Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Great value Unlimited Broadband from an award winning provider  


High Life Highland Chief Executive Announces Retirement

6th March 2019

Photograph of High Life Highland Chief Executive Announces Retirement

High Life Highland's Chief Executive has announced that it is his intention to retire from the charity's top job in the summer.

Ian Murray has been at the helm of one of the Highlands' largest charities since its inception in October 2011 when High Life Highland was created by The Highland Council to deliver and develop the local authority’s culture, learning, sport, leisure and health and wellbeing services. HLH has grown to a £32M annual turnover, employing over 1,300 full and part time staff and supporting over 1,500 volunteers.

Mr Murray first moved to the Highlands 31 years ago to take up the position of Depute Director of Leisure Services with Ross and Cromarty District Council, following six years’ experience in London. When the Highland Council was formed in 1996 he moved to the highland wide remit of Head of Community Learning and Leisure before leading the transition of those services into High Life Highland seven years ago.

Mr Murray is currently the national Chair of Community Leisure UK (Scotland) the members’ association for charitable culture and leisure trusts and will also relinquish this position in the summer.

Speaking about his time with High Life Highland Mr Murray said, "Leading the transition to High Life Highland and the seven years since has been the most challenging, rewarding and enjoyable period in my career.

"Since HLH began, visitor numbers have grown almost three fold; annual income has doubled; reliance on Council funding reduced by half and HLH has been asked by the Council and several community groups to adopt forty additional services, from the formerly community run pools in Bettyhill and Poolewe to more recently the Council’s school music tutor service. I am particularly pleased that HLH has become a trusted partner and ‘go-to’ organisation in so many communities across the Highlands.

Mr Murray concluded, "I have been very fortunate to have been supported throughout by a very motivated, professional and innovative team across everything we do. It has been both a pleasure and privilege to have been part of High Life Highland. Being firmly rooted now in the Highlands, I look forward to seeing HLH continue to evolve and prosper - from the sidelines“

Donald McLachlan, Chair of the Charity Board said, “Ian has steered the management of HLH and supported Directors in their work to a very high standard. His inclusive style has encouraged innovation and trust internally as well as with the local and national partners which support the charity’s work. He has been outstanding in leading the organisation through its initial set up and since, through a substantial period of growth and development - all at a time of very challenging public sector finances.

“The Board of Directors and I are obviously very sorry to hear that Ian will be retiring from the organisation, but we are extremely grateful to him for allowing us enough time to ensure a smooth transition to his replacement at this very busy time for the charity.

The Charity Chair concluded by saying, “Ian has put a whole career into developing and protecting vital cultural and leisure services and I wish him a long and well-deserved retirement when it comes later in the year."

Web site -


Related Businesses


Related Articles

Highland Universal Credit claimants urged to act ahead of annual rent increaseThumbnail for article : Highland Universal Credit claimants urged to act ahead of annual rent increase
Highland tenants claiming Universal Credit are being urged to log on and update their UC claim this April 1st to ensure their entitlement covers their annual rent increase for the year ahead.  Those who fail to do so will face a shortfall in their housing entitlement, putting them at risk of arrears.  
Ban on Vehicle Tyre Disposal at Highland Council Recycling CentresThumbnail for article : Ban on Vehicle Tyre Disposal at Highland Council Recycling Centres
Householders are advised that from the 1st of April 2019 vehicle tyres will no longer be accepted for disposal at Highland Council Household Waste Recycling Centres.   The Highland Council currently disposes of 22% more waste per person than the Scottish average.  
Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan reviewThumbnail for article : Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan review
The Highland Council is raising awareness of the opportunity to help shape future growth and development across the Inner Moray Firth area, and is encouraging anyone living, working, investing and being educated in the area to get involved.   The Council has announced its intention to review the Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan.  
Equality mainstreamed in Highland - Council, Education and LicensingThumbnail for article : Equality mainstreamed in Highland - Council, Education and Licensing
A report that aims to demonstrate the continuing commitments of Highland Council, it's Education Authority and Highland Licensing Board, to advance and mainstream equality into day-to-day work was approved today by Councillors on the Care, Learning and Housing Committee.   Local Authorities, Education Authorities and Licensing Boards are required by legislation to publish a report every 2 years on how they mainstream equality into their work.  
Highland Council to consult on Common Good Asset List
The Highland Council is today (12 March 2019) launching a 12 week consultation giving the community until 5 June 2019 to comment on the proposed contents of the Common Good Fund Asset Register.   Section 102 Community Empowerment (Scotland) 2015 states that before establishing a Common Good Asset Register the Council must first conduct a public consultation on a list of property (buildings, land, artwork, regalia and funds) it is proposing to include.  
Finding out how to foster and adopt made easier in HighlandThumbnail for article : Finding out how to foster and adopt made easier in Highland
People living in The Highland Council area can now find out how to foster and adopt in the comfort of their own homes.   Alison Gordon, Highland Council's Fostering and Adoption Resource Manager explained: "We have created this website to try to make it easier for anyone living in the Highlands who is considering fostering or adoption and we have tried to make the process of applying easier.  
A Connected Highland - Council Agrees 22 strategic improvement prioritiesThumbnail for article : A Connected Highland - Council Agrees 22 strategic improvement priorities
Council has agreed 22 strategic improvement priorities and a Highland Improving Performance Programme for the Council which aims to make the connections across services and communities and drive the improvement.   The proposed strategic improvement priorities are identified from the Council's knowledge of where performance needs to improve and where the Council has already set ambition for improvement.  
Council Programme and Corporate Plan approvedThumbnail for article : Council Programme and Corporate Plan approved
The Council's Programme "Local Voices: Highland Choices" was approved at today's Council meeting 7th March 2019, along with a Corporate Plan which provides the measures and actions required to deliver and monitor the Programme.   The Corporate Plan also underpins the priorities set out in the Council's budget strategy and change programme "A Sustainable Highland" which was approved by Council in February 2019.  
Highland Council demonstrates improving performanceThumbnail for article : Highland Council demonstrates improving performance
Overall the Council's key performance indicators (KPIs) for 2017-18 are performing well with 81% (22) either improving or being maintained.   The principles that underpin the Council's values include that the Council will be fair, open and accountable.  
Highland Council preparations for EU exit
Paper discussed at Highland council today 7 March 2018.   The debate will be available for viewing later at HIGHLAND COUNCIL Date: 7th March 2019 Report Title: Council preparations for EU exit Report By: The Chief Executive 1.  

[Printer Friendly Version]