibus offer: A report on this topic was published in Lochaber Times last week.
  • The Lochaber Health and Social Care Redesign Steering Group – The minutes of the February 21 meeting had been circulated. The important first draft of the clinical model had only been forwarded the day before and there appears little progress to report. The community council feels NHS Highland really needs to increase the momentum to deliver a new Belford Hospital.
  • There has been a request from a member of the public to name the street from the A86 to the shinty pitch in Spean Bridge after the late Councillor Billy MacLachlan and this was investigated by the chairman. Although he felt it would be a popular choice, the cost to change the street name was beyond the current financial resources of the community council. However, the member of the public has found a benefactor who was willing to fund the proposal and the chairman will contact Highland Council and ask them to start the procedure required.
  • Treasurer’s Report: It was agreed to make a £50 donation to the Foodbank in appreciation of the catering this year, and with the financial year coming to an end, £60 has been paid for the rent of the hall. The community council also received £5,000 from SSE from the 2019 Micro Grant Awards leaving a current balance of £6,039.73 – but £5,000 is restricted to SSE micro grants.

The next meeting will be on April 2 in Kilmonivaig Church Hall at 7pm.