John O' Groat Journal headlines for February 24, 2017

A LEAKING pipe within a classroom at the new Wick High School, has been described as the latest in "a catalogue of disasters" to hit the new build as calls grow for an independent review to be carried out. The failure of a 15mm copper heating pipe, resulted in a leak which activated a fire alarm in a science lab at the new school on Monday night.

FOR decades, Caithness has been known as a surfer's paradise as the north coastline produces some of the best waves in the world for boarders to catch.

Now, a historian is writing a book on how the sport became part of the county's culture, looking at its influence from the past, what impact it has on the present and its future in the area.

LOCAL health campaigners have been left angry and disappointed after a meeting with Scottish Ambulance Service. Caithness Health Action Team feels Sas did not answer its questions and failed to address and engage with the issues the group raised.

A WELL-KNOWN investigative reporter and former police officer, has been looking at the case files of Kevin McLeod whose body was found in Wick harbour 20 years ago. Mark Williams-Thomas recently appeared on ITV's This Morning programme when he examined the death of Crime Watch presenter Jill Dando and the disappearance of young Madeline McCann.

LATHERON Parish Ploughing Association is hailing the success of its annual match which had to be postponed a number of times because of rough weather. The event was organised for November but was put off a few times before being held last Saturday, at Sour Farm near Halkirk, by permission of Messrs Gunn, Gerston, along with Forss Young Farmers' ploughing match. Champion of the field on the day, was Gavin Robertson, Barrock.

DEVELOPERS behind plans to build a 21-turbine wind farm near Reay remain confident their planning application will succeed, despite receiving a resounding knock-back from Highland Council. Infinergy remains positive the Scottish Government will give the green light to its scheme earmarked for forestry ground at Limekiln just south of the village. The issue is set to be settled at local public inquiry.

THURSO Heritage Society is hoping to go up in the world to film and map areas of local interest. It wants to buy a drone to record heritage sites and present day developments.

THERE was an excellent turnout at Thurso's Merlin Cinema for the Moving Picture Show's 30th annual screening. The final audience count saw 120 patrons attending the showing of Top Gunn. Tickets had sold well in advance of last Friday with some last-minute customers paying at the door.