Weekly update, 30th June

Energy & Business services:

As our discussions on renewables sector investment opportunities into the area continue to firm up, it is good to see evidence of further enabling work taking place in the area. Pelamis Wave Power (PWP) has begun streaming data on wave conditions at its proposed site at Farr Point in north Sutherland. The work has been carried out for PWP by Thurso’s Environmental Research Institute (ERI) as part of the ongoing work to apply later this year to Marine Scotland for consent to develop a 10MW array at the site.

 

Also progressing well are targeted efforts to attract new businesses to the area from the oil & gas sector. Further positive work carried out in Aberdeen this week may lead to jobs news in the coming weeks.

 

Tourism, Food & Drink:

This weekend sees the second phase of the “Year of Ancient Ancestors” programme being run by Caithness Horizons. Viking Caithness begins tomorrow and runs until 13th July, featuring a range of events including a Viking encampment outside Caithness Horizons.

 

Enabling activities:

As the Glasgow Commonwealth Games approaches, the Queen’s Baton Relay reaches Thurso next week. High Life Highland is organising a series of events to celebrate the Baton Relay’s arrival on Wednesday 9th July: at Thurso Swimming Pool the Thurso Community Sport Hub will be holding a “Come and Try” event from 1.30pm – 3.30pm to coincide with the Baton arriving at 2.40pm.  The baton will then make its way to Gillock Park where at 3pm as part of the Marathon Story Telling Cycle Challenge the celebrated Scottish actor Tam Dean Burn along with Andy Altson from the band Del Amitri and Emma Schad will be reading and singing from the Story of the Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson to coincide with the baton arriving there at 3.30pm. The Baton will return to Caithness the following week, visiting John O’Groats and Wick. Further details for these events are yet to be announced.

 

Communications:

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:

 

  • The latest issue of Scottish Provincial Press’ Energy North supplement was issued last week, and is now online to view. It contains, amongst other pieces, updates on the Oil & Gas Taskforce for the Highlands and Islands and a story on oil & gas that touches on BBC “One Show” coverage of Subsea 7 in Caithness.
  • Delighted to see that Farr High School’s “My Wee Highland Hame” team picked up an award for Best presentation at the UK Final of the Young Enterprise competition, having won the Scottish competition the week before. The team travelled to London with support from staff of Highland Council and Highland Opportunity/ Business Gateway.