Glen Urquhart Community Council

Glen Urquhart Community Council

Minutes of Meeting held on

Monday 28th February 2022 at 7.30pm

in Balnain Hall, Glen Urquhart

All attendees were required to comply with Covid guidelines.

1.     Present: Dianne Fraser (Chair), Pam Lucas, Iain Riddle, Fiona Urquhart, David Ferguson, Dominic Thierry, Bill Smart, Stuart Ross and Val Cooper.

       Also present: Councillor David Fraser, Susan Clark, GURCA, 3 representatives from the Snowman Rally and 7 members of the public.

       Apologies: Councillors Margaret Davidson and Helen Carmichael.

2.       Minutes of the last meeting
The minute of the meeting held on 24th January was approved as a true record (Fiona Urquhart / Dominic Thierry).

3.       Matters arising from minutes

Winter Resilience – GURCA do not have the time to look at this.  It was agreed that this could be picked up again when communications are received from Highland Council in Autumn 2022.  
Village Officer Appointment – Passed to GURCA who do not currently have time to consider this proposal.
Kilmichael Drainage issues – In hand with the construction company.  Community donations to Glen Urquhart Care Centre, Glen Urquhart Childcare Centre and Glen Urquhart Shinty Club were noted and appreciated.
Blairaidh Wind Farm – Comments submitted and the proposal is now being put forward for statutory approval.  Bill Smart has contacted MSPs to request further discussion.  
Ranger Tasks – Lots of work undertaken re litter picking.  Any additional tasks which the community would like to see addressed by the Rangers should be passed to Dianne Fraser.

4.       Treasurer’s Report

David Ferguson provided the following financial report:

In the last month, there has been some activity in our account, details as follows;

Community Council: Balance = £12,438.92 (£7,211.77 is “ring fenced” for Loch Ness Tourism Strategy / Glen Urquhart Place Planning & £1000 was received from Etape for a local Community cause).

No change to balance.

Cnoc an Burraidh: Balance = £879.11 Received £3,610 from National Heritage.  New balance = £879.11 + £3,610 = £4,489.11

Total Balance in our account = £12,438.92 + £4,489.11 = £16,928.03

ETAPE donation for the Community from the September 2021 event was discussed.  It was agreed that this be donated to the Affric Kintail Way.  Action – David Ferguson

5. Police Report

The following report was received in advance of the meeting:

Road Safety - 4/2/2022 a serious 2 vehicle road traffic collision occurred on the A833 due to poor weather conditions. The road was closed for a period of time due to the condition of the occupants.
14/2/2022 male Arrested for drink driving after being observed unsteady on his feet at Scotmid, Drumnadrochit, before entering his vehicle and driving away. Driver located a short distance away and has now been reported to Procurator Fiscal.
Public Protection – 12/2/2022 a vehicle was damaged by having a rock put through its windscreen on Bunloit Road. Enquiries are ongoing.
Drugs / Alcohol Misuse – no incidents of note.
Crimes of Dishonesty – 1/2/2022 a male was arrested in Drumnadrochit and interviewed in relation to illegal possession of Deer, contravention of Deer Scotland Act 1996. A report is now being prepared and submitted to the Procurator Fiscal. This was due to a member of the public calling in with concerns regarding hearing shots during the night. They are thanked for their assistance.
5/2/2022 a theft by shoplifting of alcohol occurred at the Scotmid, Drumnadrochit. 2 x males approx. ages of 16 years old were captured on CCTV, they have not been identified as yet.

Dianne Fraser will respond advising that there is concern locally that instances of poaching are increasing and more patrols in the area would be welcomed.  Action – Dianne Fraser

6. Roads / Drainage

Water Mains Replacement – Issues have been encountered due to faults with the traffic lights.  It was noted that the contractor for the lights was being changed and an emergency contact number for faults will be included on site.  It was noted that the lights at Kilmichael are scheduled to be removed at the end of this week, work on cladding the wall will be undertaken from along the verge side.  It was noted that a reminder about resurfacing works in this area, including the areas of damage out with the traffic lights should be sent to John Taylor.  Action – Dianne Fraser

Water mains replacement works are progressing through the village and the next section will involve 3 way traffic lights at Drum Bridge, it was hoped that these would be set back from the junctions to help ease congestion and allow larger vehicles to manoeuvre the corners.  It was also hoped that the Post Office would re-open soon.


a) A82 Road

Rock Falls – Following recent rock falls David Fraser confirmed that he has requested that Transport Scotland undertake a survey, also ensuring that any fallen rocks are cleared from verges and the area surveyed to ensure no further incidents.

