Caithness And North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership Update
11th February 2017
Week Commencing 6 February 2017.
The "Jobs and How to Get Them" event was held in Thurso last Saturday (see my online blog and https://www.facebook.com/caithnessjobs/ for event photos). It was very well attended by a range of organisations, at least 50% of whom were offering current employment/ apprenticeship opportunities. And it was good to see that members of the public came from different age groups, and included school and college students as well as unemployed and employed people keen to find out more about current and future employment. I was also delighted to see colleagues from the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm project at the event for the first time, and to hear encouraging news of their plans for an Operations & Maintenance base at Wick harbour.
Next week sees the public opening of the NDA Nuclear Archive in Wick. The complex beside Wick John O'Groats Airport will be operated by Restore UK, and also hosts the Caithness Archive, providing 25 long-term full-time equivalent jobs.
Good to read about the imminent start of work on the short stretch of the B876 at Killimster in Caithness, which has been an enabling project for CNSRP because of its strategic importance to the area's economy. The work is led by CNSRP partner Highland Council.
As part of an ongoing process of helping communicate progress with the delivery of aspects of our economic transition programme CNSRP's partners work together to generate news stories for local, regional and national media. I also speak on a regular basis to individuals and organisations across the area to update on progress. This week:
Congratulations to Wick High School's Ellora James, who this week won the "One To Watch" award at Everywoman’s "Women in Technology" awards ceremony in London. At just 16 years old Ellora is MD of the Envirocache business (http://envirocache.co.uk/) set up through the Apps for Good programme run at Wick High School under the supervision of Chris Aitken. The awards were sponsored by FDM Group and featured shortlisted women from a range of major companies such as IBM, Vodafone, Sage and American Express, making Ellora’s success all the more impressive!
Caithness & North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership
Tel: 01847 805211
Mob: 07717 694055
Week commencing 25 September 2017 Tourism, Food and Drink: · Last weekend saw the staging of the annual "Taste North" event organised at Ackergill Tower by Venture North with support from a range of organisations including CNSRP partner the NDA. Despite the less than ideal weather, the event attracted a record number of visitors (around 1,000), and a range of food, drink and tourism companies from across the north, and featured a range of activities and demonstrations, including masterclasses with renowned chef Nick Nairn.
Week commencing 11 September 2017 Energy & business services: The UK Government's department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) this week announced its latest round of awards through the "Contracts for Difference" mechanism, in which there was mixed news for area projects. The Moray Offshore Windfarm (East) development consented for the Moray Firth - received an award, whilst the MeyGen tidal energy project did not.
Week Commencing 4 September 2017 Enabling Activities: As I highlighted last week CNSRP partners Highland Council and NDA have supported Scottish Government to carry out investigation work into the improvement of the A9 Trunk Road at Berriedale Braes, which aims to improve the notorious hairpin bend. The notice, which outlines construction costs of approximately £9 million, invites prospective bidders to formally apply to participate in the procurement to construct major improvements to this important route.
Week Commencing 14th August 2017 Energy & business services: Caithness Chamber of Commerce this week ran an event sponsored by CNSRP partner Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). The main speaker was Bill Cattanach of the Oil & Gas Authority (OGA), with introductory presentations by myself and Sandy Mackie of Scrabster Harbour Trust.
Weeks commening 31st July and 7th August Energy & business services: As I highlighted recently, the company behind the proposed floating offshore windfarm demonstrator off the coast near Dounreay recently went into into administration. Administrators French Duncan have opened a "data room" for potential buyers.
Week commencing 26 June 2017. Energy & business services: I met Louise Smith of Caithness Renewables last week, and heard about her current role as an adviser to the "Resource Efficient Scotland" programme being run by Zero Waste Scotland on behalf of Scottish Government.
Update Week commencing 19 June 2017 Tourism Food & Drink: · CNSRP partner Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) this week published a baseline report on the economic impact of the North Coast 500 route which covers the whole of the north mainland. The report highlights the impact of the route's global profile, and suggests that 200 new jobs could be created as a result.
Week commencing 12th June 2017. Energy & business services: The offshore construction phase of the Caithness- Moray programme to enhance the north's electricity distribution grid has reached a significant milestone with the laying of the first sections of the subsea cable across the Moray Firth.
Following the end of the two recent election periods, congratulations to all our new and returning Highland Councillors, and to our new MP. This is a short message to update you on activities relating to the Caithness & North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership (CNSRP) during the two election periods.
Week 27 March 2017 Energy & business services: Following last week's news that it has received consent from Scottish Government for its proposed Dounreay Tri floating offshore wind project off the north Caithness coast, this week Hexicon has announced a €45 million funding boost which will allow it to begin construction on the project. http://renews.biz/106475/hexicon-swells-dounreay-coffers/ The offshore construction phase of the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm project also progresses, with the arrival off Caithness of the huge vessel Stanislav Yudin.
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