Glen Urquhart Community Council

Glen Urquhart Community Council

Minutes of Meeting held on

Monday 22nd March 2021 at 8pm

via conference call

Due to the ongoing situation with Covid-19, and in line with government guidelines, the GUCC business was discussed and agreed via conference call.  Until restrictions are lifted the Community Council will aim to produce a monthly agenda and report using the standing timetable. If anyone wishes to join the next meeting via conference call please contact any member of the CC.

1.       Present: Dianne Fraser (Chair), Pam Lucas, Fiona Urquhart, David Ferguson and Val Cooper

          Also present: Councillors David Fraser and Margaret Davidson, Fraser Mackenzie, Nicky MacLennan and Iain Riddle.

Apologies: Stuart Ross, Dominic Thierry, Stuart McLeay and Councillor Helen Carmichael.

Dianne Fraser welcomed everyone to the meeting.

2.       Election of Chair

David Fraser was congratulated on his new role as Councillor for Ward 12.  Nominations were sought for Chair of Glen Urquhart Community Council, a proposal for Dianne Fraser was made by Pam Lucas and seconded by Fiona Urquhart.  Dianne accepted this position on a trial basis with the support and input from existing members.  Dianne and David Fraser would make arrangements for a handover, including the generic address.  David Ferguson would also liaise with Dianne in due course with regards to any financial matters, including signatures.  

3.       Minutes of the last meeting
The minute of the meeting held on 22nd February 2021 was approved as a correct record (Pam Lucas / Fiona Urquhart).

4.       Matters arising from minutes

Item 3 – Fly Tipping Issues – Dominic Thierry had followed up this issue and a response had been received.  It was however noted that local Councillors had put money into a Tourism Strategy and this project would include discussions with the Tourism Officer and Waste Manager to discuss what the implications for Ward 12, and in particular the sites which are problem spots for littering and overnight parking of campers.  It was agreed to put together a list of problem spots over the next 10 days, and pass this information to David Fraser and Margaret Davidson to progress.  Action – All

Item 3 – To liaise with Tulloch regarding works to the Old Kilmore car park.  Action – David Fraser

Item 3 – Springfield – It was noted that the finalising of Section 75 should take place in the next week, and thereafter it was hoped to hear from the Planners on what has been agreed, a Liaison Group will then be set up to begin to move things forward.  

Item 6 – Soirbheas – Fraser Mackenzie reported Soirbheas had agreed a form of words at their last Directors meeting (below) – and these required the approval of both Glen Urquhart and Strathglass Community Councils.

 Firstly, ensure the developer is reminded that any meeting with Soirbheas has no bearing on and should not be represented as community support for a development and remind them that Scot gov guidance states that such discussions on community benefit are not considered a material consideration in any planning application.  

 Soirbheas will progress engagement on “Standard Community Benefit” as defined in the Scottish Government Good Practice guide. 

 Soirbheas may not commit to developing any “Shared Ownership Options” unless the Community Councils have informed Soirbheas of their position regarding the development and sanctioned such an involvement.   

 Regarding the last point, my understanding is that Soirbheas would need the ‘green light’ from both CCs to progress Shared Ownership Options, unless the development is clearly situated in one CC area and that CC is supportive of progressing Shared Ownership Options and the development does not impact the other CC area.  

    Soirbheas would remain fully neutral throughout on all planning matters. 


It was agreed that Dianne Fraser would respond to Jimmy Murray’s (Soirbheas Director) update email on this matter.  Action – Dianne Fraser

Item 9 - Loch Ness Homes – David Fraser advised that he had received an update from Loch Ness Homes, they hoped to complete Phase 3 (the current phase) by the end of June and will then make a decision about what they do next.

Item 11 - Playparks – Margaret Davidson advised that bark has been delivered locally to parks and they have all been reopened except for Kilmore which requires woodwork repairs / replacement.  

Item 12 - Flood Prevention – David Fraser advised that Highland Council have written to the neighbours and are trying their best to put out a contract that would allow the section downstream of the bridge to progress this year, as well as the section in Don Fraser’s field and up at Kilmichael.  The contracts are now awaited to see if the works can be delivered within the proposed timescales.  Residents are being kept informed

5.       Treasurer’s Report

David Ferguson provided a financial report, there had been no transactions since the following meeting so the balance is unchanged.  

Community Council balance = £9,101.91

Cnoc an Buraidh balance = £20,144.27

Ttotal balance = £29,246.18  

6.       Police Report

No report available.  

Pam Lucas requested that anyone in contact with the local officers mention to them that the nice weather has seen an increase in motorbikes on the Glen road – would appreciate a presence as a reminder to them about speeding.

7.       Consultations

A)       Local Development Plan

Two extra meetings have taken place although these did not involve a lot of engagement from the community despite the recent efforts with publicity and newsletter.  It was agreed that Dianne Fraser, Pam Lucas, Fiona Urquhart and Dominic Thierry would meet on Tuesday 30th March to provide a GUCC response to the Plan.  One of the advantages of engaging in this exercise is that it helps bring out what is in the Local Plan, and aides the process for planning proposals which comes to GUCC in the future.  This exercise will be ongoing for a couple of years, and so there will be opportunity for other members of GUCC to get involved at different stages of the process.  Action – Dianne Fraser + PL / FU / DT

B)       Transport Scotland Strategic Transport Projects Review 2

Members were disappointed by the size of this document, which was not user friendly and made working with it and providing a response which would do it justice a near impossible task.  It was agreed therefore that GUCC would not respond to this consultation.  