Flooding – There is currently a lot of water both sitting and running on the A82, while it is acknowledged that Traffic Scotland are undertaking drain surveys, in the meantime it would be good to have flood warning signage in place at particular trouble spots.  Action – Dianne Fraser

b) A831 Road – No items discussed.

c) Other Roads

There are still issues with Culnakirk hill, there is currently a lot of water which is running all the way down the hill and on to the A831.  It was agreed that John Taylor be requested to add the clearing of all the drains on Culnakirk to his work schedule.  Action – Dianne Fraser

A reminder that potholes can be reported on the Highland Council website Roadside problems | Roadside problems | The Highland Council

7. Planning Applications

a) Active Applications

22/00189/FUL - Alterations to annexe to provide independent living unit, The Old Manse, Drumnadrochit - noted

22/00386/FUL - Erection of annexe, Dhivach Cottage, Drumnadrochit - noted

22/00403/PIP - Erection of a single storey 'annexe', Rivermill House, Milton, Drumnadrochit – noted

22/00479/FUL - Demolition of store and erection of depot/workshop, stores and staff accommodation, land 130m SW of Shenval Cottage, Glenurquhart – noted

22/00593/FUL - Realignment of access to house site (18/03697/FUL), land 60m NW of Plodda, Lochletter Lodges, Balnain - noted

22/00629/FUL - Siting of ticket kiosk, Castle and Visitor Centre, Urquhart Castle - noted

22/00636/FUL - Conversion of garage roof space to residential annexe, Brooklands, Clunebeg Estate, Lewiston – noted

Consultation Request Notification - Change of use of land for the siting of 3 chalets, ancillary storage building and foul drainage system, Meall Gorm, Culnakirk - noted

Wooden Hut West End Garage – It was agreed to contact Highland Council Development Control to seek clarification on the purpose of the new hut on site.  Action – Iain Riddle

Springfield – The convening of a liaison group is awaited so that community concerns eg surface water drainage, timing, access to commercial units, can be addressed formally.  The final planning consent for the revised application is not yet through and it is likely that one of the conditions will be for a community liaison group.

Loch Ness Homes Site – Revised planning application submitted for a reduction to 37 units, including changes in the road layout and installation of a temporary footpath from the Care Centre to the Scotmid during the first construction phase.  The community liaison group will require to be reinstated for this development.  Loch Ness Homes were motivated to work with the community during the previous build so it is hopeful that this will be the case for this next phase.  The planning application will be on Highland Council website soon and members of the community are encouraged to submit comments online if they so wish.  


8. Community Action Plan

Copies of the plan are available in hard copy and online, and members of the community are encouraged to engage with the consultation process.  GUCC has been invited to submit comments and Dianne will collate responses ,discussion date to be confirmed. Action – Dianne Fraser

9. Flood Prevention Scheme

Overall construction should be finished by the end of March and thereafter landscaping work will be undertaken.  School visits to the site have taken place with very positive feedback received.  

10. Consultations

Outdoor Access Paths – Information received from Ramblers Scotland regarding initiative to map and connect paths.  Gordon Watson has advised that he would like to be involved in this project.  Details to be passed to Carol at Soirbheas to tie in with their project.  Action – Dianne Fraser

11. Correspondence

Energy Action Scotland Online Conference 9th March – noted.

12. AOCB

Snowman Rally – 5th March – 3 Representatives from the Snowman Rally were welcomed to the meeting and provided an overview of the day.  Designated spectator areas will be set up at Balnain and Shenval for both the morning and afternoon stages in the Glen.  Balnain Primary Parent Council will be co-ordinating car parking in the Balnain Forest, Balnain Hall Committee will be co-ordinating car parking at the hall, and the Grant family will co-ordinate at Shenwal.  Catering has been outsourced.   Rally organisers are advised to liaise with Scottish Water directly to request that support is in place in the event of traffic light failure / congestion at Drum Bridge.  There are currently 90 competitor vehicles, plus the additional support vehicles and spectators.  It was suggested that timing and logistical information be added to local Facebook sites.  Representatives were thanked for their attendance and wished a safe and successful event.  Action – Dianne Fraser

Etape – 25th April – Date noted

Ultra X – 7th & 8th May – Date noted.

National Park Creation – Pam Lucas advised of a new Scottish Government initiative to create National Parks in Scotland.  Glen Affric is one of many potential locations and a Working Subgroup of Strathglass Community Council has been set up to review this possibility and prepare for any potential developments.  Pam Lucas had been invited to the first meeting and Dominic Thierry advised that he would be willing to join her in representing GUCC.  It was felt that Kilmorack Community Council might also wish to be involved.   

Scotmid Post Box Relocation – It was agreed that David Ferguson contact PO HQ to advise of imminent work in the area and they may wish to consider a new location for this post box.  Action – David Ferguson

RNLI Fundraising – Loch Ness RNLI are keen to find ways of raising funds for new equipment.  It was noted that the Etape 2022 community donation may be a consideration.  

13. Details of Next Meeting
The next meeting was scheduled for Monday 28th March at 7.30pm in Blairbeg Hall.  

There was no further business and the meeting closed at 9.40pm