Scotland's Chief Statistician has published the Aggregate Estimates for Total Income from Farming (TIFF) for 2008 and the Estimates of Average Net Farm Income (NFI) for 2007-08. The statistics show that total income from farming decreased by £11.9 million in 2008 to £629.6 million, a fall of 1.8 per cent over the previous year before inflation is taken into account.
The massive economic potential of marine renewable energy in the North of Scotland will be mapped out for the first time. The Scottish Government has commissioned a Marine Spatial Plan for the Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters.
Long serving Highland Councillor for Inverness, Jimmy MacDonald, has died after a long illness at the age of 60. A native Gaelic speaker from Baleshare in North Uist, Councillor MacDonald joined local government in 1986 when he was elected to the former Highland Regional Council.
The Highland Council has agreed to accelerate its spending on the facelift of Thurso pedestrian precinct to complete the £300,000 project by Easter. The six-week first phase of the reconstruction of the pedestrian-friendly area was completed at the end of last year.
In recognition of the valuable work Social Enterprise companies in the Highlands do in diverting waste from landfill sites, The Highland Council has confirmed its continued support by allocating over £1.1 million of grant funding for the next two years. In Highland currently 7 groups receive grant funding based on an agreed amount for every tonne recycled plus the equivalent waste disposal cost for every tonne recycled.
Communities and developers are being invited to have their say in shaping future policy aimed at improving open space in new residential developments in the Highlands. A consultation, organised by The Highland Council's Planning and Development Service, runs until Friday 20 March.
The Centre for Rural Health in Inverness, and Distance Lab, a digital media research institute based at Horizon Scotland in Forres, are to work together to develop a new communication system that will enable suffers of chronic lung disease to participate in group rehabilitation exercises in the comfort of their own homes. The research has been funded by a £63,000 grant from Chest, Heart & Stroke Scotland (CHSS).
A free event advising on renewable energy for businesses is to be held in Inverness on Tuesday, February 3 2009. The focus of the event is on-site renewable energy for business.
An essential guide to benefits and money advice has been produced by The Highland Council. The booklet is free and available at Council Service Points and online via the home page of the Council's web site: www.highland.gov.uk.
The Kandahar Club races each year in Switzerland at the world famous Murren Inferno downhill ski race - the longest downhill race in the world. This year the North Highland's Mey Selections Barrogill has sponsored the Hulse-Palmer Cup which is awarded to the three Kandahar teams with the best improved times in the Inferno race, and to the member of the Club with the best individual performance.
DINGWALL, Dingwall & Highland Marts, (January, 28th) sold 3,434 store sheep of all classes. Lambs (2,285) averaged £51.74 and sold to £80 gross for Beltex crosses from Aberchalder Estate, Gorthleck.
The first in a series of free business clinics, providing practical advice for local firms throughout the Highlands and Islands, takes place in Kirkwall next week (Wednesday, February 4). Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has organised the clinics as part of its package of measures to help the region's businesses address the current economic downturn.
Pupils at Holm Primary school, Inverness will be able to monitor how much of the energy they use is powered by the sun now a new photo-voltaic system has been installed on the roof which will generate clean and free renewable energy to the school They will also be able to carry out experiments and learn more about solar power generation thanks to a special student kit which was handed over to the school by Chairman of the Planning, Environment and Development Committee, Councillor Ian Ross. He said: "A priority of the Council is to look at our own estate and identify ways we can cut down on the amount of energy our buildings use.
DINGWALL, Dingwall & Highland Marts Ltd., (January, 27th) sold 101 prime cattle and 1154 prime sheep. Prime bullocks (51) averaged 166.6p (-1.0p) and sold to 180p per kg and £1,292.85 gross.
Highlands and Islands Enterprise, in partnership with the Highland Employers Coalition are organising a series of short workshops throughout the region. The workshops are designed to focus around diversity in the workplace and are particularly relevant to small businesses and organisations who may be concerned about: · Retaining their best people ? · Recruiting the right staff ? · The legal risks arising from employment ? · Staff absences increasing? · Staff stress? · Not being seen as an employer of choice ? · Opportunities to open up new markets ? Developing a diverse workforce can help with all of these situations! Whether you have started to develop equality policies or just don't know where to start - this event is for you.
Plans for a £1 million upgrade of Wick High School have been unveiled to staff and parent representatives. It is hoped that work can start during the summer following a competitive tendering process on a 25-week contract to extend the dining facilities and upgrade and extend the gymnasium changing facilities.
LOCHMADDY, Dingwall & Highland Marts Ltd., (January, 22nd) sold 116 store cattle, 2 breeding cattle, 1 OTM cattle. Bullocks (61) averaged 177.7p and sold to 211.7p per kg for a 300kg Limousin from 22 Balemore, Lochmaddy and £735 gross for a 390kg Limousin from 1 Knockline, Bayhead.
Businesses in the Highlands and Islands have been making good use of a new telephone adviceline set up to provide tailored expertise during the current economic downturn. Launched on January 5 the advice line is one of seven initiatives set up by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) aimed at helping businesses in the region through the current trading period.
LEADER funding workshops are being arranged by Caithness Voluntary Group for venues in Wick and Thurso at the end of this month. The sessions, which are free of charge, are being presented by Highland LEADER development officer Fiona Cameron.
A north-east farmer was fined £2000 for allowing diesel to enter surface water drains and into a tributary of the River Ythan causing pollution of the river. Mr Roger Glennie from the Hillhead of Ardo Farm, Methlick, Ellon pled guilty today (21 January 2009) to a contravention of legislation designed to protect the water environment.