8.        Roads / Drainage

A)       A82 Road

Members discussed the letter which David Fraser had received from Transport Scotland in  response to the many A82 issues which had been raised.  While members were pleased to have received a response, there was agreement that the commitment to address issues was disappointing.  For Lewiston GUCC would have hoped for flashing 30 signs, rather than just painted road roundel markings.  The Clansman traffic survey had been undertaken with a view to reducing the speed limit in that area but this was not going to be progressed.  It was disappointing too that north bound laybys would not be considered.  It was agreed that Dianne Fraser, David Fraser and Margaret Davidson would meet to discuss this in more detail, to decide which items could be progressed by GUCC and which by Councillors, to plan strategically, and thereafter request a meeting with David Devine, Transport Scotland.  It was agreed also to invite representatives from Fort Augustus CC to be included in discussions.  Action – Dianne Fraser / David Fraser / Margaret Davidson

B)       A831 Road

Members were pleased to note that a lot of work had been undertaken on the A831 and A833 to repair potholes.  Margaret Davidson advised that there were now more personnel in the road squad as well as an increased budget which has made big improvements.  Surface dressing and re-surfacing works to some areas are planned for the summer.  

9.        Planning Applications

A)       Active Applications

21/00525/FUL - Alterations, extension of building to form ancillary accommodation, Old Schoolhouse, Bunloit, Drumnadrochit - noted

21/00594/FUL - Temporary siting of catering van, Fiddlers Bar, Drumnadrochit - noted

21/00843/PNO - Form a private FLS way, land 3885m SE of Glasha, Tomich, Cannich - noted

21/00904/FUL - Erection of a shed, Uibhist, Milton, Drumnadrochit – Agreed response that any change of use needs to be accompanied by another planning application.  Action – Fiona Urquhart

21/00776/FUL – Change of use of former RNLI building to residential, Temple Pier Boat House, Drumnadrochit - noted

21/01168/FUL - Erection of replacement extension to house, The Rowans, Balmacaan, Drumnadrochit – noted

B)      Highland Housing Alliance / Old Shop Site

There has been a change in plans for this site, and it is expected that the contract for the demolition of the old shop will be signed within the next few days.  At this stage we do not know that any future plans might look like but it is anticipated that a proposal will be submitted to planning in a relatively short timescale given the amount of time Highland Housing Alliance will feel has been lost during the community negotiations process.    

10.      Community Action Plan / Place Plan

It was agreed to leave this item on the agenda for the time being, and to concentrate on submitting the response to the Local Development Plan in the first instance.  It was agreed that it would be good to tie in with neighbouring community councils to formulate a joined up response, and to also include the Tourism Plan in these discussions.   David Fraser will pass CC contact details to Dianne Fraser for this process.  Action – David Fraser

11.       Correspondence

No items not already circulated.

12.       AOCB

Bunloit Road – Margaret Davidson advised that she had recently had an on site meeting to discuss issues of concern relating to the Bunloit road, these included the deterioration of the road surface in some areas (the middle section was resurfaced most recently and is in good condition), the need for better passing places, and strengthening of the edges in some spots.  It had been agreed that a clear plan of what work needs attended to should be made, and then these could be addressed when planning applications for the area come forward.    Complaints had been received about the lack of gritting over the winter however this had been undertaken, but sometimes access had been problematic due to cars being stuck on the roadside. Piles of grit had been left for residents to use, and always during very cold spells the main roads will receive priority.  There was mixed reports from residents however, with some being content with the service provided.  Iain Riddle, Bunloit resident, confirmed that he would work to prepare a list of problem spots and areas for improvement.  Action – Iain Riddle

Soirbheas – Nicky MacLennan advised that Soirbheas have extended their support to businesses with a Training Grant which will be available from 1st April. This new grant is open to employers / businesses based in the Soirbheas area to help towards covering essential training costs and / or salary costs while training is being undertaken. The primary aim of the Employee Training grant is to support businesses to adapt and recover from the impact of Covid-19, enabling staff to be re-skilled or undertake training to provide new services.  The Soirbheas Community Support Fund is continuing.  They have allocated funds to address urgent community needs that have arisen as a direct result of Covid-19.  Funding of up to £1,000 per application / group is available, with groups able to apply again in the new financial year.  Groups may be eligible for this fund if they have started to provide activities or services to support the community through the coming months or have an idea but are unable to source funding or support.  Soirbheas also offer Development Days to community groups, where Soirbheas staff provide their time to help develop projects.  Contact Carol or Nicky for further information and see their website

13.      Details of Next Meeting
The next meeting was scheduled for Monday 26th April at 8pm, arrangements to be confirmed.  

There was no further business and the meeting closed at 9.35pm.