Caithness Courier headlines for October 1, 2014

A MULTI-MILLION pound investment is being planned by a north company to introduce a new shorter ferry service between Caithness and Orkney. Pentland Ferries wants to establish a route between Gills Bay and Burwick at the south end of South Ronaldsay, in addition to its existing service from the Caithness port to St Margaret's Hope.

A CAITHNESS family have hit out after trains repeatedly careered past their local station on the far north line while passengers were waiting to get off. Scotscalder is a request stop with ScotRail having to be notified in advance when someone wants to get on, or off there. Having done so, the Jackson family claim that the Sprinter has failed to stop at the village station, leaving passengers stranded 30 miles away at Forsinard.

CAITHNESS had "an unprecedented opportunity" to get control over its affairs if there had been a Yes vote in the referendum according to far north MSP Rob Gibson. He was responding to a call by Thurso Highland councillor, John Rosie, for Caithness to be given more administrative and financial powers.

RAIL passengers went loco after their travel plans on the far north line went off the rails on the first day of the Ryder Cup on Friday. But while trains from Inverness to Caithness were cancelled, ScotRail has denied the problems were linked to extra services it had put on to accommodate golf fans going to the high profile event at Gleneagles.

SPECIAL incentives are being offered by NHS Highland to attract qualified doctors to work in Thurso, at a general practice, it has been running for almost two years. The health authority is advertising the "golden hellos" across the country for GPs to work on a permanent basis at its Riverbank Practice in Janet Street.

A PlAN to relocate the Castletown post office to McColls shop, should be outlined in detail to local authority community councillors. That was decided by members who are to invite a representative from the grocery business to attend a meeting and explain what is being proposed.

FIRE crews rushed to Wick town centre at the weekend after fire broke out outside a popular restaurant. Staff at Houston's, called the emergency services when a blaze started in their chip pan extractor system on Saturday afternoon. The damage to the interior of the building was minimal, and its is hoped the chip shop will be able to reopen by the end of this week.

THURSO high School pupils Alanis Sutherland West has just been appointed the Caithness Lord Lieutenant's cadet. The year-long honorary post is selected from among the county's air, sea and army cadets with the incumbent helping Anne Dunnett with her official duties and functions as the Queen's representative in the county.

THURSO High pupil Will Campbell continued his Midas touch when he retained the overall open title at the far north junior piping competition at the weekend. The 13-year-old was among 20 entrants at the event in Thurso High School which ranged from practice chanter classes to the blue riband piobaireachd competition for the most experienced young bagpipers.