Caithness Courier headlines for April 27, 2016

MOVES are under way to lessen flooding problems caused to property and land around Wick harbour during storms. Hopes are high that a seven-figure funding package can be firmed up to install a tidal gate to help better protect the port from tidal surges during spells of extreme weather.

DUNNET BAY Distillers Holy Grass vodka is in with the chance of winning a national award despite only being launched in November. The distillery put forward their new creation to the Scotland Food & and Drink Awards and it has been selected as a finalist in the alcoholic drink category.

IMPROVEMENTS to the Berriedale Braes are still on the Scottish Government's agenda despite not being included in its existing spending programme. Deputy First Minister John Swinney said the SNP remains committed to bankrolling the solution to the longtime bottleneck on the A9, which causes particular problems for heavy goods vehicles and is seen as acting as a brake on the Caithness economy.

TWO Highland council leaderships roles in Caithness are set to be merged. The area presently has a Caithness committee leader and Caithness civic head, each purporting to be the local authority's figurehead in the county. Thurso councillors Donnie Mackay and John Rosie have led calls to have the two posts combined.

THE protocol for vessels traveling through the Pentland Firth is to be reviewed as a result of the deaths of eight men whose cargo boat capsized off the north Caithness coast.

A CAITHNESS Highland councillor has slammed piecemeal fixes of roads in the county as throwing public money down the drain. Landward councillor Gillian Coghill claims the state of the roads network in the county is "absolutely shocking" and is calling for the available resources to be spend more effectively.

AN upgrade to facilities at Thurso Fire Station is urgently needed due to the high ratio of female firefighters working in the area. Councillors are calling on the Scotltish Fire and Rescue Service to invest in facilities to cater for women at the Millbank Road base.

MP Dr Paul Monahan is still waiting for a response from Prime Minister David Cameron to queries he has, about the proposed transfer of batches of highly-enriched uranium to the United States. The SNP backbencher is pressing for details of the transportation plans, the ownership of the material and the purpose of the movements.

A GROUP of intrepid female fundraisers from west Caithness have just handed over the proceeds of a year-long drive to benefit three charities.. Friends for Fundraising spend 2015 raising funds for Maggies, Alzheimers Scotland and Reverse Rett, a rare genetic neurological disorder. Their efforts have paid off bigtime with representatives of the organisations having received 3550.