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June 2011

Minutes of the Dunnet and Canisbay Community Council Meeting held in May Hall on Wednesday 8th June 2011


Members: John Green (Chair)

Keith Muir (Secretary / Treasurer)

Chris Hobson (Vice-Chair)

Eric Green (member)

Tom Sayles (Member)

In attendance: Alex Macmanus (Highland Council Official)

17 members of the public

2. Apologies

Linda Bingham (member)

Robert Coghill (Highland Councillor)


John Scott and two of his colleagues from Scottish and Southern Energy gave a presentation on the plans to accommodate the expected power generated by the renewable energy tidal devices due to be deployed in the Pentland Firth in the Inner Sound and off Duncansby Head. There will be a new substation built - probably near Phillips Mains farm - together with a new power line on double wooden poles from the substation all the way to Dounreay to link into the high-voltage lines to carry the power south.

Full details of the proposal are available at www.sse.com/gillsbay


The Chair decided to take this item first as the majority of the public had come to air their concerns about a proposal to build 8 new houses on a site in Scarfskerry.

The opinions of all present were noted, and added to earlier representations received by email, post and telephone from concerned residents. It was proposed by Eric Green  that the Community Council write to the planning authorities and report the opposition of the local community to this development, and that proposal was agreed Nem Con.

5. Minutes of the May Meeting: proposed by Chris Hobson seconded by John Green, duly adopted.

6. Matters Arising: 

Auckengill Signpost: Following representations the Council explained that at the time the sign was put up it did not obstruct the gateway into the field, but that the farmer had subsequently shifted his gate; and if he wanted the sign moved he would have to pay for the work.

7. Treasurer's Report: Current balance stands at £1,454.05 with no significant outstanding payments to be made.

8. Community Planning.

Koreen MacDougall of the Caithness Partnership joined the meeting and distributed a pro-forma Community Action Plan to be circulated to the community for ideas to come forward to incorporate into the plan. Koreen stressed that actions identified in the Action Plan were likely to have a better profile when it comes to attracting funding, especially from public agencies. She agreed to collate any suggestions coming forward from the community and help in the preparation of the Plan.

9. Constitution and Standing Orders

It was proposed that the Community Council  formally adopt the standard Constitution, Standing Orders and Code of Conduct as prepared by Highland Council.

Proposed by John Green; Seconded by Keith Muir; passed unanimously and duly adopted.


10. AOCB

Bus Service: Eric Green reported that since the new timetable has been introduced the service around upper Gills has been withdrawn. The secretary has sent an email to the Stagecoach company to raise this matter but had no response. There is to be a public meeting with Stagecoach  in Dunbeath Village Hall on 24th June at 10.30 and it was agreed that this matter should be raised at that meeting.

Traffic Calming: A resident of East Mey brought up the issue of vehicles travelling at excessive speed through the East Mey area, and further comment was raised about a similar problem at Huna. Alex Macmanus agreed to raise these matters with the appropriate department to see if warning signs or some other traffic calming measure could be introduced; and it was agreed to ask the community police officer to look into this matter.

Public Waste Bins: Since the fortnightly collections of bins has been introduced, there has been a problem with some of the public bins, specifically at Dunnet Sands, at the Seal Colony at Gills, et al. Alex Macmanus agreed to take this up with the Council to see what solutions could be offered - possibly bigger bins at these busy locations if more frequent emptying is not possible.

11. Next Meeting: There will be a break in July, and the next meeting will be on Wednesday 10th August in the Dunnet Hall. It is expected that Meygen (the developer of the Inner Firth tidal energy site) will attend to update the community on their plans.







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