Gold Medallists Sought For Blooming Road Verges
The Highland Council wants members of the public to let them know where the most flowery road verges are in their local area with a view of looking to change cutting regimes to maximise the variety of flowers growing there.
Chairman of TEC Services Committee, Councillor Graham Phillips said: "Safety is of course of paramount importance on roads, so cutting regimes will only be altered when it is safe to do so. All the verges along sightlines and at junctions will remain cut short, however there are lots of other areas that could have their cutting regime altered to benefit the wildflowers there, which will in turn the insects that feed on them. We are not asking for a detailed report, just a quick and easy survey of the variety of colours you see as you pass by in a car or walking."
The proposed changes in management are having a single cut with either an early, or a late summer cut and also varying the height of the flail so that low growing species aren't cut but the taller, more competitive species are. The changes in management are likely to be cost neutral, but will benefit the biodiversity of the verges particularly the plants and their pollinators such as; bees, butterflies and moths.
Scotland TranServ who manage the verges on the trunk roads in Highland have altered their cutting regime and some sites such as the A830 at Corpach and the A9 Causeymire, have had fantastic displays of wildflowers in the verges due to this. There has also been a trial on some of the Council maintained roads in Caithness through an initiative between the Caithness Biodiversity Group and The Highland Council, which again has resulted is some great displays of wildflowers on the verges.
Anyone wishing to take part should send the information about the best road verges in their area to the Council's Biodiversity Officer, Jonathan Willet. He said: "Most verges have white and yellow flowers on them, but there are also red, blue, violet and pink that are commonly seen. If you know of verges that are good for orchids or Cuckoo Flower or other flowers that are out earlier in the year then you can let us know about them as well."
Jonathan will need details on the location, either a name or number, the road junction it is nearest to, or a grid reference and a description of the variety of colours or species of flowers found there. He can be contacted by telephoning 01463 702274 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
The Highland Council is advising the public that the second and final phase of ground condition investigations are under way in relation to the Inverness West Link road. Holequest Ltd, who carried out the bulk of the ground Investigation works for the first phase of the investigations, have returned for the second phase and this involves boreholes being installed in the River Ness at the proposed bridge pier locations. ... [full story
Local shops and businesses across Highland are being encouraged to take advantage of a new retailing opportunity – bagged wood pellets for domestic biomass heating systems. The Highland Council is hosting an event in Inverness on Thursday 20 June to encourage an increase in the supply of domestic biomass fuel across the area. ... [full story
The Highland Council’s Leader Councillor Drew Hendry says the Highlands is bucking the trend of declining house building in Scotland, with a very encouraging delivery of new homes throughout the region. Councillor Hendry was speaking in the wake of reports that the building of new homes in Scotland has hit a 65-year low caused by the recession in the construction industry over the past few years. ... [full story
The introduction of the “bedroom tax” has resulted in an increase in arrears and the level of debt of tenants affected. Members of The Highland Council’s Finance Housing and Resources Committee were told that the number of tenants affected by the “bedroom tax” and in arrears had risen from 724 before it was introduced on 1 April to 1,144 on 18 May and the total of arrears had risen from £173,491 to £197,795 in the same period. ... [full story
The Highland Council is sponsoring the Community Land Scotland Conference to be held at Sabhal Mor Ostaig, Sleat, Skye, on Friday and Saturday (7 and 8 June). The keynote conference address will be delivered by the First Minister Alex Salmond, MSP. ... [full story
Highland Councillors are leading the way in Scotland in introducing a scheme which will help reverse the decline in apprenticeships. Members of the Finance Housing and Resources Committee have agreed to contribute £30,000 towards the establishment of a new company which will create a pool of construction apprentices, who will work with multiple contractors over the duration of their apprenticeships. ... [full story
Highland Council has welcomed a successful start to the 2013 cruise ship programme at Scrabster, following the visit on Friday 24th May 2013 of the Adonia, carrying nearly 700 passengers and over 350 crew. Councillor Roger Saxon said “We were delighted to see so many visitors enjoying the sunshine, and either visiting local attractions such as the Castle of Mey or taking advantage of the free shuttle buses between Scrabster and Thurso town centre. ... [full story
The Highland Council’s Caithness and Sutherland Area Committee has approved the structural maintenance programmes for roads and bridges in the area for the coming year. The budgets allocated to Caithness and Sutherland for structural road and bridge maintenance totalled £2.44 million. ... [full story
A further step was taken yesterday towards a new Caithness and Sutherland Local Development Plan – CaS Plan - following a decision made at the Area Committee to issue a Call for Sites over the summer, urging communities to identify land for future development and areas they want to see protected. The Committee members were also looking at ways of taking forward the outcomes from the Wick and Thurso Charrettes, which will help shape the CaS Plan. ... [full story
Councillor Deirdre Mackay, Leader of the Caithness and Sutherland Area committee has welcomed a presentation to the committee yesterday (Monday 20 May) which clearly laid out how the various agencies in Caithness and Sutherland are working together to offset the results of Dounreay decommissioning and ensure that clear pathways are in place to prepare our young people for the future needs and demands of industry and business across all sectors. Reports from North Highland College, Caithness and North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership, Caithness Chamber of Commerce and Skills Development Scotland were brought together for the first time outlining the work that is currently underway to ensure young people reach positive destinations when leaving school, college and university. ... [full story
[Printer Friendly Version]