Ward business, car parks, the Local Place Plan, Sandown, and what matters to you ...
Nairn ward business meeting
I don’t think I’ve talked about this before but as well as the formal Nairnshire Area Committee meetings which take place four times a year your ward councillors also have a ward business meeting about once a month.
Area committee is where things are formally decided by councillors and they take place in public (and indeed the next one, at 10:30am on 15th November, will actually be in person for the first time since Covid arrived so you can come along and watch if you’re so inclined, more on that later).
Ward business meetings are in private and it’s where we catch up with what the council has been doing locally and it’s also where officers ask what we think about issues on which they, not we, have the decision (which is the majority of small issues, which they handle under “delegated powers”).
So this month for example we discussed a lot of things including:
work along the sea front by the council’s active travel team including improving access to East Beach and better cycle parking at The Links;
various promising applications for grants which are in the gift of Highland Council and related bodies;
officers’ thinking on the planned Common Good Engagement Committee which will let the people of Nairn get more involved in how we manage the Nairn Common Good;
problems with the planned leasing of Grant Street workshop and yard (which is a Common Good asset).
We also discussed the new Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan with officers and made our views very clear on what we are looking for if we’re going to approve it at the next Area Committee meeting.
Town centre car park road closure
One of the things that came up at the ward business meeting was that one of the roads inside the Nairn town centre car park has been blocked. This effectively splits the car park into two sections: the bit east of the new CAB/flats (the “library car park”) which only has access (especially annoying when exiting) via traffic lights and the larger western part up to the CoOp, which has separate entrance and exit roads.
This blockage means that if you can’t find parking in one half of the car park you have to go back out onto the A96 to get to the other half, with the added complication of the traffic lights if you began in the eastern area.
Apparently this was all in the plans submitted for the new CAB/flats and really should have been picked up by ward councillors at the planning committee when it came for approval (before my time I should make clear!) but sadly it wasn’t.
We ward councillors are now asking officers what can be done to reverse this, with the suggestion that a raised pavement might be appropriate at that location as this was allegedly done to make pedestrian/cycle access to the high street from the flats safer.
Local Place Plan
The first public steps are finally starting towards creating a Local Place Plan for Nairn with a public meeting being held this Thursday at 7:30pm at the Community Centre.
Sadly I only got notice of this myself very late in the day and so I won’t be able to make it but I look forward to hearing what comes out of it.
Sandown land lease
As you know by now I’m sure the Nairn Common Good Fund owns arable land on both sides of the A96 on the west side of Nairn and the Fund is now seeking a new commercial tenant for that land from January 2023. For more details see this web page.
What matters to you?
The Highland Council’s Administration are keen to hear from residents and communities across Highland as they develop priorities for the new Council Programme. Members of the public are invited to view the draft priorities and respond to a survey at which is open until 11th November. For more details visit this web page.