Caithness And North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership - Update
20th April 2018
Week commencing 16th April 2018
In the week that we celebrated World Heritage Day it is good to see Highland Council advertising for a fixed term post to progress the long-held aspiration that the Peatlands of Caithness and Sutherland become a UNESCO World Heritage area. You can view the job description and background to the appointment at https://www.myjobscotland.gov.uk/councils/highland-council/jobs/world-heritage-project-co-ordinator-114206
Recruitment continues this week for the successor to CNSRP Independent Chair Sir Anthony Cleaver, whose last meeting as Chair of the Partnership's Executive Board will be in June this year after ten years successfully leading CNSRP's programme of work. Adverts have been appearing in the press and on social media, and you can see further details of the job role at http://www.cnsrp.org.uk/independent-chair/ I was also pleased to have a short piece on our recruitment in today's John O’ Groat Journal. The closing date for expressions of interest will be Friday April 27th at 3pm.
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:
Steve Barron, Chief Executive of CNSRP partner Highland Council, was in Caithness this week at the invitation of Thurso & West Caithness ward members (Cllrs Struan Mackie, Karl Rosie, Matthew Reiss and Donnie Mackay). I was delighted to accept their invitation to a round table discussion on the area economy, which was hosted by Scrabster harbour Trust and also drew together Phil Craig (Dounreay Managing Director) and Jennifer Simpson (BBM Solicitors representing Caithness Chamber of Commerce). It was a really useful chance to talk about some of the challenges and opportunities we all recognise, and particularly good to have Phil Craig highlight the continuing pivotal role our Dounreay alliance partners play in the CNSRP.
I was delighted to be invited to a workshop this week with Scottish Government colleagues, focusing on regional inclusive growth. This is a growing area of interest, and I was able to outline the approach being taken in the Caithness and North Sutherland area, emphasising our focus on key economic opportunities and the enabling activities to remove barriers to participation and increasing levels of productivity.
A reminder that CNSRP partner Highlands and Islands Enterprise is currently seeking Board members to serve for a three year period. Further info and how to apply is at http://news.hie.co.uk/all-news/board-members-wanted-for-highlands-and-islands-enterprise/ with a deadline for applications of 24th April.
This and my previous updates are also available to view on the Partnership's Blog on our CNSRP website at
Caithness & North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership
Tel: 01847 805211
Mob: 07717 694055
SpaceHub Sutherland: The team continued with a programme of drop-in events on the ground around the area this week, running drop-in events at the Village Hall in Skerray and the Kinlochbervie Hotel. For details on the project and the programme of events see http://www.hie.co.uk/regional-information/area-information/caithness-and-sutherland/uk-space-port/community-engagement.html Energy & Business Services: As previously highlighted, a meeting was held in Thurso to highlight the newly-established DeepWind Offshore Supply Chain Cluster.
Week Commencing 29 April 2019. Energy & Business Services: As we see positive progress with the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm development, and the development of both Moray East and West projects, a new initiative to support supply chain companies to learn more about opportunities will be held in Thurso on 13th May.
Weeks commencing 8th-22nd April 2019. Energy & Business Services: It was good to see the announcement this week by Dounreay that its Decommissioning Services Framework had gone live.
Week Commencing 8th April 2019 Energy & Business Services: It was good to see this week in the Press & Journal's Energy Voice a piece confirming the transformational impact that the Beatrice Offshore project is having on Wick. It is a timely reminder that although the £2.6Bn project is nearing the end of its construction phase, the economic impacts in the north will continue over the lifetime of the project through the operations base in the restored harbourfront buildings in Wick, which will be home to around 90 workers.
Week Commencing 25th March 2019 SpaceHub Sutherland: The team's weekly presence in Tongue continued this week, and June Love from the team also delivered a presentation on the project to members of the Thurso & Wick Trades Union Council at its meeting this week. I attend all of the Trades Council's meetings, so it was good to hear the unanimously positive reaction to June's update from members (see Communications below for feedback on my discussion with members).
Week commencing 18 March 2019. Energy & Business Services: I'm delighted to see yesterday's news that Restore Digital have announced the creation of 39 new job opportunities in Wick.
Weeks commencing 4th & 11th March 2019. SpaceHub Sutherland: Further community engagement events have taken place this week - a drop-in event was held in Tongue on Wednesday, followed by a further drop-in event in Wick on Thursday.
Week Commencing 25 February 2019 Energy & Business Services: The Beatrice Offshore Windfarm project has passed the 75% mark in its construction phase with the installation this week of the 63rd of 84 turbines The company is also currently advertising for a Wind Turbine Engineer to be based at Wick. http://ssejobs.co.uk/caw/en/job/519979/wind-turbine-engineer Enabling activities: Caithness Chamber of Commerce - in its role as Europe Direct Information Centre (EDIC) for the North Highlands, Orkney and Shetland - hosted a Brexit Business Breakfast in Thurso today (Friday).
Week Commencing 18th February 2019 SpaceHub Sutherland: The SHS team held two more information events this week - in both the Melness Community Centre and the Pentland Hotel, Thurso. I attended the Thurso event, which saw a steady stream of interested visitors (around 100 in total) asking questions about the background to the project and on the progress it is making.
Week commencing 11 February 2019. SpaceHub Sutherland: The SHS team are holding more events this week - in both the Melness Community Centre (Tuesday 19th February, 15.30-20.00) and the Pentland Hotel, Thurso (Wednesday 20th February, 15.30-20.00).
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