View Full Version : Fit's in 'e' Groat 'is week?

17-Aug-12, 09:17
John O’ Journal review: August 17, 2012

THE new area committee for Caithness and Sutherland could become “an embarrassment and little more than a talking shop” according to local councillor Willie Mackay. However, two of his colleagues, Alex MacLeod and John Rose, disagreed and claimed the new body has an important role to play and will give the area, local democracy. Mr Rosie said: “It is a step in the right direction.”

PARENTS of a Thurso girl, who goes to school in Bettyhill, are up in arms after being told they will have to start paying for her daily bus transport. Mandy Mackay has blasted Highland Council for introducing £10-a-week charge for her daughter to attend Farr Secondary. While the school is outwith her catchment area, Mrs Mackay believes the family should not have to pay anything, as the primary and secondary schools in Bettyhill are located in the same building.

ANOTHER Caithness petrol station has bitten the dust after 22 years in business. The pumps at Richards Garage in Ormlie Road, Thurso, closed this week – 18 months after the Wick side of the business collapsed. The firm, which is still offering a car hire facility and workshop, may soon join two other Thurso filling stations on the market, according to company director Alister Richard. The rising price of fuel and lower prices at the Tesco superstore in Wick, as well as increased running costs, have been blamed for the closure.

A DECISION by Stagecoach to terminate its X99 evening services between Caithness and Inverness, has been criticised as “ a knee-jerk reaction”. The attack was made by Landward Caithness councillor, Alex MacLeod, this week after the bus company confirmed the services will not operate from October until April. Low passenger numbers were blamed for the decision.

PLANS are at an early stage to introduce a new sailing event to Caithness following the success of Harbourfest at Wick. The town’s harbour authority confirmed it is proposed to stage an annual regatta at the port and hopes to make its debut next year. The idea was inspired with the successful redevelopment of Wick marina in recent years, along with events such as Harbourfest which drew thousands of visitors to the port.

John O’ Groats is accustomed to waving off adventurous fundraisers by foot or vehicle, but rarely does it witness the start of someone shimmying the length of mainland Britain. Ben Hammond is attempting to do exactly that as he aims to get to Land’s End by dancing the whole way from Caithness. His unique mission has been labelled Dance Britain for Burma as he claims to raise at least £200,000 for a number of charities in the war-torn country.

WICK has the second highest percentage of people per head of population claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance in the Highlands, it has emerged. It comes as figures revealed youth employment across Scotland rose for the 21st consecutive month. The statistics came to light when Highland Council’s planning environment and development committee held an employability service update, in Inverness, discussing its Youth Employment Action Plan.

Britain may have had its most successful Olympics in living memory but sport stores in Caithness have not seen a positive knock-on-effect on sales. Predictions that the biggest sporting event the country has ever held, would trigger an increase in participation have not come true, so far, according to far north retailers. However, staff said they are hopeful the games will have sparked interest among youngsters in taking up more physical activity and they will see the benefit in the future.

B-Fest 2013 is a go! The two-day music extravaganza at the Riverside in Wick, will return next year following the massive of the third festival at the weekend. Organiser Ryan Cook said this year’s event was the biggest and best yet and there is not stopping it now.